All You Need To Know About Coasteering
Believed to have originated in Pembrokeshire, Wales, coasteering is the outdoor pursuit of climbing up cliffs and then simply jumping off them! Coasteering is also now very popular due to the unique geographical coastline the UK has to offer.
Ok, so there’s a little more to it than that of course, but we’re assuming you’re already sold! As well as providing a massive adrenaline rush, it’s also a great way of accessing areas of the coast that would otherwise be lost to the sea, meaning you get to see some amazing natural sights, as well as gaining a load of new skills and experiences – if you’ve got the stomach for the journey itself.
What you need to know about coasteering before you go?
It’s not all jumping off cliffs!
As mentioned above, there’s a little more to coasteering than launching yourself off a cliff into the sea! While that’s the bit everyone remembers, there are actually several different elements to coasteering that you need to be comfortable with. As well as scaling cliffs and jumping off them into deep water, you will also be required to do some low-level traversing, wild swimming, cave discovery and navigation of whirlpools, sluices and gullies. The various elements and skills are what makes coasteering so much fun and so addictive!
It’s a great way to make new friends
Coasteering is a group activity and so you are all but guaranteed to make some new friends along the way. Most courses will accept people signing up either on their own, in couples or groups, and then make sure you head out onto the cliffs in a safe number. And once you’ve all been in the same boat (or not, in the case of coasteering, you’re sure to remain great, thrill-seeking friends after. Alternatively, it could also be a great team-building exercise for a big group, for example from work or a sports team.
It’s really accessible
Coasteering routes can be adapted to suit pretty much any level of age, experience or athleticism. While you will need to be able to doggy paddle to keep yourself afloat in the water, and get yourself up and down some rocks, you don’t necessarily need to be a trainee Olympian to take part – which is exactly why coasteering was developed in the first place!
Build confidence and learn new skills
Through coasteering and the new challenges it presents to most people, you’re sure to learn something about yourself and do things you didn’t think you’d be capable of, either mentally or physically. It’s a fantastic way to build confidence and self-esteem, as well as developing new skills and getting a great work-out in the process.
You get to buy exciting new kit
Who doesn’t love new kit? Whatever pursuit you’re involved in, new goodies are always exciting! And with coasteering, while you don’t necessarily need tons of stuff to get started, it’s sure to fill your wardrobe with items you didn’t previously have. For first-timers, most coasteeringcentres will be able to provide you with the basics, but once you’re hooked, it makes sense to treat yourself to some smart new gear. You’ll need a wetsuit, helmet, buoyancy aid, lace-up trainers with good grip for wet surfaces, and neoprene coasteer shorts to complete your collection. As time goes on, you can add things like wetsuit socks, wetsuit gloves, a wetsuit hat/hood and canyoning boots to your collection.
Each time you go you’ll get a different experience
The great thing about nature is it’s always changing, with the coast a prime example of this. Whether you go to the same spot time and again, or explore new areas, you’ll be treated to exciting new sights and challenges each and every time. Not only that, but most coasteering routes are designed so they become progressively more challenging. So regardless of whether you’re a weaker swimmer, scared of heights or claustrophobic, there will be a challenge to overcome suitable to your level and needs, allowing you to push yourself as much or as little as you want, and develop at your own rate.
You’ll be treated to some stunning sights
The great thing about coasteering is that you get to see the coast and nature from a completely unique perspective that you couldn’t possibly experience from the vantage point of dry land. Due to some of the craggy areas you’ll squeeze through, there are also opportunities to see wildlife that thrives in these types of conditions, so it becomes a whole educational experience as well as an adrenaline rush and learning new skills.