SLGirl Melissa D. Talks about her beginning progress in slacklining!

Written by: Melissa D

Yesterday I hit the park again as my slacklining adventures continue.  It was my third day practicing, and I finally felt more confident walking, and was able to walk a good 12 feet or so.  I also began dabbling in tricks, but this location wasn’t the best for it, as there were some rocks just under the surface of the grass, making the ground very hard.

I’m in the process of uploading a video for evidence, since there was no one there to witness it.  :)

Today was a completely different ball game. I set the line twice as long as I had been setting it on all of my previous attempts (about 24-26 feet), and I could definitely tell the difference. It’s amazing how much harder the line becomes to master as it gets longer! Add in some 20-25 mph gusts of wind, and it makes it that much harder.  

I took the challenge head on, though, and killed it.

Okay, okay…”killed it” might be a little extreme.  But I’m excited, and to me, it FEELS like I’m a rockstar. It took some time to warm up to the feel of the new line, and for the longest time I was stuck at about 18 feet and couldn’t break past it.  After some self pep-talking and time spent clearing my mind, I hopped back on and immediately walked the full length of the line! 25 feet accomplished in less than a week, with no more than 4 hours total practice time.

It drained me, though. As I got closer and closer to the other tree, my heart rate sped up from the excitement.  I didn’t realize until after I hopped off and did my little victory dance that I had droplets of sweat forming on my forehead and I was out of breath from the focus and concentration of the fight to stay on the line. I was only able to kinda-sorta walk the line two more times after that, both times the ratchet part of the line tripped me up and I’m not sure if they should really count.   After those attempts, my distance started getting shorter and shorter as my muscles grew tired and my focus began to stray, so eventually I called it a night.

I gathered some spectators today, too. For a while the two girls laying in the sun on the dock were watching from a distance, and I could hear them go “ah, so close” as I kept falling off around 18 feet. The old couples fishing watched the whole time, and one guy rode by on his bike and yelled “SLACKLINING! AWESOME!”.

To say I’m addicted might be an understatement. I think my mom has gotten sick of hearing about slacklining, but it feels like it’s what I’m supposed to be doing. Like a calling, or something. I find myself sitting at the desk at work googling as much about slacklining and professional slackliners as I can with the military filter blocking out a lot of blogs and media sites.  

I keep trying to get all of my friends out on the line with me, because I just want to find someone who connects with the sport as much as I do.  Someone that can accompany me during my training sessions that I can exchange suggestions and try new things with. Someone to push me. It would be awesome if I happened to find someone who had experience rigging longer and higher lines, as that’s ultimately what I’m hoping to get to. I think that’s wishful thinking around here, though.  For now I’ll have to settle with finding someone to learn with me.

To see this post and others by Melissa  CLICK HERE

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