Monday, April 26, 2010

How to Rappel

Taking student groups all over Costa Rica and rappeling different waterfalls in the country it is must to do the rappel to perfection. All groups have to be operated at a level of perfection when it comes to rappel but extra special attention when dealing with student travel. The sport of rappel is an adventure sport that should always be extremely safe. It is a sport that has become popular in Costa Rica and walking off the side of a waterfall is not something you can say you do everyday. The training to become a rappel guide has to take you through some courses but the ability to do the rappel as part of a tour is a short class going through the basics. This next blog is going to take you through the steps you need to make your first rappel a perfect one.

First of all you want to have the right gear. This should include adventure sandals, or shoes that will not fall off. You want to wear clothing that will protect you from the harnass and also without a hat because you will be wearing a helmet. When it comes to jewelery and things you dont need anything and the less things that have a chance of getting caught the better. Finally if you have long hair you want to have the hair tied up. This prevents your hair from getting caught in the equipment.

On our student travel to Costa Rica we deal with two types of rappel. The first being just simply walking down the side of the mountain or wall. The second type of rappel is the free rappel. You can see in the pictures the different between the two. The next list is the basic things you need to do when rappeling:

1. Keep feet shoulder width apart.
2. Extend your legs
3. Don not lean forward. Allow equipment to hold your body weight.
4. Feed rope from the back.
5. The hand above the equipment is only used as a guider and do not try and hold your body weight with this hand.
6. Take it slow.

These are the basic steps to getting you down the side of the mountain. The way it works is that your equipment works as friction and your body weight ultimately gets you down the side of the mountain. Our studnet travel trips always have two lines one as a safetey line just incase you decide to not follow one of these steps we are always there to make the ride a little smoother. When visiting Costa Rica the zipline usually gets the most credit but I have to say the rappel is becoming more and more popular and with some simple steps it can be an amazing adventure.

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