As Memorial Day weekend is coming up, it's a great time to take a moment to dwell on the past. So we thought a brief history lesson about slacklinging could also be in order. Did you know that originally the slackline was invented in the early 1980’s in Yosemite, California? The story goes that at Camp 4, a campsite near the base of the mythical Big Wall The Nose, climbing lovers were looking to stay busy on rainy days. They finally had the idea of setting chains / cords between two anchors to improve their balance like tightrope walkers.
During the 80 and 90’s, the slackline was still little practiced and remained essentially in the climbing world. The true start of the slackline only happened in the 2000’s as the chains and cords give way to straps, which were more comfortable for barefoot play. Although just a hobby for climbers, the pastime become a sport in itself thanks to technical progress and the appearance of specialist manufacturers like Slackline Industries.
10 years later slacklining became known to the general public as a must-see sport, that was more and more seen in climbing gyms and parks. Social media and the multiplication of slacker groups around the world have greatly increased its growth. Today, it is a distinct discipline with many variations such as :
- highlining (probably the most spectacular) which consists of walking the line high above the ground (over canyons, waterfalls, etc.).
- longlining that challenges slackers to walk a long distance on the line.
- tricklining, which adds jumps, backflips, and spins.
- slackline yoga which incorporates traditional yoga poses on the slackline to increase benefits/challenge.
- and many others. The slackline has also become complementary training to many sports.
Absolutely everyone can slackline; from your backyard to the park, it is a fun rendez-vous with friends and family. In order to make it accessible, SI offers 2-inch webbing and ratchet tensioner for an easy set up, no additional tools needed and you’re ready to go.
Would you like to give it a try? Shop your line today