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Rock Climbing in Addiction Treatment

Rock Climbing Therapy for Addiction Recovery

Rock climbing is more than just being hooked up to a bunch of ropes and climbing up a wall. Rock climbing therapy gets you out of your everyday routine, challenges you in ways you’ve never experienced before and helps you focus on the present moment.

At The Raleigh House, we offer rock climbing as an experiential therapy activity that can help strengthen your body, toughen your mind and give you a new way to cope with stress instead of relying on alcohol or drug use.

How Does Rock Climbing Relate to Addiction Treatment?

Rock climbing is a vigorous, physical activity that requires the use of your hands, feet and other parts of the body to climb rocks, mountains or indoor structures. Rock climbing is a physically and mentally demanding activity that takes strength, will-power and determination to complete.

Unlike bouldering, top roping or other competitive rock climbing, The Raleigh House offers indoor rock climbing as part of our therapy, where clients can safely climb no matter the time of day or weather conditions outside.

Rock Climbing Therapy at The Raleigh House

At The Raleigh House, we believe you need a combination of evidence-based treatments and experiential therapies to help heal the mind, body and spirit from addiction. If you have one without the other, you’re missing a significant part of treatment that’s crucial to long-term recovery.

Indoor Rock Climbing at the Ranch

This is why we offer indoor rock climbing as an experiential therapy activity alongside evidence-based treatments like individual and group therapy. Our indoor rock climbing wall gives you a less traditional form of exercise and an outlet for any stress or emotions you may be feeling as you work through your addiction.

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Physical & Mental Benefits of Rock Climbing Therapy in Addiction Treatment

Rock climbing is a rewarding activity that offers countless benefits to those in addiction treatment. Some of these benefits include:

Physical Health

Addiction has harmed your body and diminished your physical strength. Similar to lifting weights or running, rock climbing can make you stronger and improve your overall physical health.


Addiction and dual diagnosis disorders can make you feel powerless. Each step you take on the wall and every new handhold you grab have the power to increase your confidence and remind yourself that you can do it.

Problem-Solving Skills

Rock climbing takes a lot of strategy and mental ability. Climbing can help re-train your brain valuable problem-solving and critical thinking skills that can then be applied to other parts of your life.

Increased Impulse Control

Impulsive behavior is tied to substance abuse. But there’s no room for impulsivity when you’re climbing a wall. Rock climbing helps you replace impulsive thinking with smarter, healthier decision-making.

Trust of Yourself and Others

Rock climbing can be intimidating, even when you’re attached to ropes. This is because you still have to count on the person holding the ropes to keep you safe. Climbing teaches you not only how to trust your own abilities, but to also trust other people – something you may have lost during your addiction or because of a trauma you experienced.

Rock Climbing Therapy for Processing Addiction

Ultimately, we want rock climbing to be another way for you to exercise and process the pain you’ve experienced from addiction or mental health struggles like depression, anxiety or trauma. And who knows, it may even become a passion you carry with you beyond treatment to help maintain long-lasting recovery.

Learn More About Our Holistic Addiction Treatment Programs

Our approach at The Raleigh House is not only to help you overcome addiction, but to challenge you to become a stronger, healthier, more confident individual who doesn’t need alcohol or drugs to feel fulfilled. This is what rock climbing as an experiential therapy for addiction treatment is all about.

If you or a loved one is suffering from an addiction, learn more about our treatment philosophy. If you have questions about rock climbing or our rehab program in general, please contact us today or call us directly at 720.891.4657.

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