Palms sweating, head spinning, legs shaking... just thinking about heights? Sound familiar?
If you're nodding yes- we are here to help! It's time to overcome that fear of heights.
“I am afraid of heights” is one of the most common things for us to hear. Everyday we meet apprehensive first-time zipliners that want to overcome their fears. Our tours are designed to build your confidence with each zipline, getting you comfortable enough to try some ‘freestyle’ moves by the last line. From the get-go, the guides work on building your trust while making you feel safe and secure.
Here are a few tips to help encourage you to face your fears and enjoy the zipline experience:
1. Forget ‘don’t look down’
You're not going to be able to avoid this one, and besides- you can’t face a fear without looking at it. So, take in your surroundings and try to focus on something else, such as the scenery and how beautiful it is. After all, you are in a big awesome tree fort in one of the rarest ecosystems on the planet.
2. Be prepared for the stairs.
One of the most common things that freak people out before zipping is having to walk down the stairs on the launching platform. The stairs are there to create a smooth transition from your feet on the ground to having your weight supported by your harness on the zipline. Our brains are programed to make us cautious around drop-offs but you have to remember you aren’t walking off them, you’re transitioning your support system. So here is my suggestion: don’t fixate on the last stair but instead visualize they go on forever. Repeat a mantra to yourself, such as: “I am safely secured onto the zipline, the stairs are only a transition”.
3. Concentrate on your breathing.
A tried and true method for calming oneself down. Focus on breathing with ease from your stomach. Count to 5 for each inhale and exhale to slow your breath down. We have some of the cleanest air in the world in Whistler so think about how happy your lungs will be!
4. Don’t over analyze.
Trust yourself and your guides. Know that you have the ability to face your fears and turn the experience into something fun that you will look back on and be proud of. You are stronger than you think! Safety and your overall experience is our #1 priority.
5. Talk it out.
Let your guides know that you are feeling nervous or anxious, they can help you feel comfortable and encourage you through it. To avoid focusing on your anxiety, engage with your companions and the other guests on tour to stay relaxed. On each tour we have fantastic people come out from all around the world, you might even make a new friend that lives in your next travel destination.
Lastly, take comfort in that you are not alone and others are sharing the same feeling, they too have pushed their limits and conquered their fears! Here is some inspirational feedback we’ve received for guests over the years:
“My daughter chose to do this as part of her graduation present but since I am not at all comfortable with heights I tried to talk her out of it. No such luck, and now I am glad I didn't. The first zip line was the hardest but with each line we went to I gained more confidence and by the end I was able to let go with both hands until the end of the line (my husband and daughter went upside down)....The staff were very encouraging and made me feel safe. I would highly encourage everyone to give this a try, you may surprise yourself.” cdkhall, TripAdvisor
“I have a fear of heights.... looking down from anything high I lose my equilibrium. I really wasn't too keen on doing this. To convince myself it was ok... I read every review to get an idea of what other people experienced.... By the last review I convinced myself it would be fine....don't worry....I went....I did it....I conquered!!! Bear Tour behind me... I'm now ready to take on the Eagle Tour. It was the best experience of my life and to think I let fear try to rob me of this awesome adventure. Just do it!!!! You won't regret it.”HarmonyInSeptember, TripAdvisor
“Let me preface this review, 1) I don't like heights, 2) I'm basically terrified of high places, 3) I don't climb ladders taller than myself....I'm 5'5" by the way...
Both guides knew I wasn't that thrilled to be out there, my body english was getting the best of me, Josh noted that when he saw me clinging for my life at the viewing platform, he'd have to watch out for me.... but both kept reassuring me that they would take good care of my family....I was thinking, wait... what? After I'm dead? The guides were chill, didn't lay on the "macho" attitude nor did they pressure anyone in our group of 10 to do more than what we felt we were capable or willing to do, i.e. hands off, upside down, etc....screaming at the top your lungs was per the norm...a lot of wolf howling from our guide Darragh, he totally made the trip for us.
Granted I still hate heights, but I will say this trip, it was a B-L-A-S-T!!!! We'll be back for sure!!! I can't believe I just wrote that...” D.J.Y., Yelp