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Techies and sports!?

Author: JLB

Published On: August 10, 2009

It’s a well-known fact that developers are problem-solvers.  We live for problems, find solace in equations, get enveloped in logical puzzles.  It’s only natural that our talents would be carried outside of our jobs into our daily social and recreational lives.

Six months ago I got a membership at a local rock climbing gym and, until temperatures reached the 90s, tried to go outdoor climbing whenever possible.  I love the thrill of scaling the side of a seemingly unscalable wall and straining every muscle in my body to send a problem (bouldering lingo for finishing a single climb).  However, it wasn’t until recently that I realized the vast numbers of developers that are partaking in this sport as well. 

Perhaps it’s that the physical demand is seemingly less than in sports like soccer or basketball or maybe it’s the fact that climbing has mostly intrinsic payoffs and relies on one body, that of the person climbing, but I firmly believe that we developers gravitate toward such a sport due to its linear nature, continuous problem-solving and intense focus. 

Regardless of the reasons, I’ve met numerous developers recently at the climbing gym and know for a fact that web, software and application giants like Google, Yahoo, Facebook, etc. either have on-site climbing walls or have plenty of gyms nearby.  I guess even geeks enjoy physical strain in stress relief.

Granted, this is really no big discovery and doesn’t change anything, but I found it interesting that my choice to partake in this particular sport might be a shared influence among a larger development community.  So, if you’re a developer in the middle Tennessee area (hell, even if you know nothing about development) and are looking to take up a new hobby, I’d strongly urge you to look into rock climbing.  Tennessee has plenty of beautiful outdoor climbing sites that cater to all skill-levels and Climb Nashville, the gym where you’ll find me falling on my ass, really is a great place to get in a good after-work workout.


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