Slacklining is a great new sport that combines the skills of tight rope walking with trampolining. The beginner starts by learning how to balance and walk on the slackline and advances to be able to bounce, jump and do flips, landing back on the line.
The line is generally 10 to 25 metres in length and just 50mm wide. It's secured between two strong anchor points - usually trees. It's set at around 50cm off the ground and with the flex in the line tends to be lower than 50cm when walked upon.
Slacklining is not easy - it looks easy, but takes hours of practice and determination to master the basics. The challenge is daunting at first but the skills start to build the more time is spent on the line.
The sport tends to be very social - it always causes a crowd to gather around and watch or participate. As new tricks are tried other tricks evolve and the players encourage each other to the next level.
Slacklining develops the coordination and balance of the players and provides a workout for core abdominal muscles. The concentration and focus required to walk the line takes the slackliners to a sense of calm - all outside thoughts are shut out as the focus goes on balance and poise.
In New Zealand, Slacklining may be seen in parks, school yards, back yards and at the beach. The slacklining comunity is growing as awareness of the sport expands. Many thanks to the tourists who come here and want to Slackline with Kiwi's - they have taught us so much.