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UER Forum > UE Main > Conquering Your Fear of Heights (Viewed 3071 times)
Baldran 


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Solvitur Ambulando

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Conquering Your Fear of Heights
< on 7/28/2017 5:07 AM >
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Any other acrophobic explorers here who've managed to conquer their fear of heights in pursuit of awesome summits? Share your stories! There's a bridge I cross every day that would be super easy to climb, if I weren't deathly afraid of heights due to a childhood accident.




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Steed 


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Re: Conquering Your Fear of Heights
< Reply # 1 on 7/28/2017 5:21 AM >
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Nope, I'm still afraid of heights. Whenever I climb a crane, I often have to stop, hug the ladder, and repeat "it's not tipping over, it's not tipping over."




muiy0 


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!!!

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Re: Conquering Your Fear of Heights
< Reply # 2 on 7/28/2017 5:59 AM >
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My general rule is "try not to think about it too much" and start climbing right away.. heart palpitations every time though. It adds to the adrenaline rush ☺️




it's always amateur hour on my clock
Samurai 

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Re: Conquering Your Fear of Heights
< Reply # 3 on 7/28/2017 7:21 AM >
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conquer your fear of heights? get a job where you have to (as part of your job) go out on to tanks, towers, catwalks, platforms... you'll lose your fear real fast or go find another job.

when I started my job in the pulp mill, they dragged me up on top of the Hi-D tanks (110-115ft), out on to the platform out to the digester top separator (187ft) and then near the hot water tank (125ft)... yeah, I got over my fear quick.




OH_ZOG_NO 


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Re: Conquering Your Fear of Heights
< Reply # 4 on 7/28/2017 1:46 PM >
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As a child i was absolutely terrified of any heights over water. Im talking like a meter over. That was fixed by having a large burly guy physically throw me off a diving board. Surprisingly it worked




Aran 


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Re: Conquering Your Fear of Heights
< Reply # 5 on 7/28/2017 6:20 PM >
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Posted by Steed
Nope, I'm still afraid of heights. Whenever I climb a crane, I often have to stop, hug the ladder, and repeat "it's not tipping over, it's not tipping over."


Don't you just love the way they sway in the breeze?


But yeah, I tend to think about just one rung at a time. You couldn't pay me to go out onto the boom itself.




I was born too late to explore the world, but too early to explore the stars. So instead I'll explore the city, and see what I can see.

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NeuroticMatt 


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Re: Conquering Your Fear of Heights
< Reply # 6 on 7/28/2017 7:08 PM >
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Not to start a big discussion, but I want to point out that there is a difference between a fear of heights and being uncomfortable with heights.

Most people I know are uncomfortable with heights. I have a fear of heights.

I avoid them at all cost. I experience very uncomfortable physical reactions to being off the ground. Tightness in chest, hard to breathe, often times experience severe dizziness/vertigo. If I am not holding on to something rigid such as handrail I have been known to fall over while standing still. I have issues standing on a chair to change a light bulb.

Unfortunate enough, my job calls for me to visit elevated areas pretty often. I can climb up stairs, as long as I have both hands free for handrail. (This eliminates spiral stairways along tanks that only have one handrail) It is impossible for me to climb an industrial ladder that is over say 12-15 feet. Even at that low level, my nose usually brushes the rungs as I go up.

I have found myself on top of structures that were 220ft tall. It took me 45 minutes to get up, and 45 minutes to get down. Pretty much stopping at each level to calm down.

Been working here for 20 years, and have had more than a few times that I have had to refuse a task due to it. Everyone here, including our clients knows about my issue and is very accommodating.

So, you will never see this guy on a crane.



Side note: I have no issue on airplanes? Go figure.


Extra Side Note: My fear of heights also freaks me out in deep water. Like I am afraid I will fall to the bottom. Found this out the hard way... If anything I have discovered is that fears are often totally irrational.


Seriously, my heart rate is going up just typing this. And to answer the question, for me there is no getting over my fear of heights. Just coping and avoiding. lol




Rotting 


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Re: Conquering Your Fear of Heights
< Reply # 7 on 7/28/2017 8:08 PM >
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I feel as a general idea that everyone is afraid of heights due to human instinct. But they all with very to large extents

To overcome anything you need to just do it, simple as that. The first step is the hardest but once you do, everything will be all the more easier. After you do it, it's just gonna come easier each time to do that task.

The funny thing is, I actually went cliff jumping yesterday



[last edit 7/28/2017 8:47 PM by Rotting - edited 1 times]

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thingamabob 


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Re: Conquering Your Fear of Heights
< Reply # 8 on 7/28/2017 8:28 PM >
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I like to rationalize my fear by thinking its perception related, I'm almost 6ft but even if I was vertically challenged, my feet would still be at 10ft on a ten foot ladder.. It just -looks- higher up to me.


Sadly though I still, maybe not freak out, but am suddenly hyper aware of every slight breeze or shift at 10ft. Higher is borderline panic attack.

For me specifically, up is fine. Up I can do all day, but down is damn near impossible. Haven't tested this theory with a crane yet, however, so maybe up is bad too.

Once I was able to push past it by having someone in front of me on stairs, blocking my view of the steps so I couldn't see how far down. Hindsight, I do realize how risky doing that was. Sketchy stairs.

But I did find out that I'm going skydiving when I go to visit friends in San Francisco, so hopefully exposure does the trick.. Or more damage, will post my findings after potentially being pushed out of a plane.



[last edit 7/28/2017 8:29 PM by thingamabob - edited 1 times]

But if you are going artsy, then you're going all the way. Someone's cutting off an ear!
blackhawk 


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Re: Conquering Your Fear of Heights
< Reply # 9 on 7/28/2017 9:45 PM >
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Posted by Baldran
Any other acrophobic explorers here who've managed to conquer their fear of heights in pursuit of awesome summits? Share your stories! There's a bridge I cross every day that would be super easy to climb, if I weren't deathly afraid of heights due to a childhood accident.


Fear is normal and healthy to a point.
It's you friend never let it become your master because it is a poor leader.
When fear breaks your concentration or paralyzes you, it is more than useless; it's a danger in it's self.

Take a leap of faith...
I did when I was 6 yo and some of the older boys dare me to climb a tree they had nailed climbing boards up about 20 feet. After I got to the end of the climbing boards I kept going another 15 feet or so, to their alarm.
Lol, dare yourself and excel.
I've been climbing over half a century and never have fallen once. This is doable.

The blackhawk High Anxiety Slam Dunk Coarse

Fall off the horse... get back on, Pilgrim, and don't make the same mistake.
Don't play games with yourself... DO IT.
You can't fall if you don't fuck up.
This is all about personal confidence/integrity and being in physical shape.
You need strong legs.
You should be able to do at least 8 chin ups in strict form.
You should not be fat or obese; a big liability.
You need to have enough anaerobic endurance reserve to complete the climb safely.

3 points of contact always.
Each handhold and foot fall count, make sure they are spot on every time as you make contact.
With 3 points of contact you have redundancy, but it's a fail safe.
It's for a foot slip etc that shouldn't ever happen.
With 2 points you have no redundancy, don't.
Keep your eyes and mind on what exactly what you're doing with your feet and hands when climbing.
Bug out if at anytime it isn't safely doable.

Never jump even if it's just the last 2 feet to the ground. Maintain control the whole climb.

Best to always keep a hand hold, elbow or knee lock even when resting at height.

Walking on beams is easier, but even 18 inches doesn't seem wide enough 70 feet up. Walking with no handhold is dangerous but doable if you wish.
Always take small steps; more stability.
Or just go across on your ass... whatever works safely.
Climb uncaged tank straight ladders by putting your hands on the outside rails, not the rungs. A side to side motion with your upper body makes it easy.

NEVER climb wet steel.
NEVER play on steel.
NEVER climb when sick, injured or fatigued.
NEVER climb in high wind or foul weather.
Best to do it in daylight... go slow as needed at night.
Wear high top laced boots, long legged pants.
Climbing in soft soled shoes can fuck up the arch area of the foot, don't!
Have climbing gloves suitable for steel climbing.

*Water tanks are an easy first climb and excellent for developing strength/endurance and confidence.






Non ducor, duco
Samurai 

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Re: Conquering Your Fear of Heights
< Reply # 10 on 7/29/2017 8:32 AM >
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not only am I afraid of heights, but I am fucking terrified of the ocean.
...and plants. (that one I have been trying to figure out since I was 4)




Rotting 


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Cya

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Re: Conquering Your Fear of Heights
< Reply # 11 on 7/29/2017 1:56 PM >
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Posted by Samurai
not only am I afraid of heights, but I am fucking terrified of the ocean.
...and plants. (that one I have been trying to figure out since I was 4)



...plants???

Explain a little more, I'm curious now




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blackhawk 


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manes lupus

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Re: Conquering Your Fear of Heights
< Reply # 12 on 7/29/2017 3:27 PM >
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Posted by Samurai
not only am I afraid of heights, but I am fucking terrified of the ocean.
...and plants. (that one I have been trying to figure out since I was 4)



Perhaps a traumatic experience with brussel sprouts or lima beans




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Radio2600 


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Re: Conquering Your Fear of Heights
< Reply # 13 on 7/30/2017 2:58 AM >
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Posted by blackhawk


Perhaps a traumatic experience with brussel sprouts or lima beans








Two of the most famous products of Berkeley are LSD and Unix. I don’t think that this is a coincidence.
Lola AB 


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Re: Conquering Your Fear of Heights
< Reply # 14 on 7/30/2017 3:04 AM >
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Before I got into any of the UE stuff, I started rock/ ice climbing. I was absolutely terrified of heights and my legs would stop moving and the panic would set in. I've learned to control that now and although have moments of stress, am so much better with it.

Doing some controlled climbing in a harness in a rock gym will help you build your confidence and learn to trust your body more. Especially your feet and legs. It also helps you practice controlling the fear, talking yourself through it and so on.

I'd say it always helps to get that first fall out of the way but that doesn't quite work here.....;)




Radio2600 


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Re: Conquering Your Fear of Heights
< Reply # 15 on 7/30/2017 3:10 AM >
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Addressing the original question...



IDK - Get a good harness and Y shock absorbing lanyard with rebar hooks so you can climb with 100% tie-off until you get used to climbing.

Have some soothing music on your mind.







Two of the most famous products of Berkeley are LSD and Unix. I don’t think that this is a coincidence.
blackhawk 


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manes lupus

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Re: Conquering Your Fear of Heights
< Reply # 16 on 7/30/2017 3:59 AM >
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Posted by Radio2600
Addressing the original question...
IDK - Get a good harness and Y shock absorbing lanyard with rebar hooks so you can climb with 100% tie-off until you get used to climbing. 



I don't think that is a good plan.
For the type of climbing done while UEing climbing harnesses are mostly useless.

Climbing harnesses can cause falls when climbing on structural steel.
This isn't rock climbing.
On structural steel many times a harnessed fall will pull you into the steel assuming you're properly tie off to begin with. Dozens of moves and having to anchor yourself with each gets tedious, energy consuming, and breaks concentration.

You can get jam up by the gear it's self or the tether line getting snagged/in the way on steel... been there, done that.
Regardless if you have a harness on or not, you fall, you have lost control completely and at the least expect to be broken bones seriously hurt.
Steel is completely unforgiving.

Falling is never an option... if you can't do this, don't climb!




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Radio2600 


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Tux is my co-pilot.

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Re: Conquering Your Fear of Heights
< Reply # 17 on 7/31/2017 3:34 AM >
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I climb radio towers with a harness.




Two of the most famous products of Berkeley are LSD and Unix. I don’t think that this is a coincidence.
blackhawk 


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manes lupus

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Re: Conquering Your Fear of Heights
< Reply # 18 on 7/31/2017 3:52 AM >
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Posted by Radio2600
I climb radio towers with a harness.


That makes sense especially if you need to tie off to work.
Guys work on drill rigs sometimes hanging in midair in a harness. Working with hanging steel weighing hundred, even thousands of pounds.
That's spooky stuff.



[last edit 7/31/2017 4:06 AM by blackhawk - edited 1 times]

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Samurai 

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Re: Conquering Your Fear of Heights
< Reply # 19 on 7/31/2017 1:12 PM >
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Posted by Rotting


...plants???

Explain a little more, I'm curious now


plants creep me out, especially big leafy ones. No idea why.
Just always have.

To this day I still don't like them.




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