A Slight Introduction to The World Of Highlining

By : Landon Hale 

One of the most liberating things about action and adventure sports is there is no mastery, only progression. This is why high-lining is so appealing to me. When I first saw videos of people walking between cliffs on thin webbing I thought it was the ultimate sport; something I wanted to participate in, photograph and dedicate serious time to. So I found myself in the park learning to walk a slackline. If you approach it with the mindset of being the best then you lose sight on the value of all the micro progressions. Each hour spent walking a slack-line in the park is one step closer to the next level in the learning process. Trust me, every little milestone feels unbelievably gratifying because slacklining and highlining are really hard. They are sports that transcend fun and create athletic and internal discipline. 
Man High-lining
Athlete : Jacob Pawlak - @parkrangerjake
In order to walk on the line you have to quieting your mind, control your breathing and really hone in and focus. This preconceived notion of slacklining / highlining being this big adrenaline rush is only somewhat true. Sure, when you fall off the line or sit suspended hundred of feet off the ground, you get those pulses of adrenaline and fear but the true practice involves calming the mind and being truly relaxed. The more you tense up and fight it, the more the line fights back. Calm your mind, calm the line.
Man backflipping on high-line
Athlete : Jacob Pawlak - @parkrangerjake
Athlete : Shane Schlesinger - @shane_schlesinger
Not only are slacklining and highlining good for the individual to be in tune with themselves, they have some of the most inviting subcultures I have ever experienced. The first thing you are likely to hear when stumbling across this group in the parks, mountains, and deserts are cheers of encouragement to hop on a line. They will even reach out a helping hand to assist with those shaky first steps. As time moves on, if you are still involved with the groups (which seems impossible to resist once you have had a taste of their camaraderie) you will begin to participate in the eclectic acts of expression surrounding the sport. Including but not limited to; naked high-lining, poi spinning, costumes of all types, massive rope swings, van life parties, dirtbag cooking and all the buckwheat you can eat. Needless to say, it’s a damn good time.
High - Line
Athlete : Shane Schlesinger - @shane_schlesinger
Athlete : Sam Karthan - @samkarthan
Now I have only been involved with slackline/highline culture for a little over a year (most of which included hundreds of hours in the park learning how to walk a slackline comfortably). In that time I have made lifelong friends, learned the importance of community, found inner peace through discipline, suspended myself hundreds of feet off the earth, traveled across the American southwest, laughed non stop, cried, and most importantly had fun. It’s a big world out there and I feel fortunate and excited to explore it on thin webbed lines.
Athlete : Sam Karthan - @samkarthan
Featured Image :  Athlete :  Sienna Pickard - @siennapickard