LUHS High Ropes
The LUHS High Ropes program was implemented in the Spring of 2009 through a Federal Grant known as the Physical Education Program (PEP) Grant. This grant supplied the High Ropes platforms and materials over the East Court in the LUHS Field House. Along with the High Ropes (indoor), the Tango Tower found on the LUHS Campus (yet to be built) is another implemented hardware supported by the PEP Grant. High Ropes Courses are great tools for building team work, self-efficacy and student bonding!
A High Ropes Course!
A ropes course is an engineered set of structures that are designed to present challenges to individuals or groups. Ropes course structures may include low elements - those that take place on the ground, or high elements - usually constructed in trees or upon utility poles. Ropes course activities follow the fundamental philosophy of Experiential Education.
Ropes courses evolved out of obstacle courses usually used in military settings. These military obstacle courses are targeted at physically-fit adults, while contemporary ropes courses are used by people of all shapes, sizes and abilities. Modern ropes courses consist of sophisticated elements that have been designed with safety as paramount.
Typically, low elements (those taking place on the ground) are structures used by groups to develop group dynamics, communication and leadership skills, and high elements (those taking place atop utility poles or in trees) are structures used by individuals to develop self-confidence, self-esteem and to learn to overcome personal challenges, fears and obstacles.
High ropes course elements use complex belay systems, relying on ropes, harnesses, friction devices, carabiners and helmets. High ropes can be further described as being static or dynamic. Static ropes courses involve participants being secured (or secruing themselves) to an upper wire. Dynamic ropes courses involve participants being harnessed and connected to a rope that is belayed from a facilitator on the ground. Dynamic ropes courses can be considered safer, as once the participant is tied in, they remain tied in until the end of their participation. (All Berkshire Outdoor Center high ropes courses are dynamic (belayed) courses.)
Ropes courses are also known as challenge courses.