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You have got to be kidding me.

Sara Lingafelter
Sara Lingafelter
1 min read

I am fit, and although I love to eat, I am relatively slim. I am healthy. In the last couple of years, I have lost weight and gained muscle. Fifteen pounds of fat and who knows how much muscle ago, I used to have asthma. I haven’t had a symptom in ages. By getting fit, I have reduced my risk of developing diabetes, heart disease, liver disease, and who knows what else. How did I do it? Rock climbing, and the hiking, training and general fitness training that goes with rock climbing.

So, now that I’m a grown up, and my employer no longer offers disability and life insurance, I started shopping for my own.

What’s the problem? You guessed it. Rock climbing.

Apparently, rock climbing is a high risk activity. To assess my eligibility for coverage, I have to fill out a “rock climbing” risk sheet, specifying whether I climb inside or outside, whether I climb with ropes or without, and what “height” of routes I climb.

OK. I can see how an insurance wonk would consider climbing dangerous, especially given some of the dangerous stuff I’ve seen other people doing at the crag. But I take issue with climbing being treated as more dangerous than other types of unhealthy habits and activities (like, driving a car to a climbing area or eating a Big Mac).

I’m doing my homework, and will post an update when and if I find an insurer who sees climbing for what it is to me — one of the primary reasons for my good health.

EDIT, 1/15/2008. We finally found coverage through Prudential. We pay about what we would if we were non-climbers, and our climbing activity is not excluded. The Prudential quote was the only competitive one we got that didn’t exclude rock climbing, and from what I’ve heard, Prudential tends to be relatively friendly to climbers. Check with your insurance agent…

Sara Lingafelter

Sara (Grace) Lingafelter takes steps forward and backward toward a right-sized life on a daily basis.