Hobbies – Rock Climbing

So far since being married, I have gotten into a number of hobbies to help break up the monotony. This past couple years, I have gotten into rock climbing. The sport is fun. Where I live, there are several places where climbers have put up bolted routes or accessible anchors to climb up.

To get into it, I spent maybe $500 for the rope, shoes, harnesses, and other equipment that we needed. In addition, I got a couple books, learned from my brother, and watched a number of Youtube videos on how to tie myself off safely.

It has been a real joy to do with my family. There is this favorite cliff we can hike to, where I hike around the back side, hook into the anchors at the top of the cliff, then repel myself off to the base. From there, we will spend an entire afternoon taking turns climbing up the cliff. My wife will make a picnic with potato salad and sandwiches, and we will hang out.

Surprisingly, the best climber in my family is not me, nor my oldest son. It is my 11 year old daughter. She has a flexibility and a core strength that we can’t match. Maybe, it is because she is still less than 100 pounds.

The little kids who are not climbing will spend the afternoon playing in the dirt, or climbing trees. Either way, it is a fun way to spend a fall afternoon.

Benefits of Playing Outdoors

This weekend, I went with a good friend of mine (I’ll call him Luke) on a two night backpacking trip. I took my five oldest kids (ages 13, 11, 9, 8, and 5) and Luke took his three oldest (ages 11, 10 and 8, all boys). Because they never went on an overnight pack packing trip before, I decided to do a Continue reading “Benefits of Playing Outdoors”

Planning a Cheap Summer Picnic

As more and more kids just spend their days with their face glued to a screen, I try to come up with fun things for my kids to do outside.  Sunday’s are a “device free” day where we all unplug and enjoy each other’s company.  I try to find things to do that don’t cost too much, but are also rewarding.  You’d be surprised how little it takes for the kids to have a great time they’ll remember forever

Continue reading “Planning a Cheap Summer Picnic”

Favorite Lifts: DB Close Grip Bench and Bent Bar Cable Tricep Pushdowns

Happy Monday! Guys we have a month until July 4th, the official Suns Out Guns Out holiday.  Are you beater ready?  I’m working out 7 days a week this month so I can really push the next 4 weeks.  I’ll continue to work on lagging bodyparts with an update to my favorite lifts series.  I want to build my triceps up a bit so today I’ll be reviewing Dumbbell Close Grip Bench Presses and Bent Bar Tricep PushdownsContinue reading “Favorite Lifts: DB Close Grip Bench and Bent Bar Cable Tricep Pushdowns”

Get Out of my House!!

For most of us, summer is basically here already.  While the “unoffical” start is Memorial Day, the nice weather makes me want to get outside and do things.  I want to be out in the sun, with the family, enjoying the day and each others company.  Yet, as simple as this may seem, I’m seeing a disturbing trend these days with families, and especially children.  There seems to be a lack in the desire to spend time together outside.  Today I’ll go over why this is a problem, and what you can do to maximize your summer.

Continue reading “Get Out of my House!!”

How To Improve Your Sparring

It’s been a while since I’ve written a martial arts post and think it’s about time to cover some more important concepts.  In this article, we’re going to cover three concepts that tie together to improve your overall skill.  These are useful in sparring, but are also principles that equally applicable for self-defense.

This concept is based on a pyramid where you must gain a solid foundation on the existing level before progressing to the next level.  Those three levels, in order, are Coordination, Application, and Flow.   Continue reading “How To Improve Your Sparring”

Way of the Warlord: Final Phase

This week we complete our Way of the Warlord program here at A Kings Castle.  This is designed to be an interactive physical, mental, and martial arts program where the authors of the site give out a two week challenge to the readers to better ourselves and become better men.

Continue reading “Way of the Warlord: Final Phase”

Your Circle of Friends

We’ve all heard the saying that you’re the average of your five closest friends, but how many have truly sat down and thought of the ramifications of such a statement?  Which of you have really taken a close look at the men you hang out with and came to some uncomfortable conclusions?  I can tell you I have and it can be tough, especially if those friends are friends you grew up with. Continue reading “Your Circle of Friends”

How To: Build A Plumbing Pipe Lamp

WARNING: The article below involves using electrical parts and wiring them up yourself.  We assume no responsibility for injury or damage to personal property.

I love a building project. Whether its building a whole new deck on the back of your house, or making a simple lamp, the pride you can take from watching something come to form makes you happy.  I have made 2 of these style lamps now and figured I’d share a fun, inexpensive project you can use as a functional yet stylish conversation piece, or even give as a one gift.

Continue reading “How To: Build A Plumbing Pipe Lamp”

Building Your Tribe

“What’s in a life without Camaraderie? For setting sail on a ship with a band of merry brothers by your side is much more gratifying than drifting aimlessly on a boat lost alone at sea.”

-Saim A. Cheeda

The modern world has changed our lives in many ways, some for the better and some for the worse.  Still, some other changes are unique and provide both benefits and hindrances.  One such modern marvel is the creation of the internet and social media.  With it, we have become more connected than ever before, able to talk to people around the globe in real time.

So why do many men feel more disconnected than ever? Continue reading “Building Your Tribe”