The computer-controlled Climbstation vertical treadmill
By Jack Martin
July 11, 2009
Now here's one of those ideas that leaps out at you with its commercial potential. Climbing offers extreme exercise with a nuclear fun factor and teaches fundamental coordination skills but it can be dangerous and scary with the heights involved, and besides, a climbing wall requires a serious commitment to locate and build. The computer-controlled ClimbStation is like an intelligent vertical treadmill for climbers, so it provides real climbing without the need for a safety harness because you never got more than a metre off the ground. ClimbStation hydraulically tilts between +15 degrees and minus 39 degrees, the holds are interchangeable, and the most significant thing about the ClimbStation is that it can be transported with a normal car trailer, making it an ideal relocatable owner-operator or amusement attraction.
Multiple sensors and intelligent automation make the ClimbStation far more than just a dumb treadmill . After selecting a climbing level from 1-12, you climb at your own speed. If you are fast, the wall rotates faster, if you stop for time to think your next move, (climbing is indeed as much a mental sport as a physical one), the wall will slow down and stop if necessary to keep you in its centre.
Quite clearly the biggest potential for the ClimbStation is as a resort or amusement park activity, and as it can be transported by car trailer, it offers a unique and potentially lucrative owner-operator ride for school fundraisers, markets, fetes, and so on. The machine can be ordered with a coin or smart card option and costs between EUR 30,000 and EUR 38,000 depending on options and there's a nifty ROI calculator here that enables you to calculate the profit potential whether you're an owner-operator with a trailer, or a theme park.
Ease of transportation has been one of the primary factors in the design, and preparation for transport involves setting it to a special position so it can be safely carried on normal car trailer. Total height when transporting is two meters. Ease of maintenance is also regarded as one of the most important aspects of the ClimbStation.
Setting up the 750 kg machine requires seven square meters (190 cm x 360 cm) of floor space and four meters of vertical clearance and the number of handholds (standard 90) on the 6.5 meter long climbing belt can be increased or decreased depending on the abilities of the audience.
The touchscreen controller can be changed between several different languages (including English) and 12 different levels of difficulty, with the angle of the wall and speed of the150 cm wide climbing belt variable up to a very rapid 17 meters per minute. ClimbStation can also be set to a fully automatic mode, where you don’t need to press any buttons - just start climbing. When you fall down, ClimbStation will stop and restart from the beginning for the next climber.
ClimbStation comes with a 24 month warranty and takes around 8 - 12 weeks from order to delivery readiness, with freight time from Finland to be added.