To break into a glamorous goat-whispering career, prospective hilltop therapists must first learn to reach their patients. Become one with the ever-hungered hilltopper with today's Groupon to Planet Rock in Pontiac or Ann Arbor. Choose between two options:
For $18, you get the adult starter package and one free day-climbing pass to use within 30 days of your initial visit.
For $45, you get the adult starter package and one two-week unlimited climbing pass to use within 30 days of your initial visit.
Both deals include basic instruction and rental of shoes, harness, chalk bag, and belay device.
After one of Planet Rock's half-salamander, half-mountain-goat instructors teaches you the finer points of rock-climbing safety and corrects common beginner mistakes (burrowing into the earth, getting trapped inside the rock, walking up the wall horizontally), you'll be free to explore all the ways one can climb a rock. Besides classic top-rope and belay climbing, you can also doff the harness and do a little bouldering close to the ground in one of Planet Rock's caves. To feel like you're training for Ninja Warrior, you'll want to test your rock-talons on the rock-tread wall, a treadmill climbing wall that rotates as you climb it according to the speed and angle you set. Once your first day of instruction and climbing is finished, you'll still have a pass to try it again either for another day or for a full two weeks.
A day of instruction and climbing at Planet Rock will help prepare you for the inevitable day when you're dangling from a sheer cliff and must hang on until the super-villain above you finishes monologuing his master plan. Call ahead or arrive at least 2.5 hours prior to closing to allow enough time for instruction. You must sign a waiver prior to climbing.