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Explore Indoors

By Kirsten Harr

For many people, winter is synonymous with hibernation from physical activity. When the temperature drops and frozen precipitation falls, only the brave (and those acclimated to cold weather) dare to venture outside to participate in some form of exercise. Thankfully, there are plenty of indoor sports available in our area to keep everyone active and physically fit throughout the winter months.

Rock Climbing

Indoor rock climbing is a great way to stay active. The Climbing Place, located on West Russell Street in Downtown Fayetteville, has over 40,000 climbing holds, 60 top ropes, a massive overhang area, a 300 feet gym traverse and thousands of square feet of bouldering surface. With 18,000 square feet of climbing surface, the facility is the largest indoor rock climbing center in North Carolina.

Emily Schwartz enjoys the workout she gets at The Climbing Place and finds indoor climbing to be a dynamic challenge.

“They change the routes on a daily basis so the climb is different every time,” Schwartz said.

Indoor Rock Climbing is a great activity for the entire family. Opening its doors to the public in 1995, The Climbing Place provides a safe and rewarding indoor climbing experience with basic climbs that are easy enough for a beginner, and advanced climbs that are challenging enough for an expert.

Fayetteville-area climbers can also get their fix at Redpoint on Raeford Road, which has 8,000 square feet of indoor climbing available for bouldering, top roping and lead climbing.

Indoor Skydiving

Jumping out of a plane and skydiving doesn’t sound very appealing during the chilly months, but skydiving is no longer limited to the great outdoors. Paraclete XP SkyVenture has made it possible for interested people, regardless of experience level, to skydive indoors. SkyVenture invented technology in 1998 that eliminates the possibility of flyers falling off the column of air in their indoor skydiving simulator. Including their location in Raeford, SkyVenture has twenty-three tunnels in operation around the world. Professional instructors are on-site to ensure this activity is safe for all ages and skill levels. The feel of freefalling in a safe environment keeps customers coming back to experience the thrill of this unique and fun indoor activity.


For those who want to stay active and have a competitive edge, bowling — that classic, indoor, family fun activity — may be an option to consider.

Fayetteville resident, Rita Munson, said she enjoys bowling with her husband and friends. “It’s a good way to socialize and to get up and do something,” Munson said.

There are three bowling alleys in Fayetteville: Lafayette Bowling Lanes, North View Lanes and B&B Lanes.

Prices for bowling and shoe rentals range from alley to alley; call or check their websites for prices and specials. Though you may not always bowl a strike, it is fun to at least get out there and try.

Roller Skating

Roller skating is a great indoor winter activity for families or large groups. Round-a-Bout Skating Center has two locations in Fayetteville: one at 71st Place on Raeford Road, and one in the Eutaw Shopping Center on Bragg Boulevard. Established in 1974, Round-a Bout Skating seeks to provide wholesome family fun and fitness to the Fayetteville community.

Roller skating offers many of the same benefits as jogging and may, consequently, suit joggers who seek shelter during the cold winter months but do not want to run on a treadmill. With the lights spinning and the music playing, roller skaters may have such a good time they forget they’re exercising.

Ice Skating

Ice skating, a true indoor winter sport, is a fun and affordable form of exercise for the entire family. Cleland Ice Rink is the only ice rink within a 60-mile radius that is open year-round.

“Ice skating is always a fun break,” said Raeford resident Kim Cote. “We go to get together with friends and it’s a good way to get exercise.”

The facility has a comprehensive ice skating program which includes open skating, group and private lessons and private ice rental. Cote’s husband and son also make use of the Cleland Ice Rink’s open hockey sessions during the week. Located on Fort Bragg, Cleland Ice Rink is easily accessible for both military and civilian skaters.

Although several hours on the couch watching television may be tempting during winter months, physical activity does not have to stop as the cold weather starts. There are plenty of indoor sports to choose from to keep you and your family physically fit and active until warmer weather returns.