Preparation | Highlining 101

“Practice everything that you can at home.”


If you are going to a highline festival or invited to a highline project, then you don’t want to waste that precious opportunity trying to figure out things you could have learned at home in the park. We make sure you have the right gear, know how to use it and can mount the line and stand up on it. There is a lot more to highlining than just the walking part and we observe “newbies” exerting a lot of energy on things they shouldn’t, wearing themselves out, limiting the amount of time they can enjoy the fun parts of highlining.


Some preparation tips:

- Learn your harness before you need to use it:

  • How to put it on

  • How tight it needs to be

  • If it is auto locking or requires double backing

- Practice tying a figure 8 to your harness before going highlining

- DON’T PRACTICE WALKING A SLACKLINE IN THE PARK WITH A LEASH. It could flip you upside down hitting your head on the ground. We need to fall feet first in the park and head first on highlines so this cannot be practiced in the park.

- Practice climbing a leash in the park on either a slackline just above your head or tied around some monkey bars

- Climb a leash by flipping upside down, putting a foot, thigh or shin on the leash, then reaching over to pull yourself up high enough to grab the highline

- Practice mounting (going from underneath to on top) on a slackline that is high enough that you don’t hit your back on the ground when you hang underneath. Use your legs as counterweights to flip over to the top of the line

- Practice line sliding in the park on a line high enough in the middle that your butt doesn’t rub against the ground. Please don’t walk on slacklines that are too high to fall off safely.

  • Get comfortable going from one anchor to another

  • Gently test what happens when you aren’t straight so you can see how it rubs the edges of the webbing

  • Practice clipping and unclipping it while hanging on from underneath

  • Play with different keeper sling options (so you don’t drop it)

- Practice slacklining in the park (obviously) but not just tight lines, practice loose lines as well as many highlines feel like that more often than tight park lines

- You CANNOT practice falling for highlining in the park. You must fall head first and do a flip each time you whip on a highline to not get thrashed around by your leash and this you can only visualize to prepare, or watch lots of highline videos

- Prepare your backpack

  • You will need 2 liters of water on a normal day and 4 liters on a hot day

  • Bring snacks that sound delicious (and not just sugar) because after you have adrenaline in your system you won’t feel like eating

  • You may also need sunscreen, bug spray, toilet paper, camera, and something to contribute to the team

  • Bring empty space! Have a bag empty enough to help carry gear.

If you have feedback, additional information, more correct information, or just good ol' typos that need fixing, please email me at or leave a comment below.


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