Ask any entrepreneur for their bucket list and a good many respond: climbing a peak, trekking, bungee jumping, running a marathon or some other adventure sport. Given the usual complaints of lack of time, cost and even safety, adventure sports like climbing are usually short lived, one time activities providing instant adrenaline rush.
With Wildcraft being funded and players like Thrillophilia coming into play, adventure as a space is getting noticed. Astha Chaturvedi, the Founder of Urban Climbers, is creating an organised platform for adventure to be practiced safely.
Astha aims to address the ‘Outdoor deficit disorder’ in the current generation by crossing the huge lifestyle barrier of ‘I don’t have the time’. Urban Climbers delivers the experience literally at the customer’s doorstep, ready to display demonstrate or deploy.
Astha is not new to the world of adventure. She had done kayaking, trekking and climbing since childhood. Her stay in the US from 2005-2009 made her realise the application of climbing as a commercial business. It was then that the idea of Urban Climbers began taking root.
In the last quarter of 2012, due to circumstance that required her undivided attention Astha had to quit her high flying corporate job. By now the desire to see Urban Climbers up and running had reached its tipping point and Astha had stated working towards it.
While gearing for a marathon, Astha sustained severe injuries that resulted in her kneecap being crushed in several pieces. After a few days of being depressed she got into action. With one leg and a lot of time spent in bed, she chalked out the entire plan for project Urban Climbers. Urban Climbers was started in April 2013 with Astha’s sheer grit and determination.
The journey so far
The journey has been very exciting for Astha. “I am not saying it’s been easy but it definitely has us rocking all the time. We have learnt a lot.”
According to her, retail space in India is one of the biggest barriers in any business. Urban Climbers overcame this barrier by putting to good use an otherwise dead space in a building. It spent some money on R&D for creating climbing surface, and with that thought, ran one prototype just to see who will climb, what will it take to set up? Astha say, “That one wall proved one step in the right direction; it just opened the doors for us.”
Help has poured in from friends, from people who climb with them, from people who hear about them and even from so many of people outside India who have seen them, applauded them and come forth with advice on how to move forward.