Frequently Asked Questions

The FAQ is always in a constant state of update.  If there is a link that doesn’t exist yet, give it a few weeks! (Or email me asking for a video of something specific.)

What do I need to start slacklining?

You’ll either need a slackline setup, or a buddy who doesn’t mind sharing. A typical beginner setup is around $50, or closer to $100 if you buy a kit. For your first experience, it’s probably best to wait to purchase to make sure you actually enjoy slacklining; plus it helps to get a few tips from a more experienced slacker. If you’d like to try slacklining, drop me a line (adam at nwslackline dot org), or pop over to our Facebook wall and see when the next group of people is getting together.

Who sells slacklines?  Where can I buy one?
Slacklines are made from climbing gear (tubular 1″ webbing, and carabiners), so any rock climbing shop or good outdoor fitter (like REI, EMS, Fontana, etc) will have the stuff you need.  It is generally cheaper to buy the stuff yourself and assemble your own slackline kit.  That said, there are many retailers who will sell you a “complete” kit, requiring no effort on your part.  Most of these kits have little customizations made by each company based on their philosophy of how a slackline should be setup, and there is no right or wrong way, but you may find you do not like some of the ways (for instance, I strongly dislike ratchets for tightening lines; although they are easier to learn how to use they are somewhat dangerous to both people and equipment).  If you want to make your own slackline for $40-60, go here.  If you want to buy a pre-made kit, I would recommend:

  • Balance Community.  This slackline company started by Jerry Miszewski has developed a lot of new types of lines and other equipment specifically for the sport.  He and I share many views on how to most effectively setup lines, what constitutes safety, etc.  His philosophy leads to very safe, durable, and efficient gear, in the in the last few years he has moved beyond “being a source for hard to find rescue and climbing stuff that works well for slackline” and into the realm of “designing totally innovative and better adapted stuff specifically for slackline.”  For a 1″ slackline setup this is basically a one-stop-shop.
  • Gibbon Slacklines.  Gibbon created the first widely popular 2″ trickline, and has revolutionized the entire sport. Tricklining is a bit different from regular slackline. To figure out what is best for your style, see here.  The 2″ tricklines are probably the most widely commercially available slacklines (if you want to go to a store and buy a “kit” right now), and they are now moving into the 1″ slackline market.
  • Slackline Brothers.  Founded by some of the originators of the first wave of slackline in the US, this company has recently been acquired by Andy Lewis.  Their bomber steel pulley design (super innovative when it was first dreamed up 10 years ago, and still pretty darn cool) is back in production.  This was the first pulley system I owned, and although not as efficient as other pulleys of the same price, it does have an integrate brake and so might be worth considering over aluminum brakeless pulleys for a longline or highline setup.
BASIC SLACKLINE INFO

  • Where can I slackline in Seattle? [info] (and here are all the posts tagged with “location“)
  • How can I make a slackline for cheap by buying stuff at REI? [info]
  • Okay I bought a slackline, how do I set it up? [info] [video]
  • Does you ever do this hundreds up feet up? [info]
  • Who runs NWslackline? Can you help me, or can I try your slackline? [info]
TECHNICAL

  • Is there a better way to rig a slackline than tying knots/hitches? [info]
  • What can I do to protect the trees I anchor to? [info] [link to product developed by NWslackline]
  • My yard doesn’t have trees, can I build A-frames? [external link]
  • Is there slackline material stronger than 4,000lbs, or with a different “feel?” [info]
  • How do I setup a slackline longer than 100ft? [youtube video playlist page] [link to first of 5 installments, video+text]
  • How can I get a 30-50ft line really tight by myself? [info]
  • Where can I buy 2″ forged aluminum rings?  What about 1″?  What about 1.5″?  What about steel? [email me for now]
  • Is there a spreadsheet of the different webbings and their weights and strengths and such? [info]
  • Is there a photo gallery of the weaves of different webbings up close? [coming soon]
TRICKS

  • It’s my first time, what should I do?  Start here to learn how to balance and then walk.
  • How do I walk backwards? It’s as easy as walking forwards, I promise, just try it and you’ll see.
  • How do I turn? [info]
  • How do I sit mount? [info]
  • How do I Chongo mount? [info]
  • How do I walk out from the end? [info]
  • How do I sit cross legged? [info]
  • How do I surf? [info]
  • How do I learn to jump? [info]
  • How do I backflip? [info]
  • What is the record for highest/longest/etc slackline? [info]
LEGAL / ACCESS

  • Is slacklining in Washington and Seattle parks legal? [Yes! However ... info]
  • I don’t live in Washington, how do I know if slackline is legal in my locality? [info]
COMMUNITY

  • Is there a NWslackline facebook group? [info]
  • Is there a repository of slackline world records? [info]