Sterling Athletes Team
Name: Audrey Sniezek
How did you get started climbing? Some friends in University tried it out and suggested I come along on one of their outings. We didn't have any gyms in the area and if you found a wall that was taller than you, that was as good as it would get. This cliff is about 20 feet tall and stretches along a river basin for some ways. Most of it is not climbable, but the initial stretch just after the descent is quite good. Unfortunately, being so close to the city means there can be a fair bit of spray paint and carvings on the wall. It has gotten at times really bad over the years. When I was learning to climb there, defacement was minimal and the rock was quite grippy. It was a really nice escape from the world, only 10 minutes outside the University.
How old were you when you started? 21
Who or what inspired you to start climbing? I tried climbing with my University friends and loved it. I would get away as often as I could to go there and climb, even just to traverse alone. I found my climbing relaxing and meditative and at the same time challenging. I often left the cliff feeling rejuvenated. If there was any one person I could attribute with inspiring me it would have to be my University boyfriend for his interest and support in the sport at that time as well.
Who served as your inspiration in life? When I was younger, it was my older brother. As I got older, it was my best friend in High School-she changed my life and I am ever grateful for her influence. To this day, I admire her character. Today, I am inspired by the talent that surrounds me both in my career and in my climbing.
What was your first outdoor climb? Confidence Builder at Roxboro in Cleveland Heights, Oh.
What do you do when you're not climbing? I work full-time in a development team for a cutting edge technology. If I have any time left, I try to catch up with friends, take in a movie, experience the art of yoga, or anything random and fun!
Any training advice or suggestions? Try less. :-)
What do you feel is your best accomplishment, outside of climbing? I had a 20 minute, one-on-one meeting with Bill Gates-a rare opportunity for less than 1% of the company. This is a testament to the hard work I have put in to creating a successful career for myself.
What do you feel is your best accomplishment within climbing? Finding within myself the ability to develop other's climbing skills.
Favorite quote? "...If you cannot understand that there is something in man which responds to the challenge of this mountain and goes out to meet it, that the struggle is the struggle of life itself upward and forever upward, then you won't see why we go. What we get from this adventure is just sheer joy. And joy is, after all, the end of life. We do not live to eat and make money. We eat and make money to be able to enjoy life. That is what life means and what life is for."
-- George Leigh Mallory, 1922
If you could have 1 superpower what would it be? Heal pain.
If you could have 3 wishes, what would they be? (no wishing for more wishes)
1. That all people in this world would put the welfare and preservation of all on this planet before anything else
2. "Go Go Gadget arms" - sometimes I just need another inch or two in my reach!
What was your favorite childhood cartoon? Bugs Bunny (and all his friends) had to be up there. Pinky and the Brain and the Animaniacs were pretty good, too.