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marcel richter


Marcel Richter has had a very special slackline career. He was born with very short arms and a malposition of the feet. But this handicap has not stopped him from becoming a sport enthusiast. He regularly climbs, skitours and since 2014 also slacklines. At the beginning mounting a line caused huge troubles, but he kept going and in the meantime he is able to send 40m lines. One of his big dreams is to walk on highlines one day.

SlackFaq's on Marcel's Slacklife

When did you start slacklining and how did you discover it?

In 2014 I stood on a slackline for the first time, a physiotherapist told me about it during a therapy session (therapeutic climbing) and asked if I wanted to try it. Due to my handicap it was difficult to mount the line in the beginning (very short arms, slight malposition of the feet). I made my first attempts in a park in Chemnitz in Germany. I quickly found interest in the sport.

Why do you love slacklining so much?

Walking on the slackline is relaxation for me. After a hard day at work, I love to be on the line, because I can completely block out the everyday life around me. Furthermore, I train my body tension on the line. In addition to the slackline, I also climb, both in the climbing hall and outside on the rock. Slackline training is the ideal compensation training.

What are your favorite slackline disciplines?

Longline and waterline. I would love to try a highline soon.

What is your favorite setup (webbing, line length, tension)?

My favorite webbings are the Marathon and pinkTube. I’m currently walking 40m safely. I like the line to be a little tighter.

Do you have a permanent rig?

No, but there is a small park nearby where I can set up my lines.
marcel richter garden slackline
Photo Credits: Birgit Standke, Fotografin Ehrwald
marcel richter waterlining
Photo Credits: Birgit Standke, Fotografin Ehrwald

How much do you train?

As soon as it’s warm I try to train 2 to 3 times a week.

What advice would you give to a slackline beginner?

If you try slacklining for the first time, it’s best to do it with a friend. Get a beginner line, fix it to no more than knee height. Tighten it rather tight. To get a better feeling for the line, try to walk barefoot or with sock-shoes, because it is much more wobbly with shoes. 

The length of the line should not exceed 10m, otherwise it will swing too much in the middle. Mount the line neither directly at the beginning nor exactly in the middle, but like 1.5m from the anchor point. 

Next you try out with which leg you have the best feeling to get on the line. Since it’s very wobbly at first, hold onto your friend’s hand to get a feel for the line. Then try to put the 2nd foot behind the first and bend your knees slightly. 

To keep your balance you should put your arms up and look forward, preferably at a point that is not moving. From now on you have to put one foot in front of the other and practice – practice – practice! Your training partner supports you by walking next to you and offering his arm if needed. After a short time you will see first successes and will be able to walk the line on your own.

What advice would you give to a slackline beginner?

I would like to be able to walk a highline and a longer waterline.

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