Head Rush Tech Blog
zip line handle

Does My Zip Line Trolley Need A Handle?

There are a lot of options out there when it comes to zip line trolleys. It’s easy to get overwhelmed by the vast number of choices. With all of the competing products out there, how are you supposed to find the right fit for your zip line? A good place to start is figuring out if you need a zip line trolley with a handle. Zip line handles are great for a number of reasons. They give riders control over their orientation, reduce injury risk and give psychological support by providing an added sense of security.

Allowing riders to have control over their orientation improves the rider’s experience and decreases injury risk. If your zip line course has beautiful scenic views then your riders will appreciate the ability to actually see your magnificent landscape. If your zip line does not have a trolley with a handle then your rider could twist and turn randomly, leaving them staring at dilapidated pine tree branches instead of a beautiful snow-capped mountain range. Having a handle allows zip liners to face the direction of their choice so they can take in everything your course has to offer.

Impact Trolley Landing ZoneZip line trolleys with a handles do more than improve participants’ experiences. Maintaining a forward facing orientation on a zip line decreases the risk of injury. Without a handle, zip line participants are more likely to enter the landing zone backwards. This can lead to a large upswing and the rider making dangerous contact with the cable above.

No zip line operator wants to see riders getting injured on their zip line. Using a zip line trolley with a handle gives more control over how participants enter the landing zone. More control means less variance and more predictability. All of which are great for reducing injury risk.

Zip line handles can also increase the psychological comfort of your zip line participants. Apprehensive zip liners will feel an added sense of security when they are able to hold onto a handle. Anxiety could stem from any number of underlying fears. Novice zip liners might feel anxious because of the extreme speeds and heights associated with zip lining. They might not trust the zip line gear to keep them safe. Whatever the reason, holding onto a handle will give them some added confidence.

For these reasons zip line handles are more than just a luxury. They can be a practical addition to your zip line. Zip line trolleys with handles will help you improve participants’ enjoyment of your zip line, their safety and their comfort. Some zip line handles will only provide a few of these benefits. Head Rush Technologies engineered the Impact Trolley to address all these issues.

Many zip line trolleys have fixed handles. Fixed handles have two main downsides; they increase injury risk and create excessive wear. If a fixed handle is used in conjunction with passive braking there is the possibility that a rider will smack their face on the handle. If you’re not familiar with passive braking you should check out this Deep Dive Into the Pros and Cons of Different Zip Line Brakes, which explains the difference between active and passive braking.

During passive braking the rider will inevitably experience a slight upswing when they come into contact with the passive brake. In some cases this momentum brings the rider into contact with the zip line trolley’s handle. The Impact Trolley prevents this issue by utilizing a pivoting handle. This design allows the handle to naturally move with the rider during the slight inevitable upswing. The movement of the handle prevents the rider from smacking their face into the handle itself.

The pivoting handle also keeps the Impact Trolley in contact with the zip line cable. With fixed handles the momentum of the rider will partially force the trolley off of the zip line cable creating wear on both the trolley and the cable. When a portion of the trolley lifts of the cable, the remaining section still in contact with the cable has to deal with all the remaining friction and force. All of this friction is focused in one location, which increases wear. The pivoting handle of the Impact Trolley avoids this problem and as a result creates a smoother braking experience.

The handle on the Impact Trolley is only one available feature that improves customer experience, decreases wear and reduces risk. The Impact Trolley can be outfitted with several different optional accessories or none at all. This versatility makes the Impact Trolley perfect for a wide variety of installations. If you want to learn more about the benefits of the other Impact Trolley accessories, you should read this article about how one Impact Trolley accessory can double the efficiency of your zip line.

Jeremy Wicker