Argyo Papathanasiou


Argyo Papathanasiou

Argyo Papathanasiou

Argyro grew up in nature in the Greek seas and lakes listening her whispers and admiring her colors and life. She never practiced any kind of sports in particular but her dad took the family walking in the mountains, bicycling, running on the beaches, hanging from a pull up bar, canoeing in the lakes, swimming in the sea. She started practicing taekwon do at the age of 17 and evolved very quickly, competing for the Greek national team. Meanwhile she was traveling and doing other activities in nature like caving, which is how she discovered climbing. In two years time taekwon do and all other martial arts that she practiced were all replaced by climbing. Argyo feel very lucky to live in Greece with numerous crags in Athens (40 of them) and throughout the country. She was lucky at the beginning of her climbing life to meet lots of inspiring people and travel with them, feel their spirit and craziness and feel that she was a part of this world before even she knew it. It felt like home.

Discipline: Climbing

Hometown: Athens, Greece

Currently Living: All around enjoying beauty of nature

Height: 169 cm

Career Highlights:  Aurevoir (8b+/c) Pedeli Cave, Athens; Onsight of Fun de Chicune (8a), Kalymnos; Onsight of Debout le morts (8a), Galatiani Cave, Kalymnos; Climbing the Salathe Wall, Yosemite; Winning several bouldering and rope competitions in Greece; Redpointing some cool 8b’s in Siurana: Pati Pa Mi and Brott de fonoll 

When did you first start climbing/skiing?

When I was 23 years old in a random caving excursion, they put up a rope on a small cliff and I climbed barefoot! I loved it! That was it, since then I never stopped! I started by climbing in the mountains with friends that liked trad climbing. Then I thought I would like to become stronger to climb better in the mountains and sera sera!!

What do you most enjoy about your sport?

Being free in nature, reaching my own limits, traveling around the world to climb and meeting interesting people!

How do you define success? 

When I feel happy and satisfied with myself and I make others happy as well always in respect of nature.

What are you most proud of, either in life, your sport or both?

Being able to complete my goals, my projects and realize whatever I have imagined. And I am happy that there were plenty of moments like this! From entering in the very hard to enter fine art university of Athens, becoming a champion in Taekwondo, learning a healing art like Thai yoga massage, to sending my climbing projects and being a nice dog mom to my female labrador and grandmother of 16 puppies! That’s a success!

Who are your heroes?

When I practiced martial arts it was Bruce lee, I guess. And since I became a climber, Lynn Hill, Wolfgang Güllich and all my brave friends!

What inspires you?

Nature, wilderness, amazing, genuine and authentic people. History, art as way of living combined with sports! I am inspired from lives lived at their maximum and best possible way! Action, Love, Sharing, Caring, Smiling, Truth. Added to all these feelings that come from the heart.

What are your hobbies outside of your sport?

Singing , painting, learning new languages, playing some music, reading some good books, using my imagination.

What’s your guilty pleasure?

Sweets, frozen yogurt with dark chocolate almonds and strawberries.

What are your hidden talents?

If they are still hidden I will wait for them to appear!

Tell us about your most favorite place in the world:

Anywhere in the Hug of Earth! It’s hard to choose a place! Maybe an empty beach on the Aegean Sea next to my country house where I grew up. Sun, sea, rock and cold sweet water running in the sea like a river under the beach! For climbing I love Siurana, Yosemite and I have never been yet but Madagascar sounds dreamy!!

As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?

I signed my paintings like a painter. But amazon women warriors coming from the greek mythology seemed very familiar!

If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be, and why? 

I am happy the way I am so far, and at the same moment I try to change for the better every single day. So I guess not change but adjust my mindset according to the situation. Be flexible in my mind like with my body. And maybe calm down a bit my emotions some times. I really live my life with my feelings.

Tell us about a time in your life when you have been scared:

I have been scared sometimes while exposed in the mountains but most of all, when i was belaying and holding tight on the rope, I heard and saw all the pieces of protection coming out one by one (rusted piton, small Friend, a nut) and my friend falling to the ground with me running after him to catch him just before falling off the ledge. Fortunately he survived with a helicopter arriving within 15 min and he is alright now. And another time I was kind of scared is at my first storm while camping on the glacier in Mont Blanc. Outside was crazy but my friends were relaxed cooking and playing music so I got over it!

Describe your perfect day:

Wake up, cuddle with my dog Daila for a good while (if i am in a really good mood I will let her jump in bed and sleep some more with me). Then have a big tasty breakfast along with some tea or juice, listen to some music or play the piano, sing and dance for stretching with my favorite song, do some yoga or meditation, meet up with my best friends and have a nice adventure together with lots of laughing, climbing or exploring or both! Then being extremely tired, a simple dinner and feeling satisfied with my day, falling in a deep sleep with some interesting dream to remember when I wake up for my next perfect day.

How would your friends describe you?

A bit crazy, social, smiling all the time, creative.