- 1 10 Indoor Rock Climbing Techniques and Tips
It’s hard to believe that Rock-Climbing falls within the same sphere of aerobic exercises as something like Running or Biking. So, you can imagine how hard indoor rock climbing techniques are. Hanging 50 or 60 feet off the ground, dangling by just a piece of rope, seems decidedly more difficult and risky than running on the ground. Because of the fear of getting off the ground, Rock-Climbing has always seemed like an inaccessible sport or workout. It doesn’t help that not everyone has a mountain in their backyard.
But with indoor climbing walls, that hurdle doesn’t seem to matter anymore. In fact, once you get past the initial fear of falling to your death, you can actually really enjoy the sport, and it doesn’t take much long to get a hang of either. Also, it’s a great workout for your whole body.
It builds upper-body strength, helps maintain cardiovascular fitness, and it’s a decent workout for the mind as well as you have to constantly think about where to step next. You can’t simply zone out as you might while running.
10 Indoor Rock Climbing Techniques and Tips
Anyway, if you’re a beginner looking to start Indoor Rock Climbing, here’s a couple of techniques and tips you might wanna focus on.
#1. Footwork Drills
You need to work on your footwork even before you start climbing. There are some interesting and helpful warm-up exercises you could work on. For example, you could slowly place each foot down over the hold, and then pause over the hold for a second trying to decide how best to place your foot.
Gently position your foot, and avoid the instinct of adjusting your foot right after or scuffing against the wall.
#2. Select your Style
There are several different types of Rock Climbing techniques and means. You need to know what you’re looking for. You could go for Rope Climbing, which is scaling high walls with a rope with a belay partner, or with auto-belay. However, if you’re afraid of heights, you could also opt for Bouldering, which is a type of rock climbing without ropes, because the boulders are shorter.
If you want to do something outdoors, you could opt for Sport Climbing where a climber has to go by a route with anchors. And there are others out there as well for the more advanced climbers.
#3. Gearing Up
This is important. As for the shoes, you should wear something soft, nothing padded, so you can amply feel the grooves and ridges underneath your feet. You should avoid socks, preferably, or even if you wear them use thin ones.
For bouldering, you’ll only need a chalk bag other than your shoes. But if you go for Rope Climbing you’ll need a proper gear with harness, lead rope, carbines and a belay device as well.
#4. Learn the Ropes
Before you start climbing those rocks you need to understand how to Belay. In fact, if you intend to go about it on your own, you need to be belay-certified. Reading isn’t enough. You need real practice.
Some of the things that a class would cover are, how to tie a figure-eight and fishermen’s knot to secure the rope. There are also a lot of other training techniques you need to master in a proper class before you can get certified.
#5. Route – To Denote Difficult Levels
Your routes have different grades to denote difficulty levels. For example, with Rope Climbing they start 5, followed by a decimal. 5.5 or 5.6 is for beginners, and as the decimals rise higher so does the difficulty.
Bouldering Routes are marked with V, starting with V0. Your route is usually marked with a color, and you need to stick to it and not move over to another route.
#6. Core Building
While Rock Climbing certainly brings in the necessity of having upper-body strength, it is actually far more important to build core strength, which is why exercises like Yoga and Gymnastics helps.
#7. Arm Postures
You should keep your arms straight as that makes them far less likely to get tired. Keeping them bent will exhaust your muscles and bones. However, your legs need to be bent mostly so that they can offer better support to your body and help push you upwards.
#8. Plan Ahead
Even before you start climbing you should have your general route laid out. You should have identified where you’re going to place your hands and legs and in which sequence. You should also have learnt to notice chalks on the holds to indicate that other climbers have used them, and rubber marks to identify footwork.
#9. Lingo – For Better Communication
To be able to better communicate with your Belay partner you need to have the general Lingo down, so that there is no miscommunication and you don’t waste you breath in complicated explanations for simple actions.
These commands are generally of a reciprocal nature, the climber says something and the player responds, like “Lower”, “Ok, Lowering.” These are also generally one word type responses to save time and energy.
Once you’ve reached the top and are absolutely ready to come down, you should give the command “Lower” to your Belay partner, who would then get ready for you to either bounce off, or leap off, against the wall with your feet and gently rope you down, or for you to steadily come down the way you went up.
Now that you have gathered some tips on Indoor Rock Climbing, it is time to go try out these Indoor Rock Climbing Techniques.