All About Rock Climbing:
Rock climbing is becoming a more and more popular sport with the evolution of climbing walls and climbing clubs in most towns and cities!
As such the sport itself has evolved into many disciplines with sport climbing, traditional climbing, bouldering and various offshoots of these!
How to Climb:
To climb, whether you are doing it at an indoor climbing wall or outdoor rock face, there are certain basic safety rules you need to learn. Climbing is done in pairs, with one person belaying and the other person climbing. The belayer ensures the safety of the climber, by holding the other end of the rope with a special friction device to stop it slipping.
If the climber is leading they will put in protection as they climb up and clip the rope into this. If climbers are using a top rope, the rope will be clipped into a 'belay' (bolts in the rock or other protection usually set up with 3 points of contact with the rock) at the top of the climb and as they climb up the belayer pulls the rope through.
Climbing grades differ in different countries so it is best to take a comparison guide with you when travelling somewhere else to make sure you know what grades you climb correspond to!
Learn the knots - these are your safety so should become second nature. The most basic knot is the figure of eight!
Go bouldering - this is a great way of learning how to move your body over rock, practice moves and problem solve on rock at ground level so you can't fall very far!
Keep calm - climbing is all about mind over matter. It's normal to feel scared when you are 10 metres up a sheer cliff. The trick is to manage your fear and bak it work for you!
Use your whole body - don't just rely on your arms to haul you up. Use your body and push up with your legs - these have your strongest muscles!