First Time?

What is CLimbing?

Welcome to the start of your climbing journey

If you’re already an experienced climber, head straight to the pre-register page, and we will see you soon.

Alternatively, read on to find out more about this fantastic sport and what to expect on your first visit with us.

‘Climbing’ is the catch-all term for all disciplines of the sport. Three disciplines were showcased at the 2020 Olympics:

  • Sport Climbing – Climbing up a higher wall with the added safety of a rope and harness. Roped climbing.
  • Speed Climbing – Racing an opponent up an identical 15-metre-high route
  • Bouldering – Climbing up to four metres above the protection of a mat

What is bouldering?

Bouldering is climbing stripped down to its raw essentials. There’s no complicated ropes or harnesses, and all you need is climbing shoes.

Your challenge is to climb short but interesting bouldering ‘problems’ using technique, balance, strength, and your brain. Watch the video here to get an idea of why you should give it a go!

The beauty of bouldering is that every problem has its own solution, and to climb it successfully, you need to figure it out. Depending on your body shape and personal strengths, your solution could be totally different to the next person’s. If you’re tall, you might be able to reach the next hold more easily on spaced-out problems but find yourself hindered when the route takes you into corners or grooves on the wall.

You don’t need experience or lots of expensive kit to have a go, making it easy to get into if you’ve never tried it before. The specialist climbing shoes are available to hire from reception or buy in our shop.

What is roped climbing?

Climbing with ropes usually involves two people, but it can also be done in a group. The person climbing the “route” is tied to a rope controlled by another person. Controlling the rope is called belaying and the person controlling the rope is the belayer. Within this, there are two main ways of climbing indoors with ropes: top roping and lead climbing.

Top roping is where the climbing rope is already in place. The rope is threaded through an anchor at the top of the climbing wall. The person climbing ties in to one end of the rope, and the belayer manages the other end of the rope, taking in the slack as the climber ascends the climbing wall. 

Lead climbing is a more advanced technique where the climber clips in the rope themselves as they climb up the route.

Can my kids climb?

Of course!

Find out more…

I want to give it a go!

Just visit our pre-register page, and book your class. If you are over 18, you can watch the bouldering induction video, turn up and go bouldering. NB Your wont be able to supervise children unless you are already an experienced climber.

Can I climb with an instructor on my first visit?

Of course you can! We run a range of classes, and we recommend one of our Roped or Bouldering Taster sessions. Great for families, groups or individuals wanting to try climbing.

What will my first visit be like?

Starting a new sport can be daunting, but we are here to help. Here is how most first sessions roll out.

  • Once you arrive, you will complete your registration at reception. If you are 18+ and have opted to boulder self suppervised, we will ask a couple of safety questions from the induction video, so please ensure that you watch it.
  • We recommend renting climbing shoes if you don’t have your own. The fit should feel snug but not painful. If you have opted for an instructed session, all your equipment hire is included and your instructor will help you with this.
  • We have changing areas and lockers at each of our Centres should you wish to change or store valuables.
    If you are self supervising, make sure you warm up thoroughly before you start climbing, and check out the grade charts so you start on the easiest colours. We recommend starting easy! If you are on instructed session, your instructor will guide you through a good warm up.
  • Pace yourself, taking a couple of minutes rest between climbs, and use chalk to keep your hands dry and your grip secure.
  • Climbing is tiring, especially if you are not used to it. We recommend 60-90 minutes with plenty of rest between goes.
  • Climbing centres are sociable environments where everyone tries to solve the climbs on the wall. Get chatting, and you’ll likely unlock a new technique.
  • We serve refreshments and have seating areas if you would like a more extended break, and our gym facilities allow you to mix up your training sessions.
  • When you’re done, head back to reception to drop off your hire kit, shoes etc.
  • All our centres have individual showers if you want to freshen up.
  • Expect to ache the next day! This is normal, and your body will adapt with a few more sessions. You will also learn more techniques to ensure you climb more efficiently.

Our team is always happy to help if you have any questions during your session.