The climbing is fashionable. More and more climbers are training on the climbing wall during the week and taking advantage of the weekend to climb on the rocks. However, climbing is a very serious sport, in which we must take into account a series of safety measures. Climbing in the climbing wall is not the same as climbing in the mountains, so it is important to know how to start climbing in the mountains and have some basic concepts clear before starting to open routes.
1. Choose the type of climbing you want to practice
There are different types of climbing depending on the surface and the use or not of rope. In the case of initiation to climbing, sport climbing is the most interesting option, since you will follow a route where the anchors have been placed previously. The climbing wall is also a good way to get started in this wonderful sport, while traditional climbing – the first to go up opens the way – is an intermediate level. Free climbing, psych bloc -cliffs over the sea, without rope- or ice climbing are modalities for experts.
2. Get the necessary equipment
There are some basic elements to get started in climbing. A comfortable trousers and a shirt that facilitate your movements are essential when practicing climbing, but there are a number of basic elements that any climber needs. The first, climbing shoes that facilitate grip on the wall. The second, a helmet -both for the climber and for the insurer- that protects us from blows, the fall of rocks or stones that come off the wall, etc. The third, a harness, although if you go out with veteran climbers it is easy to borrow it, both the harness and the helmet.
3. Contact veteran climbers to advise you
One of the best tips for beginner climbers who want to start in this sport is to find a group with more veteran climbers to accompany them in their first steps in this world. They will probably have no qualms about you accompanying them on their climbing outings, and they will teach you the basic climbing techniques, to put on the harness and do the 8, to use the rope well. Solidarity is one of the pillars of the climbing, and it will surely not take long to find a climbing group in which you feel comfortable.
4. Attention to the condition and quality of the tether rope
The rope is our life insurance, so before leaving you have to check that it is in perfect condition. You should never use a rope that is frayed, broken or in poor condition, as any serious accident can occur. Sometimes we can cut it, although the best option is always to buy a new one. To protect it, it should always be on the rope cover, even when climbing. Only in this way will you prevent it from snagging on large rocks, which could be damaged. In addition, you can use the rope cover as a blanket to eat or rest.
5. Learn the climbing technique
From the outside it seems that the arms are the most important part, but in reality the basis of climbing is in the strength of your central part of the body. Try to keep your arms straight whenever you can and your legs bent, which will allow you to push with your lower body more easily. You should also know how to hold hands and feet to the different supports with which you will find on the wall, whatever the size. Never lean on the plates or cutting elements, and do not forget the importance of a good technique to go down.
6. Find out about the weather conditions
Although it is difficult to include it in the tips to practice climbing, before going out you should always check the weather forecast. In the face of very windy or rainy days, it may be better to stay at home and opt for another activity -such as climbing in a climbing wall- so that the weather does not ruin a day of climbing. Don’t forget sunglasses, sunscreen, and something to cover up after climbing; and hot or cold hydration is very important.