Rock climbing is an adventure activity in which a person will climb up, over, and across natural rock formations either to reach the top of the peak or rock face, or the end of pre-determined route.
Rock climbing can be done on both vertical faces of rock, such as mountain cliffs, or on peaks where the aim is usually to reach the apex of the peak. Climbing organisations can provide you with a list of climbing courses and routes to suit your level of experience.
Rock climbing is a very demanding sport that will test both your mental and physical limits. It can be dangerous and the use of appropriate equipment, as well as knowledge and experience of correct climbing techniques is essential.
There are a few terms that relate to rock climbing and are important to know. Scrambling, for instance, is when a person’s hands are used merely for balance, whereas during climbing the hands are used to hold the person’s weight.
Bouldering is a type of rock climbing that is usually done without a rope, over a short climb, so that if a person falls they will not be seriously injured. It is usually done over large boulders, at the bottom of a large face of rock, and even on some buildings. Bouldering is often done to show off as the climbing requires great physical strength, and there are often a number of difficult obstacles in the way. Traditional rock climbing, on the other hand, is more a test of endurance and the route is much simpler.
Mountaineering refers to the act of climbing mountains in general, and includes activities such as walking, hiking, rock climbing, and bouldering, among others. The chosen route can be over rock, snow or ice, with each of these requiring specific, tools, knowledge and experience in order to keep the climb safe.
There are a number of training centres that offer qualified rock climbing courses, and will provide you with the necessary equipment. Most centres offer training for groups of any size, including large groups such as at corporate events. There are also a number of shops that specialise in rock climbing gear.