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Rock Climbing Styles


Rock climbing can be divided into two main types i.e. indoor and outdoor rock climbing. There are a variety of styles of rock climbing. Two of the most common styles are: The Traditional and Sport style. Rock climbers use other styles too. Most of them prefer to use the style that suits them the best. This article will provide you with the different styles of rock climbing and its features.

Traditional style:

Traditional rock climbing is also commonly known amongst climber as trad climbing. A traditional rock climber is known as trad climber. This style involves exploration and establishment of new routes. This style requires a lot of skill including self control, gear placement, route finding, down hill climbing, etc. This style came into existence before the sport style of climbing. This style is unaided with permanent anchors to help while ascending. It is more physically and mentally challenging than sport climbing. A trad climber uses a rope and places nuts and hexes in crevices to ensure safety.

Sport style:

Sport style of climbing unlike traditional climbing lets the climber use permanent anchors for protection. These anchors are fixed to the rock face to assist the climb. Sport climbing requires gymnastics abilities, endurance and strength. Sport climbing is safer compared to traditional climbing. The gear too is different. It includes bolts and quick draws i.e. a small sling, which has carabiners on both ends. Sport climbing can be both indoor as well as outdoor. Indoor sport climbing developed because climbers wanted to practice climbing throughout the year.

Bouldering:

This style of climbing requires the climber to have great strength, endurance and concentration. The climber needs to use all these skills to work a way through the boulder route. This style is more dangerous and requires experience. This style is practiced indoors as well as the outdoors. While bouldering, climbers usually do not get their feet a couple of feet above the ground surface. Bouldering does not include any ropes or belay placed at the bas of the cliff. The only gear required for this type of rock climbing is shoes, crash pad and chalk. Bouldering involves a series of problems known as routes. These routes are series of moves a climber needs to practice over and over again. Additional moves will increase the challenge. It is advised that bouldering should not be done at great heights.

Solo style:

The solo climbing style is the most dangerous style of climbing. It is also considered by most of the climber as the freest style of climbing. This is so because the climbers climb alone i.e. without any partner, protection or rope. This style of climbing is best left to the experts. The main aim of such a climb is to reach the summit.

Ice climbing:

As the name suggests, this style of rock climbing includes climbing on ice. One does not need to be told that it is going to a cold climb. Ice climbing means climbing a vertical wall of ice and this ice wall may be formed by a frozen waterfall. The tools required for ice climbing are quite different from the tools used in the other styles of climbs.

 


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