Sport climbing is a sport that originated from traditional rock climbing. In sport climbing, permanent anchors fixed to the rock are used for climbing. The primary focus of the sport is on strength, endurance, speed and difficulty of moves.
Some of the equipment used for sport climbing are, ropes, quickdraws, belayers, and harnesses. Additionally, some climbers use specialized shoes and chalk powder for better grip.
Sport climbing routes vary in length and difficulty. Routes vary from single pitch short length routes that test speed, to multi-pitch marathons that test endurance. Most sport climbing competitions have routes that are relatively short; usually less than 30 meters, with a steep ascent.
The sport of sport climbing had a major boost in 2021 when it was included on the Olympic program for the first time. At the Olympics, the sport climbing competition has three main disciplines, which are:
- Lead Climbing — The objective is to climb a route within a pre-determined timeframe. The climbers that reach the highest point are declared the winners.
- Speed Climbing — The objective is to climb a set vertical route in the fastest time possible. The team or individual that clocks the fastest time is declared as the winner.
- Bouldering — Competitors attempt to climb a series of fixed routes of increasing difficulty.
- Para-climbing — sports rock climbing for disabled athletes
- Ice Climbing — athletes climb vertical ice formations with the use of ropes.
- Mountaineering — the sport of mountain climbing.
- Pole Climbing — involves climbing very high wooden poles.
- Rope Climbing — competitors climb up a rope using only their hands.
- Tree Climbing — competitions in which competitors climb trees as fast as possible using various techniques based on the daily working conditions of arborists.
- Tower Running — grueling races up tall man-made structures. Also known as Stair Climbing.
- Abseiling — participants descend a steep formation using a rope. It is also known as rappeling, roping down, roping and snapling. (not a sport)
- Sports Climbing at the Olympics
- All about Sports Climbing
- Complete list of sports
- The Encyclopedia of Sports