The main feature at Cliffhanger this year was undoubtedly the British Bouldering Championships (UKC VIDEO: British Bouldering Championships - Winners), however future champions were drawn to the intriguing little wall just off to the left of the main competition wall.
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Although small in size the Alpkids wall contained 10 mini problems offering kids aged from 4-8 the chance to throw some shapes and mimic just what the adults were doing in the big competition. But it wasn't just for the kids because the idea of Alpkids on the Blocs was to give the whole family an introduction to outdoor bouldering in a safe and fun environment.
© Alpkit, Jul 2009
Each session began with a 10 minute briefing from Alpkit bloc masters Dan and Pete. Each family team was provided with a helmet, a Phud crash pad, a score sheet and a Dipper chalk bag which they could keep to take away at the end of the session. For many this was their first taste of climbing so safety awareness and fun were high priorities and parents in particular were taught how to curb their excitement and 'spot' in safety!
Once fully briefed the teams headed out around the blocs with their crash pads and parents in tow. There was a mixture of pure ascents, combined tactics, gritty determination, a few tears but lots and lots of smiles. Over the course of the weekend Alpkids on the Blocs provided entertainment for over 80 kids including the Moffatt and Bransby families.
The winning partnership from each of the sessions won a copy of Paul Smiths 'Climbing Games' book, an excellent source of inspiration for parents whos children have caught the climbing bug.
If you happened to be there and have any feedback on the event then please let us know.
Alpkids enjoying a piece of the action under the big stage.
© Alpkit, Jul 2009
In addition to the main event Alpkit also launched a new range of organic Alpkid tshirts and hoodies including a specific Alpkids on the Blocs Tee. For more info check out www.alpkid.com
Alpkids on the Blocs was part of the Cliffhanger - www.cliff-hanger.co.uk - outdoor festival held in Sheffield last weekend (11-12 July).
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