UKC

/ FEATURE: Social Climbers - The Evolving Indoor Climbing Industry

Please Register as a New User in order to reply to this topic.
UKC Articles - on 05 Jul 2018
Indoor climbing has become a sport in its own right., 4 kbNatalie Berry explores the growing indoor climbing wall industry and the opportunities and challenges that a boom in popularity presents...

Figures from the Association of British Climbing Walls (ABC) demonstrate that around 1 million people currently climb independently indoors in the UK, including about 100,000 regulars.* Of these, 59% are estimated to climb exclusively indoors. No longer can 'indoor climbing' be lumped with hillwalking and mountaineering in sports participation questionnaires, argue the ABC.



Read more
pneame on 05 Jul 2018
In reply to UKC Articles:

Long and thoughtful-looking article - I shall read later...

But the title, I loved. When I was young and obnoxious (as opposed to old and obnoxious) I used to get vast pleasure from conversations that went like:

"Are you climber?" in a tone of some interest

"Just a social climber"

Dead silence. End of any possible need to interact with a fellow human being.  

Luke90 on 05 Jul 2018
In reply to UKC Articles:

"We are working on the development of a national competency card"

Interesting comment from the ABC guy. If they can pull it off well, it would be nice to get rid of that extra irritant in going to a new wall. Does anybody know roughly what proportion of walls are ABC members?

Mind you, if it requires me to carry an extra card around with me, it's unlikely to be much use.

Andrew Kin - on 05 Jul 2018
In reply to UKC Articles:

That's pretty in depth.

Just so I don't get lynched.  When I said contradictory, I meant it in the nicest possible way.  Everyone involved in climbing has been fantastic to us. 

 

 

Lord_ash2000 - on 05 Jul 2018
In reply to UKC Articles:

Reading that makes me feel really old school, and when I was a kid just starting out in climbing at the local indoor wall I was considered one of the 'new' generation of wall bread climbers who'll be the downfall of the sport and that was 20 years ago.  It's true though, walls are changing, big, steep lead walls are getting rarer, it's all bouldering now and most of the bouldering centres are all about cafe's and chill out areas etc, how much cake can we sell to the mums while the kids do an intro course and what not.

And all for perfectly reasonable business reasons of course. The problem is "real climbers" as in people who actually take the wider sport seriously, make for pretty crap customers. We only go when it's raining, probably have members rates, we'll bring our own snacks and bottle of water while demanding big expensive climbing surfaces to climb on with regularly changed high quality climbs on them and spend 4 hours on it. Compare that to a bunch of kids who'll pay more, probably spend the same again on food and snacks + their parents will have an overpriced coffee and they'll be happy with an hour session scrabbling about on any old bit of plywood with some bright coloured holds chucked on it. 

It's already getting to the stage now where I and a lot of people I know rarely visit proper indoor walls now. If we can't get outdoors or it's wet we'll often just retreat to small private training boards because the big centres just don't offer enough for us anymore, we are just not the focus anymore. When we do go, it's normally just a milage session and within two sessions we've done everything we can climb or would want to climb and then that's it for six weeks until they re-set a suitably hard set. 

Indoor climbing has fallen to the hip punters and kids parties and there is not a lot we can do about it. 

Post edited at 23:36
Offwidth - on 06 Jul 2018
In reply to Lord_ash2000:

I'm surrounded by walls owned by regular outdoor climbers and sensitive to the needs of all the climbers using them, be they mainly outdoor climbers visiting on rainy days or dedicated indoor folk or anything in between, all of whom seem to get on really well. You seem to me tt be making your own silo or maybe being very unlucky in where you live. Yes there are kids parties but that helps keep the entry prices down. The relative increase in bouldering facilities seem to me to have aided in this genuiniely mixed demographic having fun or trying hard to improve together.

Post edited at 04:33
paul__in_sheffield - on 06 Jul 2018
In reply to UKC Articles:

^^ What Offwidth says, same in Sheffield, and the other walls I frequent like Eden Rock, Climbing Unit, Beacon, Boardroom etc. There’s a huge constituency who just see indoor/outdoor as climbing, and indoor as the necessary balanced part of building strength and skills for outside and don’t just use walls when it’s raining. 

I think the article’s focus on indoor only climbers becomes more tangible the farther you get from crags, London, South East etc. It is not so relevant in Manchester, Liverpool, Sheffield, Leeds, Nottm, Newcastle

not sure about the demise of lead walls outside the badlands of the south east either. The lead walls in the cities listed above get absolutely rammed.

remus - on 06 Jul 2018
In reply to Lord_ash2000:

> It's true though, walls are changing, big, steep lead walls are getting rarer, it's all bouldering now and most of the bouldering centres are all about cafe's and chill out areas etc, how much cake can we sell to the mums while the kids do an intro course and what not.

Interestingly there are still plenty of big lead walls being built in Europe. The new Innsbruck wall being a prime example (think it cost 25 million EUR), along with lots of the DAV walls in germany.

planetmarshall on 06 Jul 2018
In reply to remus:

> Interestingly there are still plenty of big lead walls being built in Europe.

I can't speak for most of Europe but certainly lead walls in the Netherlands and Belgium are exceptionally rare - most are top rope only. Not that it seems to stop the local climbers from climbing hard, mind.

MischaHY - on 06 Jul 2018
In reply to remus:

> Interestingly there are still plenty of big lead walls being built in Europe. The new Innsbruck wall being a prime example (think it cost 25 million EUR), along with lots of the DAV walls in germany.

I can confirm the future is very bright for German climbing with the number of excellent new walls being built plus facilities in place. They only thing they can't seem to grasp (with the exception of Cafe Kraft and a few others) is that a massive system board or at least a moonboard is a pretty essential training tool - the lead standard is excellent and it's normal to find more than one 8b< in the gym unless it's really small. 

stp - on 06 Jul 2018
In reply to UKC Articles:

Phew!! Good article but very long for a web based bit of writing. I think stuff of this length would be much better split into 3 or 4 separate pieces released every week or so. Had it been for a magazine it would of been fine. But too long for the internet in my view.

Derek Ryden - on 06 Jul 2018
In reply to stp:

> Phew!! Good article but very long for a web based bit of writing.

I was going to say the same, but I didn't want to be a party pooper (I guess this is a peril of being your own editor - for me, half as long would have been twice as good). Nevertheless, thanks to Natalie for an otherwise excellent, balanced, and timely article.

 

Lord_ash2000 - on 06 Jul 2018
In reply to remus:

> Interestingly there are still plenty of big lead walls being built in Europe.

It could be because sport climbing outdoors in Europe is a much bigger thing than over here where it's almost a niche variation of climbing. Whereas we have plenty of boulders but decently sized crags are a lot rarer as is the weather to actually get on them. 

In response to Paul, I agree to some extent, I was maybe overstating it a bit. Eden rock is actually the wall I mainly use when I do climb indoors and you're right it's far from the worst and it is run by proper climbers. But like I mentioned above, business is business, so we've seen areas like the shop, cafe, seating areas etc expand because that's what many of their customers want. 

Living with the Lake District on my doorstep, it's often a longer drive to the wall than an outdoor venue so indoor wall use in good weather is pretty rare for us, even for evening sessions. On the other hand, If you live 4 hours drive away from the nearest rock yet have loads of big climbing centres on your doorstep then obviously those centres are going to be mainly full of indoor only climbers, and given they are in London then there will be lots of them.

In that environment where there is no tie to the outdoors in its user base, it's easy to see how climbing can become detached from its roots and start to drift into something new. We are already seeing it to some degree with the newer comp style climbing of running and jumping about on volumes etc. 

It is definitely affecting the design of new London walls, having worked on the design of one of the recent new centres and currently working on one in development, I'm finding they are wanting less and less steep angles, partly to cater for lower grade casual climbers and partly for more multi-volume parkour style problems.
 

Andrew Kin - on 06 Jul 2018
In reply to remus:

We visited the innsbruck wall recently.  It is truly amazing facility.

 

Roped climbing just isn't as easy to get into as bouldering. I don't climb and 5yrs ago my daughter didn't climb.  I walked into Eden Rock, paid for a introductory lesson and 30mins later I was able to sign my daughter in as a guest.  Its been like that for 5yrs.

Compare that with the sleepless nights I had with ropes. 

Enter BMC YCS and get told she needs to rope climb.  Decide to have a practice so I buy a rope, harness each and belay device (Doesn't everyone get their first gear from Go Outdoors).  Speak to a friend who climbs and he shows me figure 8 and how to use belay device.  Watch the brilliant BMC videos and go to Penrith wall.  Get asked by receptionist who obviously doesn't climb, if we climb.  Yes is the honest answer.  Go into the wall and set up.  I don't climb so I then have a 6yr old setting off lead climbing on her first ever climb with me belaying for the first ever time with no backup.  She gets to the first clip and clips.  I tell her I want to practice the belay device and ask her to let go.  I think I have it.  She climbs to the second clip and we do the same.  I then let her down from second clip to learn how the device works.  We did that for a few hours until we were both confident.  I had cold sweats that night thinking about if I made a mistake.

We went to the BMC YCS, she qualified for national finals and came 9th in her first year having NEVER had any coaching or shown by anyone other than me how to climb on ropes.  Thankfully the BMC YCS has volunteers who belay.  We didn't even have a coach with us at the finals.  I asked her what she thought and left her to it, I didn't have a clue.

Only after 4yrs did I realise that the amazing Pete Gunn runs classes from the Sands centre in Carlisle and it would have been the perfect place to learn ropes.  Amazing that a highly talented youngster who has climbing in her veins hasn't even heard that there is a roped climbing facility on her doorstep.  The ironic part is we now use the facility when we want to do certain training and the council are planning to get rid.......

I don't think its down to the bouldering centres to take responsibility for getting their clients onto ropes or even outdoors.  But I think more should be done from a joint perspective to highlight whats available to people by walls, BMC AND SCHOOLS.  BMC information should be much more visable at walls & schools.  The youth BMC meets that are going on all summer are a amazing facility at amazing cost.  My daughter can lead climb 7c, has come 5th in Europe comp on ropes but is too young for them.  I asked a year ago and was turned down as it is residential.  TBH i'm not sure she is that bothered as per the article but there may be hundreds of kids who would like it. 

 

Andrew Kin - on 06 Jul 2018
In reply to Lord_ash2000:

In response to Paul, I agree to some extent, I was maybe overstating it a bit. Eden rock is actually the wall I mainly use when I do climb indoors and you're right it's far from the worst and it is run by proper climbers. But like I mentioned above, business is business, so we've seen areas like the shop, cafe, seating areas etc expand because that's what many of their customers want.

 

Cant agree with this.  The reception/café is exactly the same size it has always been.  Even the pizza oven was there from early on, just not plugged in.  The seating area was always there, they have just made it nicer.  The only change was the 'shack' which takes up zero climbing space.

Balance that with the barrel, slabs, training area and the campus section opposite the circuit board which have all gone up in similar times.  We go all over the country climbing indoors.  Eden rock has the best balance possible between climbing and trying to make some money from food

L Blanche DuBois - on 06 Jul 2018
In reply to Andrew Kin:

"Get asked by receptionist who obviously doesn't climb, if we climb.  Yes is the honest answer.  Go into the wall and set up.  I don't climb so......"

Interesting use of the word "honest". 

kipman725 - on 06 Jul 2018
In reply to UKC Articles:

I think there is a lot of demand for more lead climbing in London due to the crowding at the Westway or the Castle but the lack of existing spaces that are suitible prevents more from opening.

Andrew Kin - on 06 Jul 2018
In reply to Blanche DuBois:

That was kinda why I said it.  To highlight how dishonest I was in giving an honest answer.  A climber would have asked me to tie a figure 8 and look at a load of pictures.  TBH I still struggle with them because even though I can spot a poorly tied fig 8 from 20yrd and I check every climb if its through both loops on her harness.  Hand me a rope and ask me to tie a fig8 from my perspective, I struggle.

kathrync - on 06 Jul 2018
In reply to Offwidth:

> I'm surrounded by walls owned by regular outdoor climbers and sensitive to the needs of all the climbers using them, be they mainly outdoor climbers visiting on rainy days or dedicated indoor folk or anything in between, all of whom seem to get on really well. You seem to me tt be making your own silo or maybe being very unlucky in where you live. Yes there are kids parties but that helps keep the entry prices down. The relative increase in bouldering facilities seem to me to have aided in this genuiniely mixed demographic having fun or trying hard to improve together.

Yes, I would agree with this.  My regular bouldering facility of course makes profit from kid's parties and overpriced coffee and I don't begrudge them that.  They have also spent money to build a separate area for kid's parties and beginners to avoid disrupting the regulars, and invested steadily in the workout area (to the point that when my gym membership runs out I will start going there instead for non-climbing workouts as the facilities are better for the bodyweight stuff I want to do) - a facility that is really only used by the serious climbers (whether indoor only or also outdoor).  Personally I think these changes are for the better and if they need to run kid's parties and punter's sessions to deliver them, so be it.

spenser - on 06 Jul 2018
In reply to paul__in_sheffield:

Derby could certainly convince you otherwise on the front of lead walls! The ones in the Unit are incredibly short (not really the focus of the Unit mind you as the bouldering is excellent), Alter Rock is far from an inspiring experience to visit (seriously, what kind of wall doesn't have quickdraws on all of the lead lines?) and the holds on the Derby Uni wall are more likely to move than a jug on a Culm slab (should a punter really expect to be handed a hex key and asked to tighten up the hold they just span by the fourth clip?)!

I'd bloody love to see a purpose built lead wall open up in Derby run and maintained by competent individuals, instead we have an excellent bouldering wall and 2 also rans.

L Blanche DuBois - on 06 Jul 2018
In reply to Andrew Kin:

> That was kinda why I said it.  To highlight how dishonest I was in giving an honest answer. 

I have absolutely no idea what you are trying to convey with this statement.

> A climber would have asked me to tie a figure 8 and look at a load of pictures. 

Why?  Depends on the policy of the wall.  Some walls I'v been to get you to demonstrate a few basic belaying skills, some ask you a few questions about what knot you use to tie in, etc.  Some just get you to sign something that says you know what you doing.  Sounds like your example comes from the latter type of facility.  Not really sure why you would respond to them saying that you are a "climber" when you clearly weren't.

 

trouserburp - on 06 Jul 2018
In reply to Blanche DuBois:

It is a bit discombobulated. Are you trying to say you said 'yes we climb' because you boulder? 

You could have gone back to reception and said you changed your mind!

stp - on 06 Jul 2018
In reply to Andrew Kin:

Love the story of you and your daughter's DIY approach to learning to climb. Great effort and I hope she continues to enjoy and progress her climbing. Climbing is great sport both indoors or outdoors.

MischaHY - on 06 Jul 2018
In reply to Andrew Kin:

> Hand me a rope and ask me to tie a fig8 from my perspective, I struggle.

Any particular reason you've not started climbing yourself? It's not bad...

Might help bridge the disconnect a little. 

In reply to stp:

This article was timed to coincide with the ABC's AGM yesterday and for that reason I decided it would be best to do as one big piece. I definitely think I could have written an article on each of the separate areas, but for an overview of the industry it was the best option.

Out of interest, what do you feel the big difference is between reading long-form in print and online? Just having to scroll? I don't really feel any difference between the two but then I'm glued to a screen all the time anyway. Our narrower columns since the site changes squeeze the text a little more and hence lengthen articles a bit more too. I think long-form is lacking in the UK outdoor media whereas it's very much alive in the US.

Andrew Kin - on 06 Jul 2018
In reply to Blanche DuBois:

Sorry blanche, maybe I am getting ahead of myself. 

I was intending to highlight that simply asking me and my daughter if we climb isn't enough.  The simple answer to that was yes.  My daughter had been climbing/bouldering for best part of a year and i in fact had climbed a few times in that time too.  What I should have said if i was in 100% honesty mode would be no, I have never even been near a rope before as i presume you are asking in relation to ropes.

I hope that's a bit clearer

A climber would have asked me to tie a figure 8 and look at a load of pictures. 

Why?  Depends on the policy of the wall.  Some walls I'v been to get you to demonstrate a few basic belaying skills, some ask you a few questions about what knot you use to tie in, etc.  Some just get you to sign something that says you know what you doing.  Sounds like your example comes from the latter type of facility.  Not really sure why you would respond to them saying that you are a "climber" when you clearly weren't

Just giving you an example of what i get asked at climbing walls elsewhere and what happened at Penrith that time.  As you point out, some ask some get you to demonstrate, some get you to sign a form.  TBH its not always the case.  Can you believe i wasn't even asked if i was a climber or able to belay at ROF69.  We literally paid our money and walked in, no forms to sign.......

slab_happy on 06 Jul 2018
In reply to Andrew Kin:

> Enter BMC YCS and get told she needs to rope climb.  Decide to have a practice so I buy a rope, harness each and belay device (Doesn't everyone get their first gear from Go Outdoors).  Speak to a friend who climbs and he shows me figure 8 and how to use belay device.  Watch the brilliant BMC videos and go to Penrith wall.  Get asked by receptionist who obviously doesn't climb, if we climb.  Yes is the honest answer.  Go into the wall and set up.  I don't climb so I then have a 6yr old setting off lead climbing on her first ever climb with me belaying for the first ever time with no backup.  She gets to the first clip and clips.  I tell her I want to practice the belay device and ask her to let go.  I think I have it.  She climbs to the second clip and we do the same.  I then let her down from second clip to learn how the device works.  We did that for a few hours until we were both confident.  I had cold sweats that night thinking about if I made a mistake.

Did the Penrith wall not have an introductory how-to-belay course?

Maybe I'm misreading or misunderstanding, but it sounds like you're saying you were belaying for the first time ever when you sent your 6-year-old daughter up a lead climb, with no-one supervising you, having misled the receptionist in order to get in.

> I had cold sweats that night thinking about if I made a mistake.

Which is why it's usually a good idea to have a practice with someone supervising you first. Like on an introductory course ...

Obviously it sounds like everything worked out in the end. But unless there's nowhere in the Lake District that offers how-to-belay classes, it sounds like the sleepless nights were self-inflicted.

Andrew Kin - on 06 Jul 2018
In reply to MischaHY:

Time.  I have a son too. 

I don't actually enjoy climbing nearly as much as i enjoy watching it.  When i watch climbing, all i see is possibilities, lines and angles.  I love it.  Spent 6mths trying to get my son to climb with me but in the end we both agreed, it wasn't for us.  I have spent more time on bouldering mats than most climbers

Physical issues

 

Post edited at 15:59
Andrew Kin - on 06 Jul 2018
In reply to slab_happy:

Yep that's pretty much exactly what happened.  I can live with it and although i wouldn't say i am a good belayer, i definitely make sure i listen to those who give advice which is making me better.  I have seen instructors working in Penrith but never seen any info on them.  In fact my daughter has on occasions set up the top ropes for classes that used to occur if we were in the building at the same time.

paul__in_sheffield - on 06 Jul 2018
In reply to spenser:

I never. Inside red the Derby Uni wall. It always looks so smart when I see it, I assumed no-one climbed on it;-)

Offwidth - on 06 Jul 2018
In reply to Natalie Berry - UKC:

I for one like a long read (eg the Guardian articles of that name) and not the sound bite journalism that seems increasing poplar online. Really good article in my view.

eroica64 - on 06 Jul 2018
In reply to UKC Articles:

Excellent well-researched  and informative long-form article that ticked a lot of boxes for me. the primacy of bouldering over lead and top rope walls rang, for me, depressingly true.

IainWhitehouse - on 06 Jul 2018
In reply to UKC Articles:

Thanks Natalie, good article. Interesting that you see "Climbing Gym" as an American term. I'm so used to hearing it in or about central Europe that I saw it as a European term translated into "international" English.

I think US gyms have largely been lagging behind Europe in terms of development until recently, although maybe not in garnering the customer base that you discuss.

spenser - on 07 Jul 2018
In reply to paul__in_sheffield:

Neither of the local clubs use it, it has awkward opening hours and the holds spin on a regular basis, I can't say isit the most enthusing of walls.

The best thing which could happen for climbing in Derby would be for someone to put a decent lead wall in the Ada Bliss building and for that to hoover up all of the custom from Alter Rock.

Si dH - on 07 Jul 2018
In reply to spenser:

I live a 5 minute walk away from Derby Uni and didn't even know it had a wall!

I did see lattice saying they had put up a board in the sports science department - is this the same place? Is it open to the public? 

stp - on 08 Jul 2018
In reply to UKC Articles:

I think the development of indoor walls is really interesting.

Whilst I agree there is definite prejudice against indoor climbing I think most of the old traditionalists ire has been directed at evil sport climbing outdoors. With the myopic focus on bolts they've largely missed this much bigger threat. They might have slowed the development of sport climbing in this country to some degree but meanwhile the indoor scene has been slowly growing and evolving year after year, decade after decade.

For the conservative, yet vociferous, minority who want climbing to remain the same as it was 50 years ago the growth and development of indoor climbing just proves that all the decades of hot air about the superiority of trad climbing was a complete waste of time.

For a country with limited rock and even more limited weather I think there's a certain inevitability about our progression to the great indoors.

The good thing is that with more people climbing indoors we should see a growth in bigger and better walls. Maybe having a facility like the new Austrian wall might be possible in the near future?

paul__in_sheffield - on 08 Jul 2018
In reply to Si dH:

I just dropped one of the Sports Sci academics a line to see if there’s one installed and whether it’s available for punters, will let you know

paul

PS will also try to drop by the Uni wall for a session and report back. Along with the original lines of this thread, it’ll probably be checking out the bouldering as I’m finding it hard to be a***d with the faff of ropes these days ;-) If it’s badly set, I’ll have a chat with someone about getting an external setter in.

Post edited at 08:45
spenser - on 08 Jul 2018
In reply to Si dH:

It's in the fancy new sports centre on the main campus which they built a few years ago:

http://www.teamderby.com/whats-offer/climbing-wall

It is open to the public but it seems that the only way you can find out about when it's open is to be on the mailing list (which I fell off when they implemented their GDPR compliance). Happy to hold your rope on something there, just expect to spin at least one hold per route! I suspect the lattice board is not far away but can't see where they would have put it in the climbing wall's bit if it was there.

1poundSOCKS - on 08 Jul 2018
In reply to UKC Articles:

> Unfortunately for the anti-indoor brigade

Does this anti-indoor brigade actually exist? I rarely meet a climber who doesn't climb indoors occasionally at least. And exclusively climbing outdoors as a personal choice doesn't make you anti-indoors.

tom_in_edinburgh - on 08 Jul 2018
In reply to stp:

> The good thing is that with more people climbing indoors we should see a growth in bigger and better walls. Maybe having a facility like the new Austrian wall might be possible in the near future?

Come to Edinburgh   The combination of EICA Ratho lead/speed walls plus the new Eden Rock bouldering is pretty damn good.

 

barry donovan - on 08 Jul 2018
In reply to UKC Articles:

I had to look up neologism - did anyone else ?  Oxford dictionary - coining or use of new word. 

Like neologism I suppose

Pawthos on 08 Jul 2018
In reply to Natalie Berry - UKC:

Hi Natalie - loving your work!

Just to answer your question, the difference (for me) is on a screen I hold my eyes still and scroll the page, but in hard format I hold the page still and move my eyes. I find I much prefer the latter when dealing with complex or large amounts of info as it’s more interactive/immersive, but perhaps that’s just because I’m a little older.

That said, I didn’t find your article too long - I really enjoyed it.

stp - on 08 Jul 2018
In reply to Natalie Berry - UKC:

> Out of interest, what do you feel the big difference is between reading long-form in print and online? Just having to scroll? I don't really feel any difference between the two but then I'm glued to a screen all the time anyway. Our narrower columns since the site changes squeeze the text a little more and hence lengthen articles a bit more too. I think long-form is lacking in the UK outdoor media whereas it's very much alive in the US.

I don't think it has anything to do with scrolling or formatting. I think on the internet one's attention span is briefer because there's all this other stuff that you can hop around to and get distracted by. You might be getting emails or social media or just want to look something up to find out more. One thought spawns another and on the internet you can just jump from one thing to something else in a second or two.

Reading a magazine is different because there is none of the above, and you'll probably only start reading when there's nothing else to do so there's an uninterrupted space of time to just absorb what your reading.

Also because of the interactive nature of the modern web I feel it's a little more like having a conversation. But one big long monologue makes it less like that and so harder to respond  spontaneously because there are so many points raised at once.

Just my thoughts anyway, and it seems from the dislikes I got not everyone agrees.

 

AlanLittle - on 08 Jul 2018
In reply to IainWhitehouse:

> Interesting that you see "Climbing Gym" as an American term. I'm so used to hearing it in or about central Europe that I saw it as a European term translated into "international" English.

She's right. German is Kletterhalle or Boulderhalle - "climbing hall" or "bouldering hall" and iirc French is the same, salle d'escalade

If they say "climbing gym" in English it's because they're using the standard term from the English dialect they're most exposed to & familiar with, not because they're translating directly from another language.

 

stp - on 08 Jul 2018
In reply to 1poundSOCKS:

> > Unfortunately for the anti-indoor brigade

> Does this anti-indoor brigade actually exist? I rarely meet a climber who doesn't climb indoors occasionally at least.

I'm definitely aware of prejudice against indoor climbers and climbing. A oft heard comment is 'What are you doing indoors on a day like this?' The implication being that outdoor climbing is something superior and it's what we should all aspire to do. At one time such comments had some validity. Indoor walls were pretty crap compared to real rock. But the advancement of modern walls now means they do offer many advantages over the real thing.

Also you get people who climb indoors sometimes but see it only as exercise or training for 'the real thing'. That belief clashes with someone who only ever climbs indoors and can sometimes manifest as  snobbery as in believing they're are a real climber whereas the other person is not.

 

1poundSOCKS - on 09 Jul 2018
In reply to stp:

> A oft heard comment is 'What are you doing indoors on a day like this?'

I wouldn't read too much into it, I've said that myself, and said it about myself when I'm being lazy and end up down the wall. Good to make the most of the weather. Not anti-indoors, just a preference for outdoors.

> Also you get people who climb indoors sometimes but see it only as exercise or training for 'the real thing'. That belief clashes with someone who only ever climbs indoors and can sometimes manifest as  snobbery as in believing they're are a real climber whereas the other person is not.

Of course those people exist, but since those people are climbing indoors you couldn't say they are anti-indoors. Like you say, just snobbery.

paul__in_sheffield - on 09 Jul 2018
In reply to stp:

> I'm definitely aware of prejudice against indoor climbers and climbing. A oft heard comment is 'What are you doing indoors on a day like this?' 

 

The obvious answer is ‘because climbing outdoors makes you weak’ ;-)

paul__in_sheffield - on 10 Jul 2018
In reply to Si dH:

Turns out the Lattice board is situated at UoS’s outdoor pursuits training centre over in Buxton rather than at main campus in Derby.

paul

Offwidth - on 10 Jul 2018
In reply to paul__in_sheffield:

I wonder what would be the University equivalent of a freudian slip?

paul__in_sheffield - on 10 Jul 2018
In reply to Offwidth:

> I wonder what would be the University equivalent of a freudian slip?

I worked there for 16 years so I think it's in my DNA ;-(

stp - on 11 Jul 2018
In reply to paul__in_sheffield:

> The obvious answer is ‘because climbing outdoors makes you weak’ ;-)


Great reply and and also somewhat true. I was only yesterday at failing at Gordale lamenting the fact that my endurance is way off what is was during the winter when I was climbing indoors all the time.

paul__in_sheffield - on 11 Jul 2018
In reply to stp:

> Great reply and and also somewhat true. I was only yesterday at failing at Gordale lamenting the fact that my endurance is way off what is was during the winter when I was climbing indoors all the time.

prior to our last but one Font trip we'd been caning 4x4s and stuff at AW and it went well. Prior to the last trip we made the mistake of being seduced by the nice weather and climbing outdoors almost exclusively and took an absolute spanking in Font. Schoolboy error ;-(

keith-ratcliffe on 11 Jul 2018
In reply to Natalie Berry - UKC:

I find it difficult to read lots of text on screen (put it down to old age!) and decided to copy & paste the article into a Word document then print it to read. Having done that I really enjoyed it and thought it was an excellent summary of the current state of development of climbing walls, so thanks for taking the time to research and compose it. I also agree with you that there is room for more substantial pieces of writing on UKC.

I still dislike the term 'gym' that some of your contributors used.

Post edited at 14:35
Fishmate - on 11 Jul 2018
In reply to paul__in_sheffield:

> we made the mistake of being seduced by the nice weather and climbing outdoors almost exclusively and took an absolute spanking in Font. Schoolboy error ;-(

Agreed. If you don't get your wrists and fingers strong for those little edges and slopey incuts you may as well do volume or go home. 

If you want to experience the very best climbing, you have to be capable and that means concentrated hours indoors. There is no argument to be had there. Only the superstars provide proof of the opposite, not the mortals.

MischaHY - on 12 Jul 2018
In reply to Fishmate:

> Only the superstars provide proof of the opposite, not the mortals.

I guarantee 99% of people who are performing at an elite level on rock are putting in the hours on plastic, or have very structured training on rock.

 

paul__in_sheffield - on 12 Jul 2018
In reply to MischaHY:

> I guarantee 99% of people who are performing at an elite level on rock are putting in the hours on plastic, or have very structured training on rock.

yep, Megos lives in Cafe Kraft

Fishmate - on 12 Jul 2018
In reply to MischaHY:

> I guarantee 99% of people who are performing at an elite level on rock are putting in the hours on plastic, or have very structured training on rock.

I was thinking of the Dave Graham's and Jimmy Webb's who claim to spend little time training. Even Sharma claimed not to until the last few years. But yes, I'm aware 'most' elites cane it when it come to training.

 

Fishmate - on 12 Jul 2018
In reply to UKC Articles:

I thought the article length was fine. Positively, it simply confirms that we have more choice now as climbers and those who want to progress benefit in most cases (logistics being prohibitive for some). It gave good perspective and the forum discussion is interesting. Use it or don't. Wear hobnail boots or Solutions, hemp rope or dynamic, the choice is endless but climbing will evolve regardless!

MischaHY - on 13 Jul 2018
In reply to Fishmate:

The trick is that they don't consider mileage on rock to be 'training'. In the end if you need to get fit for a 9a then doing lap after lap through the 20m opening 8b section (by way of example) would get you fit as a fiddle even though technically you're just 'working the route' or whatever. 

Heartinthe highlands - on 13 Jul 2018
In reply to UKC Articles:

Indoor climbing is the bastard child of a one night affair between Don Whillans and Kim Kardashian. There ain't no views, no loose rock, no flora, no fauna, no stories, no mythology. 

...and the chalk makes you sneeze. 

 

HGavrilov - on 14 Jul 2018
In reply to stp:

While I agree the article is lengthy, I disagree that there should be any difference between print and online. Most people nowadays, especially younger generations, don't read print. Myself included. Apart from BMC's Summit and Mountaineering Scotland's Scottish Mountaineer, I don't read print. UKClimbing articles have become an integral part of my morning routine. The rise of tablets, convertible laptops, and oversized smartphones has somewhat pushed aside traditional print. I've thoroughly enjoyed this article while having my morning cup of coffee. It's not Natalie's first article of such length and I hope it's far from being her last. Few people out there provide as much insight and in depth analysis of the climbing industry as she does.

Andy Gamisou - on 14 Jul 2018
In reply to Heartinthe highlands: 

> ...and the chalk makes you sneeze. 

You're not supposed to stick it up your nose - better white powders exist for this purpose.

 

Offwidth - on 14 Jul 2018
In reply to HGavrilov:

As someone who has fading eyesight I'd say there is a big difference: online it's much easier to change the font size or screen magnification and read it without glasses. Some older folk don't realise this, due to unfamiliarity with the technology, and mistakenly say the opposite. In good bright conditions I'd much rather read print as I can read longer with fewer eyestrain issues  , however if lighting is bad I'll be online if possible. Young people mainly using online systems and viewing a lot really need to think about the damage to their eyesight and other related issues (you should have a short break every 20 minutes and a big break every couple of hours, like with any screen tech).

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Computer_vision_syndrome

"According to the US National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, computer vision syndrome affects about 90% of the people who spend three hours or more a day at a computer.[13] "

HGavrilov - on 14 Jul 2018
In reply to Offwidth:

I don't think I clearly explained what I meant. I agree there are many factors differentiating printed text from on-screen text. From reader's point, there are different aspects which should be considered - light, posture, blinking, distance, etc. What I was trying to convey is that, from an author's perspective, there shouldn't be significant difference in the writing approach between online and print. The points you've outlined are extremely important but they relate to correct reading technique from screen. Someone above mentioned that while reading on screens they tend to focus their eyes on one point and scroll - this is also harmful. An online text should be approached as a printed one - read top to bottom, scroll down so the last line of text is at the top and then again read using the eyes from top to bottom rather than continuous scrolling. Frequent breaks from screens are important and so is correct posture. Recently there are ways one can change the colour settings to reduce harmful blue light on a screen which is also good practice.

Fishmate - on 15 Jul 2018
In reply to MischaHY:

> The trick is that they don't consider mileage on rock to be 'training'. In the end if you need to get fit for a 9a then doing lap after lap through the 20m opening 8b section (by way of example) would get you fit as a fiddle even though technically you're just 'working the route' or whatever. 

Good observation...

 


Please Register as a New User in order to reply to this topic.