UKC

Routesetter

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Routesetter
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Routesetter

Indoor climbing is one of the fastest growing sports in the world and at its heart is the routesetter; a person whose job is to arrange holds onto the wall to create challenges for climbers.

Whilst it appears a simple job, the routesetter is part architect, part designer and part choreographer who has to draw upon creativity and ingenuity to create appealing, engaging and sometimes devious problems that test both the physical and mental faculties of the climber.

At the UK’s oldest dedicated climbing wall in the heart of London's East End is Alexander Lemel, who is at the vanguard of a new wave of routesetters committed to pushing this exciting growing profession forward.

Now, as the sport prepares to make its debut on the Olympic stage, where audiences will bear witness to an audacious display of gravity defying movement, Routesetter tells the story of those who have helped shape the sport.

This short film by Band of Birds, commissioned by Olympic wall builder Entre-Prises provides a glimpse of Alexander's life and the commitment required to be the best at this demanding job.


26 Jul, 2020

Just noticed no replies so wanted to say really enjoyed this and what a great chap he seems

26 Jul, 2020

Thanks for putting this up. In the south east / London, Lemel is like a mythical creature.

A more in depth interview would be very interesting, especially being a setter..

27 Jul, 2020

I can confirm that the boulder setting at Mile End is excellent, so great to see Alexander and the team being featured this way. In particular they do a great job of creating interesting problems in the lower range - V1-3 blocs that are engaging and interesting and fun. So many places, blocs of that range are just ladders with smaller and smaller holds and/or the odd “rung” moved or awkwardly placed. At Mile End you could climb an entire session of V1-3 and not get bored. This is something Alexander alluded to in the vides but something he and the team deserve a lot of credit for, because it reflects a great commitment to making climbing fun for everybody, not just those cranking V6 and up.

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