Rock climbing is easy, blogging is hard…

Welcome to “Rock Climbing Life!”

This is officially my first post! If you want to know about me, check out the “About” page. I wanted to create a space where people who are curious about rock climbing, or want to hone their rock climbing skills, can come learn from someone who’s in the game. As a certified gym instructor, I have developed the skills necessary to keep you alive on the ropes, and of course, have fun doing it! Here are some Tech Tips which I have learned over the years in order for you to stay safe while rock climbing. Enjoy!

  1. The Figure 8 Knot – There are hundreds of knots that the modern day rock climber has to learn, but this is the most important. This is the knot that connects your end of the rope to your partner. Start with about 4 feet of rope, make a twist in it, and loop the rope around the twist. Then, poke the end of the rope through the loop. You should be able to see the shape of an “8” in the rope. This is how you connect yourself to the rope. Simply thread it to your harness, and complete the knot the same way as before, to make a “double rope” figure 8. If you have any extra rope, just tuck it into the knot.
  2. Climbing Shoes – Like most people, when I first started rock climbing, I used a comfortable pair of sneakers. This can only take you so far. Eventually, you will need a special pair of shoes called, “Climbing Shoes”, in order to get better at climbing. These shoes are specially made by companies that add a thick layer of black rubber to the bottom of the shoe. This allows for your foot to “stick” to the rock better. This will help you a lot as you progress because you wont have to press as hard on footholds.
  3. Chalk – Think of the chalk crayons you used in school, only crushed up to a fine powder. This is chalk powder, which you keep in a “chalk bag” so that you can dip your hands in the chalk as you climb. Rock climbing is not like climbing a ladder. Especially in the gym, holds can be very slippery, and the chalk helps keep your hands from slipping off, which can cause you to fall! Outdoors, I have found that the holds are not as slippery, and I rarely use chalk – but perfect your skills indoors before you attempt this technique.
  4. To Belay – This is the name of the process in which you control the rope when another person is climbing. I won’t go into the specifics of how to belay, because this should be done by a qualified instructor (like yours truly) at a certified climbing gym, but here’s a tip to help you get better once you have learned. Set up a “faux belay” station in your home. This is where you set up a pulley on a doorway, over your bed, or in your garage, and thread the rope in it as if you were belaying. Practice feeding out the rope, and taking in the rope, so that once you get out there and have to belay in the real world, your technique will be perfect!

belay

That’s it for now! Get out there and have fun!

And remember, walking is knot the same as climbing!

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18 thoughts on “Rock climbing is easy, blogging is hard…

  1. That picture, the one with the GriGri and the belayers hand NOT on the bottom strand of rope? Yeah, that’s wrong. That’s how people get dropped, injured, and possibly even die.

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    • I think the belayer just got stung by a bee. Dropping the rope is OK in circumstances like that, but they should be wearing leather belay gloves. Those allow you to drop the rope whenever and at least you won’t get rope burn if you try to catch it when your climber falls.

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      • I got stung by a bee once. I had to get the tweezers out of my top pocket of my pack. I thought the magnifying glass was going to burn my fingers off as I tried to do it outside while belaying too. I think bees like belayers. Probably because it sounds the same. I think that’s where that word comes from. It’s German for beekeepers…. beelairmeister… I think. Anyway, my partner was soooo upset I got stung. He was climbing his project that he still hadn’t gotten. My hands were off the ATC for like 2 minutes max. He’s such a know-it-all. You know: “You can’t do that… blah blah blah.” It was like a total medical emergency. I was fine though.

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      • Wow, only two minutes? Last time I got stung I had to go back to the car to get some antihistamines to stop the swelling. You were lucky. I was only gone from the belay for like 12 minutes, but my ex-partner was sort of pissed. Oh well, he was a pussy.

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  2. YOU ARE A DANGER TO ANYONE WHO READS THIS CRAP! You have no idea what you are talking about, no matter how good your intentions are. I watched a few of your videos and they are equally uninformed.

    If you want to blog, blog about your experience, your journey, your travels, your struggles, but PLEASE do not give any more instruction!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. For starters the pic of the belayer with the GriGri could not be more wrong… It is actually on Petzl’s pics of what NOT to do.

    I could go on with lots of items, but you should not be instructing. Please keep climbing as safe as possible.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I don’t think the figure 8 is the most important knot in climbing. I think the most important knot is to KNOT listen to this guy spew trash out of his mouth that can actually be responsible for someone’s life.

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  5. It’s up to the people reading this blog to do their full research, since they are the ones risking their own lives. It doesn’t do any good to point figures at different methods of instruction online. Let’s be responsible for our own well being:)

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