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Types of Rock Climbing

5 Different Types of Rock Climbing: Take Your Pick

Rock climbing, though arduous, is a great form of recreation and a way to keep in shape. There are different types that one could choose from too.
ThrillSpire Staff
Last Updated: Sep 26, 2018
You do not need to be athletic to take up the sport of rock climbing. Of course you need some sort of stamina, sense of balance, and strength, to do well at this sport. Nevertheless, depending on your preferences, you could choose from the various types.
Conventional Rock Climbing
To the peak
This is the kind that is usually shown in movies, with pairs of climbers connected with a rope, ensconced in harnesses, scaling up vertical rock faces, carrying specialized equipment in racks.
As they climb up, the climbers fix nuts, wedges, and other types of protective gear into the crevices in the rocks. The rope is tied to these, so that in case a climber should lose his/her footing or grip, the rope prevents the fall.
Sport Rock Climbing
Rock Climbing
This type is similar to conventional rock climbing, the only exception being that the protective gear is fixed to the rock permanently.
Hence, climbers do not have to lug all that gear up and fix it along the way, which makes climbing faster, less expensive, and safer.
Boulder Climbing
Young Woman Climbing
In this, as the name suggests, instead of climbing up crags and cliffs, you climb up boulders, which are usually about ten feet or so in height. Since the climb is not very high, boulder climbing is usually done without ropes.
Ice Climbing
Adult man ice climbing a frozen cascade
In this type, glaciers and frozen waterfalls are scaled. Instead of using nuts, cams, and wedges, specialized equipment that can be screwed into the ice is used.
Free Solo Climbing
Young asian woman hiker climbing rock on mountain peak cliff
This is just like normal rock climbing, except that no protective rope is used. Hence, if the climber should fall, it usually leads to death or grievous injuries.
Indoor Rock Climbing
Woman climbing and bouldering indoor
Indoor structures made of concrete or plywood are erected, into which artificial footholds and handholds are fixed. As it is indoors, the height of the ceiling limits how high the structures can be. There can never any inclement weather conditions to deal with, plus, the footholds and handholds can be unbolted in order to reconfigure the climbing surface.
As you can see, each type differs either in location or equipment required. Choose the one that you feel you would be comfortable doing, before moving on to the more difficult ones later on.