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Climbing Wall Curriculum Guide

A guide full of curriculum ideas on how to utilize the wall. The guide is included in our Installed School Climbing Wall Package. Additional copies: $25

The Benefits of Climbing

Rock climbing and traverse wall climbing activities promote:

Individual skills

Visual acuity, lateral movement, spatial perception, coordination, muscular strength, emotional control, commitment (calculated risks), footwork, taking responsibility for safety, problem solving, observation, analysis and method, self-confidence, concentration and creativity.

Team skills

Keeping an eye on one’s teammate, acting as advisor, providing motivation, offering encouragement and having confidence in the other person.

Collective skills

Cooperating with another person and ensuring their safety.

Tips for teachers

After climbing, if possible, review the climbing experience.

  • Encourage students to say thank-you to the classmates who supported him or her on the wall.
  • Recognize students who have shown outstanding effort
  • Recognize students who were supportive of other climbers
  • Show appreciation to students who felt discouraged but persevered
  • Allow students to talk about their ideas, concepts and feelings

Climbing Dictionary

Barn door n. When the body swings away from the rock from two or more pivot points (usually one hand and one foot) due to the angle. Can occur on a steep lieback as well. Difficult to recover from and often results in a fall.

Beta n. information about a route.

Bucket n. big handhold that is easy to hold onto. Usually a depression, hole or scoop (concave) in the rock. See also jug.

Crimp vb. to grip in a way such that fingertips contact the hold with knuckles raised slightly.

Crimper n. a small edged hold that is conducive to crimping.

Crux n. the most crucial, difficult part of the climb.

Cruxy v. A climb is said to be cruxy if it has several hard sections interspersed with rather easy sections.

Dead Hang adj. Hanging from a hold with the arms straightened allowing body weight to be held by the skeleton rather than arm muscles. - good for relaxing the arm muscles

Deadpoint n. to catch a hold at the apex of upward momentum at the point where the climber will experience the least force. (see "dyno"). 2. (vb.) to perform a deadpoint

Disco Leg adj. Also known as 'sewing machine leg' or 'doing the wild Elvis'. Referrers the uncontrollable shaking of the leg(s) while climbing. Result of tired leg muscles.

Downclimb vb. to climb downward rather than upward on a climb.

Drop knee n. a technique requiring the downward turning of the knee to increase reach efficiency.

Dyno n. abbreviation for "dynamic movement", a move that requires some use of momentum. (antonym: static movement) 2. (vb.) to perform a dyno.

Edge n. a small, horizontal hold. 2. (vb.) to stand on an edge with the corner of a shoe maximizing the pressure applied to a small area of rubber.

Flag vb. to dangle a leg in a way that improves balance.

Flash n. completion of a climb first try with no falls. 2. (vb.) to perform a flash.

Gaston n. a climbing technique that involves sidepulling with an elbow pointed outward.

Greasy adj. slippery

Hand Traverse n. Climbing horizontally using hands only. Also: Campus Traverse

Heel hook n./vb. a climbing technique involving the use of a heel to pull down like a third arm.

Hike v. To send a climb in excellent style. Usage: "I was falling all over that climb then I took a rest and hiked it."

Hold n. Any feature of the rock which affords the climber a place to grip with hands or feet. Also, for indoor use small plastic molded climbing grips.

Jug n. a large easy to hold feature. A big hand hold, usually a great relief to find. (See also, bucket.)

Lay back n/vb. a move requiring pulling with arms to the side and pushing with the feet in the opposite direction. (syn. lieback)

Mantel n./vb. a climbing technique involving the transfer of upward force from a pulling action to a pushing action much like a child would climb the kitchen counter to reach the cabinets above.

Match v. To place either hands or feet on the same hold.

Onsight n/vb. a clean ascent with no falls, first try, with no prior knowledge of the route.

Open hand n.vb. a technique that requires a maximum amount of skin contact from the hand. Often used on slopers. (antonym: crimper)

Pumped adj. tired. referring to the state of forearms in a desperate state, swollen and unresponsive.

Sandbag n/adj/vb a climb that receives a rating inappropriately low rating for the difficulty.

Send vb to complete a route successfully.

Sloper n. a downward sloping hold.

Smear n/vb the act of placing a large surface area of shoe rubber on a hold to create maximum friction.

Stem n/vb movement requiring opposing outward pressure much like a child climbing a door jam.

Undercling n/vb a hold that requires fingers to face upward rather than downward.