Rock Climbing Walls for Those Who Want to Enjoy the Sport

By: Muna wa Wanjiru

A rock climbing wall is used by climbers who want to enjoy this sport without going far. This is done on a wall that is constructed and as grips for foot and hands to hold.

Materials used for constructing these walls include bricks, wood and multiplex boards that are thick and have holes, which are drilled into it. Drilling holes makes it convenient for climbers to pass ropes through them for securing.

Steel and aluminum walls that were manufactured recently have also been used as rock climbing walls. Sometimes these walls have provisions wherein the belay ropes can be attached. Apart from ensuring safety, this rope is also used for practicing Bouldering or climbing.

The idea of the rock climbing wall began in the United Kingdom. Don Robinson, a lecturer in Physical Education and founder of DR Climbing Walls, built the first wall in 1964 at Leeds University by inserting pieces of rock into a corridor wall.

However the first commercial wall was built in Sheffield, traditionally England's center for climbing due to its proximity to the Peak District.

Gym climbing is becoming a more and more popular urban sport and it provides people the opportunity to try out authentic rock climbing.

Some of the grips are more suited for outdoor rock climbing. These are oversized and are bolted on with other grips too.

The simplest type of rock climbing wall is made of plywood, known informally among the climbing community as a woody, that has a combination of either screws on hold or bolts on holds.

Iron bolts, which are inserted through the holds, help in fixing the bolt-on holds to the wall. This has specific bolt point. Screw threaded holes in the wall, which are pre allocated are then used to fix these. The holds are connected to the wall by two or more screws, which can be screwed directly into the surface of the wall.

Other types of rock climbing walls available include the granite walls, concrete walls made by spraying concrete on a mesh of wire, fiberglass walls, etc.

Each hole has a particularly formed t-nut to allow modular handholds to be screwed in to the wall.

The outer surface is enclosed with a texturized product that includes polyurethane laden, paint and concrete with sand.

In addition handholds and other textured surfaces, the wall may also contain surface structures such as protrusions and indentations, or take the form of an overhang, under hang or a crack.

Grips come in different colors. Those of the same color are often used to depict a particular route, so that routes of varying difficulty levels can be overlaid on each other.

Another way the climbers mark the routes is by placing a tape that is colored under the holds. The climber is allowed to use only the grips of the designated color as handholds but is usually allowed to use footholds and man holds of the designated color and surface structures and textures of the rock face as footholds.

The grade of the route is usually a consensus decision between the builder of the route and the first few people who are allowed to climb the route.

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