Setting Up A Climbing Wall

By: Kris Koonar

Many Health Experts believe that a rock-climbing wall is an answer to the regular gym problems a layman faces. The sport by itself offers a whole-body workout and strengthens an athlete's back and hands. It is the only overall exercise kit that is portable enough to remain in a single room or in the backyard of your house. Thus, the best possible option is to manually construct a rock-climbing wall at home.

The process may require your carpentry skills and good amount of resources, but most of them easily found at home. The resources include a free continuous wall, holds and reasonable floor space. The holds can be easily arranged as the wall is being built, thus creating your own unique climbing route.

The wall must have developed angular faces and forty-five to sixty degree elevation between the verticals and overhangs. This is where guidance from an engineer or a veteran rock climber is essential. An engineer could offer more precision in construction by designing a variety of blueprints regarding the angles, the placement of the holds, sizes and location.

A home rock climbing wall, also known as 'Woodie' is specifically created on wooden frames. But if you do have a termite problem, an iron casting is recommended. Wood is more appropriate because it is organically disposable, safe and agrees with the human skin (you wouldn't want scratches and wounds to mess with your climbing experience).

A general design of a Woodie would require separate construction of its individual wall faces, which is later combined to form a compact framework. The framework is then attached or rested on a free wall in the house, leaving no gaps in between to ensure safety. If the surface is free-standing, the framework should be three dimensional to be structurally sound. The faces can be enveloped with plywood or hard plastic sheets. By spending a little more, you can include smaller panels with thick resin and a stone coating offering the same feel as natural rock.

As the wall nears its completion, you will be left with a tougher task of arranging the holds. In such cases, using an expert guidebook would do well. A guidebook would offer instructions on the placement of each hold and selection of bolts. Every hold has its own unique style built to protect the climber from a freefall. When tightening bolts, it is advisable to use a T-handle hex wrench. The specialty of this wrench is that its makes it easier to fix the bolt head inside the hold. If you are looking at building a good route, restrict the total number of holds and space them well.

A rock climbing wall becomes more challenging as its height increases, which is why selecting an isolated area with a towering ceiling should serve your purpose. Just in case, you would like to construct in your backyard, it is better to use a children's tree house or a dead tree stump. The most important detail that shouldn't be ignored when constructing a climbing wall is that the wall should be sufficiently agile to handle dynamic movements and shift of load on its surface.

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