Climbing: history, types of disciplines, peculiarities

Climbing

In the article “Climbing” we will tell you about the sport of rock climbing. You will learn a brief history, sports disciplines and features of this sport.


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Climbing is a very ancient occupation of mankind. Historians, according to found drawings and paintings, tentatively date the first ascents to the year 400 B.C. At that time the mountain climbing was called mountaineering, and rock climbing as a sport appeared much later.

The Englishman W. P. Haskett Smith at the end of the 19th century became interested in studying the local rocks of Wales. The future lawyer went to the mountains for two months for research work and there he met enthusiastic climbers, who gave food for scientific work.

A year later, the first papers came out that described not only gripes, but also various methods of climbing without equipment. Smith received the unofficial title of “the father of rock climbing,” and the discipline earned him the date of his birth, 1886.

Climbing wall "Energy of Heights"
Climbing wall “Energy of Heights”

In the 1940s, the first world records were set in the USSR. International competitors competed in the Western Caucasus, in Abkhazia, in the Crimea. Well-known Russian climbers, such as V. Staritsky, V. Markelov, A. Gubanov, V. Balezin, N. Korablina, N. Novikova, and many others have glorified our country for ages.

Later, rock climbing enters the world arena and begins to develop actively. Rules and disciplines are being formed, and it is decided to hold international tournaments only on artificial rock-climbing walls.

The first World Cup of Rock Climbing was held in Germany in 1991. After that it began to be held regularly every two years. Today, in addition to the planetary forum, the largest start is the World Cup, which includes 4-6 stages.

Climbing - Speed
Climbing – Speed

Rock climbing made its debut at the Olympics very recently, at the 2020 Games in Tokyo. The competition was held in two disciplines: men’s and women’s all-around. The all-around is a competition in three separate disciplines: speed, difficulty and bouldering.

Speed is held on a 15-meter vertical course with a slope angle of 5 degrees. It is a competition for time with an opponent who moves on a parallel track. This ascent to the height of a five-story building athletes pass in a matter of seconds. The world record for women – 6.99 seconds, men – 5.48 seconds.

After the speed the climbers go on to a series of bouldering courses. Each one is about 4 meters high with a starting position, an intermediate zone and a top at the top, which must be fixed.

Climbing - Bouldering
Climbing – Bouldering

Bouldering is an extremely difficult discipline requiring strength, flexibility, coordination and the ability to make quick decisions when faced with difficult challenges. The strongest is determined by the number of tops, and in case of equality by the number of zones.

If even in this case there is a tie, then the number of attempts spent on tops and zones is counted. For example, if an athlete has 2 tops and 3 zones, his result is recorded as follows: 2T 3Z.

The last discipline is Difficulty. It takes place on a track length of 15 meters. Climbers start at the foot and climb as high as possible by snapping the rope into the special rope pullers on the track, trying to reach the last hitch, which is located at the top of the climbing wall.

Climbing - Difficulty
Climbing – Difficulty

Before the performance, climbers are given 6 minutes to study the route. When passing the route athletes are ranked according to the height of the achieved hook, the one who climbed higher wins. Athletes do not see each other’s performances.

After the performance in 3 disciplines, the places of athletes, which he took in each event, multiplied to get the final number of points. The winner is the one with the lowest final score.

Olympic climbing

The right technique will help you achieve great results. Here are some useful tips:

  • It is necessary to keep your arms straight whenever possible;
  • Press against the wall as much as possible;
  • Look up/forward to find the best grips;
  • When you find a good place to rest, take advantage of it;
  • Take your time.

In addition, successful climbing is not always limited to climbing technique; an athlete will be required to develop a strategy for difficult trails so that fewer attempts are made.

Insurance in climbing
Insurance in climbing

First, when climbing, you have to consider the footwork. The correct position of the legs is sometimes crucial to successful climbing. When putting your foot down, try not to move/move it too much at the point of rest. It is also helpful to keep your feet underneath you whenever possible to have good balance.

Second, it is important to keep your hip as close to the wall as possible, as this will help prevent a fall. Finally, the third point to pay attention to is to push or pull in the opposite direction from the movement, so as not to push off the wall.

Climbing is a physically very challenging sport, and sometimes extremely dangerous. To ensure safety there is special equipment, let’s list some. Let’s start with the clothing, it must be comfortable and not cramped in the movements.

The helmet must be able to withstand falling rocks, so it is made on foam or on the basis of the “shell”. Climbing shoes – special shoes on a thin sole, so you can feel the relief with your feet. You will need a climbing harness, rope and straps (two carabiners connected to each other).

Climbing shoes
Climbing shoes

The rope can be climbed with a block clamp and a gri-gris (a device for descending and braking at high speed). In addition, a climber cannot do without special gloves, magnesia and safety devices.

To become one of the world’s best climbers requires years of hard training and dedication. You can enroll in the rock climbing section at the age of 10. Before that, the legal framework of the Russian Federation and the world community does not allow it. The age is related to the formation of the child’s skeleton.

Rock climbing under the guidance of an experienced coach turns into an absolutely safe sport that develops mental abilities and movement coordination well. The child will become strong, agile, enduring and brave. We are not even talking about the real romance that every climber will experience at the top of the mountain.

About climbing

FAQs

Rock Climbing is an Olympic sport in which athletes compete in climbing artificial terrain (vertical wall) in three separate disciplines: speed, difficulty and bouldering. Among the population is popular as a form of outdoor activities, is used for the physical development of children in school.

The main difference between a climber and a mountaineer is the end goal. A rock climber climbs on rocks (artificial or natural) for short distances, while a mountain climber is engaged in climbing to the tops of mountains. In the sport, climbers compete in "greenhouse" conditions on climbing walls, while climbers conquer inaccessible peaks and are severely tested by the weather.

The highest climbing tower in Russia is "Vyshka". It is located in Magnitogorsk on the bank of the Ural River, is a 37 meters high transmission line support. In the world, the highest rock climbing wall is an arch-type dam on Lake Luzzone (Switzerland). The track is a wall with changing relief height of 165 meters.

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