Rock climbing is an activity that many people find exciting. But when they are just getting started, there are certain things they need to know. Preparing to climb rocks starts with practicing in a safe environment.

Many experts agree that the best way to start is to practice using an indoor climbing wall. Many public gyms are offering this option to their members. Climbers can learn gradually, using handholds and footholds. Most gyms that offer walls have different routes marked off using a different color for each one. These routes range from easy to difficult, allowing new climbers to learn at their own pace. The primary skills taught are bouldering, as well as top-roping, and also lead climbing.

In the case of bouldering, one must climb the wall without using a harness or a rope. Instead, it involves crash mats, which are pads thick enough to protect a climber if he or she falls. At this point in the process, they are learning to climb up 20 feet high. It is always recommended that one have a spotter watching them practice in case something goes wrong.

Those who don’t engage in bouldering may try top-roping instead. In this case, the person who is learning climbs a rope that is securely anchored above them. This is the option most gyms make available because it is safer than bouldering. Though just like in bouldering, there are specific routes to follow when top-roping, each of which is increasingly difficult.

Lead climbing is when thick bolts are anchored into the wall, and climbers hold onto them on the way up. Once a person has reached the top of the wall this way, the rope tied around them releases them safely on the floor.

Once a person has mastered climbing a wall inside, they are ready to climb outside. This still involves bouldering or top-roping. Those who engage in bouldering outside will still have crash pads available to them, as many of them are portable. They fold to half their size and can be carried like a backpack. When it comes to the top-roping outside, this is the most often used method when climbing up rocks that aren’t high quality.