Rock climbing: Road To Tokyo

Millions of people watch the Olympics every 4 years, people love to watch swimming, track, and field, gymnastics, etc. New sports being added to the Olympics doesn't happen often so when rock climbing got accepted to be a sport in the 2020 Tokyo Olympics the climbing community was excited about it. Rock climbing can be a convoluted sport due to its many different rules and how it's laid out is strange, but I'm hoping to clear somethings up for people. 

I grew up in a family where rock climbing was something, we started doing very young. I stopped when I was around 10, but my brother continued into his late teens and even went across to Georgia to compete in a countrywide competition to see who the best climber in the country was. So, rock climbing to get this big is huge for the sport and the people who have been doing it all their lives. 

For the climbing community, this is a huge step in the right direction. Whenever a sport gets added to the Olympics that means more people will see it and more interest will be shown in the sport making it grow. Climbing as been working on getting into the Olympics for the last 6 years, the heads of the climbing institution have had to figure out the best way to put it out onto the global stage.  They thought the best way was to group the 3 disciplines of climbing together making everyone compete in all 3. The 3 types of climbing are lead, speed, and bouldering. Lead climbing is when you have a rope attached to you and as you're climbing up you have to clip into a carabiner that is connected to the wall every few feet, you have to make it to the top of the 49 ft tall route in the 6-minute window you're given. Speed climbing is when you are going against someone and are trying to climb up a 49 ft tall wall as fast as you can. Bouldering is when your climbing not connected to a rope, but you have mats under you for when you fall, the walls are usually about 15 ft tall.

woman on rock climbing wall Photo by bady qb on Unsplash

Just like every, sport climbing has a grading system. It’s weird but it’s not too hard to follow. So, say that someone got first in lead, fourth in speed, and second in bouldering, then that person would get 8 points and its like golf where you want the least amount of points possible. So, if someone ended up getting tenth in every category, they would have 30 points, which is high.

 Rock climbing isn’t a very big or popular sport but now that it’s in the Olympics I hope it gets the recognition it deserves, and that people give it a try. Now that you know the basics of it, look out for it this summer during the Olympics.