Over the last 12 months a dedicated group of sixth form students have established a rock climbing and bouldering club. Indoor climbing is one of the fastest growing sports in the UK and the North West is particularly well served with accessible venues.
The group meet twice a week with a Tuesday evening bouldering session at Boulder UK, Blackburn and a climbing and bouldering session at Awesome Walls, Stockport on Friday. There have been additional forays to other venues – Rock Over Climbing in Manchester, Birchen Edge in Derbyshire, and The Climbing Hangar in Liverpool.
It has been really enjoyable to see the impressive development and technical improvement during the course of the last year. Bouldering routes are graded in ascending order from V0 to V8 and beyond – many members are now able to complete routes at an impressive V5 and V6
Roped climbing begins with top roped routes for safety and to teach technique. Many members have progressed from top roped climbing to lead climbing and completed a five week ‘learning to lead’ course at the Manchester Climbing Centre. Similarly impressive results have been achieved with members leading routes of up to 7a in difficulty. Roped grades begin at 4a, and rise in 3 ascending leveles through 5a,b,c, 6a,b,c, 7a,b,c etc.
The members who completed the ‘learning to lead’ course are now in a position to be assessed for the NICAS (National Indoor Climbing Achievement Scheme) level 4&5 award
It is certainly the case that some students have got the climbing bug! They have independently taken part in national competitions in Manchester and Sheffield.
The climbing and bouldering group is open to any sixth form students. It offers a series of benefits and challenges: – problem solving, strength, flexibility, body awareness and physical development – all in a safe, supportive and fun environment.
Anyone interested in joining the group should contact Mr Morris