Why I Started Bouldering

What Made Me Start Bouldering & What Exactly Is it?

What is Bouldering?

Bouldering is a form of rock climbing without the use of harnesses or ropes. You can boulder on real or artificial rock walls. I like to climb on artificial rock walls with the use of climbing shoes.

Why did I start?

I started bouldering for a few reasons. First of all, when I started, my neck still wasn’t fully healed (you can read about my neck injury here). Secondly, as I wasn’t training jiu jitsu due to my neck injury, I needed another form of sport to progress in. My friend, Dan asked me if I wanted to go climbing with him. I sprung at the chance because I could finally train a sport which wouldn’t really affect my neck. I also knew that bouldering affected your forearm and finger strength tremendously. Therefore if I was ever to return to Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, this would give me an advantage as the Gi grips in BJJ really heavily on forearm and finger strength.

Is Bouldering Fun?

Yes. Bouldering is very fun. Once you complete a hard climb you feel a sense of achievement. If you can’t complete a climb for a while, you can go back to it. As long as you keep progressing that’s all the matters. After a few months you’ll be able to see yourself progressing more and more. There are “grading” systems in most places usually done by colour schemes for each climb. This represents how hard the climb is.

Bouldering is actually HARDER for those with more muscle mass and more body fat as there’s more weight to carry. This is why most women and leaner men are good at bouldering.

Am I Good at Bouldering?

I’m OK. I’m not really a climber, I’m more of an athlete who climbs… if that makes sense. I look around and see people using actual technique which I try to use myself. But I find that I just use my athletic ability mixed with a small amount of technique to make a climb. My friend Dan seems to be the same, however he has better technique than me.

I set myself goals before every session such as “complete this many climbs of that colour”. I would recommend bouldering to most people who aren’t scared of small heights. It’s great for anyone seeking progression.