Rock climbing walls are popular right now, and if you are building one at home, you may wonder about the best climbing holds for kids. Most climbers use synthetic holds made of epoxy, fiberglass, and sand. The combination provides the texture and friction necessary for a good climbing grip.
Climbing holds made from real rock or wood, less popular than synthetic holds, provide another option for indoor climbing walls. Although you may plan to construct a wall for your children to climb, holds can be attached directly to the studs of a garage or basement wall.
The holds are the most expensive part of a climbing wall construction project, according to “Indoor Climbing.” However, your wall can be as simple or elaborate as you need it to be. Use an existing wall for a cheap and easy way to go. Include some of these popular indoor rock climbing holds:
- Bucket. A bucket hold is the easiest type of climbing hold for kids. It allows your child to wrap his or her fingers over the edge and down inside the hold.
- Crimp. A crimp hold is a narrow climbing hold just large enough for three or four fingers. It is more challenging than a bucket hold and requires good finger and tendon strength.
- Edge. An edge hold is somewhat larger than a crimp hold. It has a defined edge that is usually large enough for four fingers.
- Sloper. A sloper hold has a downward sloping side. Sloper holds range in size from a few inches to foot in length. These smooth, round holds are the most difficult to grab onto.
- Ring. A ring hold, also appropriately called a handle, is shaped like a suitcase handle. Your child can easily grip this hold with his or her entire hand.
- Jib. A jib hold is a small climbing hold that is excellent for foot placement during a climb. Jibs usually have a texture that allows for a good hand hold, too.
- Jug. A jug hold is a large climbing hold that your child can grip with his or her entire hand. Sometimes a jug is a hole in the wall, also excellent for easy gripping.
- Knob. A knob hold protrudes from the rock climbing wall like a doorknob. This is a good hold for hand grips or foot placement.
- Pocket. A pocket hold is a climbing hold with a hole in it. The hole is usually large enough for one or two fingers to grip.
- Undercling. According to “Indoor Climbing,“ an undercling is held from the bottom with an upward pull. Your child can achieve this hold with pressure from the legs or the other arm.
Climbing holds for kids are relatively easy to find online. A simple Internet search results in several listings for companies that specialize in climbing gear—including every available type of hold—to keep your family in training without busting your budget.