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    Getting Started with Rock Climbing

    Now that the snow is clearing and the sun is shining, it’s a great time to go outdoors and enjoy the beautiful Colorado weather. Rock climbing is a popular sport during the warmer months, but it’s imperative to know what you’re doing before tying in outside. Bernardo Beteta is a rock climbing guide at the Boulder Rock Club and Colorado Mountain School. He gives advice on how to start climbing with your family and what to look out for as a beginner. 


    Learn the Technical Aspects

    Beteta suggests parents should learn the technical aspects before climbing with their children. It’s important for parents and children to become familiar with the process and comfortable before going outdoors. There are several climbing gyms where parents and children can learn the basics and become acquainted with the equipment in a safe environment. 

    “Learn the technical aspects in the gym, like hanging on the rope, putting on a harness that goes on top of the clothing you’re wearing, and then being in that vertical terrain and not afraid of being off the ground.” 


    Outdoor Climbing is Much Different

    “If they [parents] are only used to climbing in the gym, they should definitely get some proper instruction to go outside with their kids before they do it,” Beteta says. “If you go outside and something doesn’t go according to plan, you need to know the technical aspects of how to solve that problem.”

    If you’re new to outdoor climbing, consider hiring a guide to help you learn the techniques and what to look for, or bring a friend who has experience with this activity. A lot of vital gear is needed for outdoor climbing to ensure everyone is safe. 

    “It’s not something you can just look up on YouTube, buy the gear at REI, and then go and do it yourself,” Beteta says. “It’s not something you would want to start making mistakes while you’re learning and having other people be involved in those mistakes.” 


    Last Word

    “People that are getting into the sport should definitely not take it lightly. With regard to the safety of climbing, there have been a lot of scenarios where people venture out into climbing areas without having the proper equipment or the proper instruction and knowledge. It ends up being a really bad experience, and potentially, somebody ends up getting injured.”

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