9.22.17 Rock Climbers

Rock climbing is available for UREC members on Friday, Sept. 22, 2017.

LSU’s UREC is hosting a climbing league, with registration from Jan. 13-29.

The league can be used as a tool for University climbers to not only get better at their craft but also to compete with other climbers on campus.

Students who haven’t climbed much before shouldn’t feel intimidated by joining the climbing league. The league is as much about learning how to climb as it is about winning competitions. There are different levels to climb on, and intramural sports has always been a great way to get involved.

The competitions at LSU are usually measured by how far a climber can climb on a specific route. There are checkpoints and reaching each checkpoint awards the climber a certain amount of points. Additionally, completing a route all the way on the first try rewards extra points.

Engineering sophomore Luke Runyon climbed for the league last semester and said technique and strategies are as much involved in climbing as strength.

“There are a lot of strategies that help,” Runyon said.

One of the strategies Runyon uses is the heel hook, which is when you stick your heel on top of something to push up and create force instead of using the ball of your foot. Another technique is leaning the way that a hold leans.

As with anything, Runyon said, the most important way to prepare is to practice. Putting in hours on the wall, doing pull ups, and hanging from ledges are all ways to make sure to keep up strength and confidence with climbing.

Students interested in joining the climbing league but in need of more practice can sharpen their skills at the free “Learn to Climb” class hosted by the UREC on Jan. 23 from 4-6 p.m. This beginner level class will “expand your knowledge of climbing indoors,” according to the UREC’s website. Students will learn basic climbing movements and techniques, types of hand and footholds and climbing etiquette.

Students can register for the league online at the UREC website or in person in the UREC adventure section. Actual competition begins Feb. 3.

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