Bouldering – How Do You Get Down Safely?

Many beginners have a lot of questions about safety and the most basic things in general, which advanced climbers don’t even think about, and often when you are on a special beginners course that is meant to prepare you for bouldering or climbing, you won’t hear much about it. If you don’t want to ask someone “How do you get down safely?” because that can be awkward then here we are to tell you everything that you need to know about it.

When it comes to indoor bouldering then the average high of a climbing wall is about 15 feet, and also on the floor should always be the mattress to reduce the impact of your falling body. The most important thing when it comes to jumping down from the top is that your legs should be bent in your knees to also take some of that falling impact. If that’s not enough for you to feel safe then stay with us we will give you more tips.

Bouldering - How do you get down safely?
Bouldering – How do you get down safely?

Safe body position while jumping down

While jumping down we should make a special body position with our body to let our muscles take the most of the impact rather than our bones. As we said above your knees need to be bent to reduce the impact of connecting your falling body with the ground.

Those are the basics of physics, but we need to remember them because the theory only won’t make your fall safe. When your feet will connect with the mattress then it will reduce your falling impact but you need to help it with your body. Think of it as a car with a speed of 3 mp/h driving into the wall, even with that slow pace it can leave a big scratch or even bend your hood.

To be safe as possible we can do many things that will help us get down safely:

  • Get down on the wall as low as you can – If you have reached your route’s top then it doesn’t matter if you use any other holds to get down, so if you can see holds that will help you get lower then use them. That will lower the impact of falling, and also will be less scary to jump from the top. Don’t be afraid to use other holds even if they are not straight below you, sometimes it’s good to go right or left to reach that easier route and get down safely with that.
  • Center of your body mass matters – When you reach the top you often are in a weird body position, but if you have got good handholds then you can lower your legs which will also move your center of body mass lower, which should reduce slightly the impact of falling.
  • Help yourself with arms – Often when you jump from the top your legs could use some extra support, then you can try to reduce some of that impact with your arms, but only when you’re legs are not enough, then bend your arms in elbows and with an open hand place them on a mattress while you are doing squat due to the impact
  • Look for handholds created to go down – If your bouldering gym is beginner-friendly, you can look for a special type of handhold to make it easy for you. It was placed there to let you get down easier. They tend to have a downward arrow designed on them.
  • Take a look at more advanced climbers – If positioning your body during the fall is hard then check the other climbers who are more advanced than you are, and see how they are doing this. I bet there are many experienced climbers at your local gym, and it’s not difficult to see when they are jumping from the top.
get down safely
get down safely

That impact is created by your body mass so if you are heavier then the force generated on the mattress will be higher, and more difficult to reduce. Make sure to check out our new article “How much weight should I lose to be a better climber?“.

In summary – How do you get down safely?

There are plenty of ways to get down safely and the most common is to use other handholds to lower your center of body mass as low as you can and then jump to the ground. We hope that you will remember that advice when you will reach that top and the last thing to do will be to get down safely.

Don’t be afraid to ask someone experienced if you still struggle with it and don’t know how to get down from the top. The bouldering community is great, and there are a lot of people that will help you at the beginning of your bouldering journey.