How Do Professional Climbers Earn A Living? – 2022 Methods

  • Post category:Climbing
  • Reading time:7 mins read

There are a lot of famous climbers on the world stage but how exactly are they earning money? We all know that top climbers are not working 9 to 5 jobs, because otherwise, they would not have enough time for their climbing passion. We will explain to you how professional climbers earn a living, and how did they manage to start it off. Also, we will give you tips for 2022 because now you have more opportunities to monetize your passion and finally leave your regular job.

Professional climbers have many sources of income which is good because diversification lets them sleep well and deep. Most often professional climbers do earn money from sponsorships, but there are also many other possible sources for example social media income, or even selling their own products, and many more, but we will talk about it later in this article. Also if you want to know how much they make and how it is likely for you to reach those numbers then keep reading!

How much do professional climbers earn?

It is often the most interesting question for those who think about being a professional climber, and you have to know that a climbing career won’t make you a millionaire, but you can expect to earn way more than 200 000$ per year.

Most of your income will be from various types of sponsorships, for example on competitions and also on your social media profiles like Instagram and TikTok. That is why it is very important to grow your social media profiles because that will be a big percentage of your total income.

But unfortunately, that amount of money is reserved only for the biggest celebrities like Lynn Hill, or Adam Ondra, so we would recommend you aim a bit lower to get higher chances of reaching your goals. You need to set reasonable goals for yourself.

How it is likely for me to get climbing sponsorship?

Every climber at some point thinks about being a professional in the future, some are instantly rejecting that idea and some think that if they try really hard they can reach that goal, but how probable is that?

How do professional climbers earn a living?
How do professional climbers earn a living?

Unfortunately, we don’t have good news for you, because to reach more than 100 000$ per year you will need to have a true talent for climbing, and on top of that spend a lot of hours every single day at your climbing gym honing your skills.

Only the best of the best are able to reach that goal, so if you are not doing 5.14’s on a regular basis then you still have a lot to learn. Your chances of being among those celebrities are even less than 0.001 percent. Sometimes even hard work won’t make you that good, because at this level things like “body physique” and “talent” are playing a big role.

But maybe there are other ways to earn money other than getting climbing sponsorship. Let’s talk about it different ways to make money as a climber.

How do climbers earn a living?

Except for sponsorships, there are other ways that you can monetize your climbing passion. A lot of climbers earn money by:

  • Tutoring other climbers
  • Finding a job as a route setter
  • Creating own social media and earning money from ads
  • Creating tutorial videos on YouTube
  • Selling own products like chalk bags and clothing
  • Selling photos from their climbing trips

Those are the most common ways to earn money as a climber, that won’t require you to have a private manager. Those methods will let you spend more time climbing and also earn some money.

How I can start earning money as a climber?

If you think that you are good enough to earn some money for your climbing passion then we will give you some tricks that will work in 2022. Note that current top climbers were using other methods because they started their careers many years before you and those things were different back then.

Today it will be wise to think about the internet as the main way to monetize your climbing career. At the start we would highly recommend you:

  • Record your regular climbing attempts
  • Record climbing tutorials
  • Do viral stuff at climbing gyms

All of those videos you should upload to your social media profiles. We suggest you focus on YouTube, Instagram, and TikTok if you want the best results. Note that it will take time for you to start earning from your creativity, so don’t give up too soon. You will also need to learn things like operating a video camera, and how to talk to your audience, but you will improve over time.

We recently did post a great article about being a climbing influencer on social media so if you are interested then make sure to check it out “Can I Become A Climbing Influencer? – (Easy And Quick Steps)“. In this article, you will find a lot of tips and easy-to-follow guides to start your online career.

In summary – How do professional climbers earn a living?

Unfortunately being a professional climber takes a lot of effort and time, so you need to think twice before choosing this path as your source of income. It is definitely not a get-rich-quick scheme, and even if you manage to reach other professional climbers you won’t become a millionaire overnight unless climbing will get a lot more popular than it is in 2022.

That is why it is important to spread our climbing passion to other people, and even to young kids who will also get addicted to climbing like we are, which will definitely let any climbers earn more money from it and most importantly get new people to a climbing world. We do have an article where we talk about it more so check it out if you would like to invite a new generation to our beautiful sport “What Is A Good Age For A Kid To Start Climbing?“.