If you are one of those people who have already taken a liking to bouldering or rock climbing and see it as their passion, the topic of difficulty levels is another important step. So what is the average grade for climbers? Do the difficulty levels differ strongly from each other. Depending on the type of climbing we do, we can come across different types of scales. The most popular scales in bouldering are the British and French scales.
So what is the average grade for climbers? The most popular scales are the British and French, usually ranging from V1 to V6. That is, from the easiest routes, which don’t require much strength, to those that only the best do.
What are the scales and difficulty levels of the routes?
We already know that the most popular scales are the British and French scales, and what the average grade for climbers is. The latter is often either the only valid scale in a given area or is a second scale that allows us to calculate and compare the difficulty of routes. Here, they are marked with Arabic letters from 1 even to 9. It can be e.g. 5c, 6a, 6a+, 6b…. To 9c, which was climbed a few years ago by the Czech climber Adam Ondra.
However, there are many more climbing scales and, depending on the type of climbing, there may be American, Australian, Alpine, Russian or even a combination of various scales. No matter which scale we stick to in our climbing struggles, their degrees of difficulty will become clearer and easier as we acquire new skills. If you are a beginner and lack motivation at the beginning, this article is for you.
What are the difficulty levels of the most popular scale?
On artificial climbing walls, the so-called boulders, at each point, there are several routes with different levels of difficulty, which are marked with specific colors. While climbing, we don’t grab everything we can, we just pay attention to the colors of the given routes.
The routes are often diagonal, sometimes traverse, and sometimes lead to the ceiling, but they don’t have to be very long, often their difficulty simply depends on the need to perfect certain moves, which allow you to gain further points.
Here are the difficulties we have to deal with on particular levels in bouldering on the British scale:
V1 – A route for beginners, usually with easy holds. Doesn’t require very high climbing skills.
V2 – Slightly more difficult route, there may be some places that are more difficult for beginners. Grips and routes are more varied.
V3 – Difficult route, for more advanced climbers. There are places with jumps and much more difficult holds, which beginners cannot cope with.
V4 – A more difficult route than the previous level, also due to the type of holds. There are often narrow holds and jumps or even holds with just the legs.
V5 – Very difficult route, only for people with very good climbing skills. Requiring good condition and an iron grip, a lot of jumps and hangings.
V6 – Extremely difficult route, only for advanced climbers. A lot of narrow and flat holds, with a lot of jumps and overhead holds.
To reach the highest level in bouldering or other types of climbing, you need many years of training and regularity in this sport. The ratio of muscles to body mass plays an important role here; in climbing, less mass means less strain on the arms, but strength training should be remembered first and foremost.
Bouldering and its benefits
So we know that there are quite a few route designations according to countries or continents. And also what is the average grade for climbers, with more or less skill on each route difficulty. Climbing itself has many positive effects on our body and mind.
Bouldering or any other type of climbing is a comprehensive, holistic workout that engages almost every muscle in the body.
However, it is not just a typical gym, to make progress on the routes you also need to be stretched and learn to think spatially. Repeated attempts on the boulder train your determination to achieve the goal, our first attempts are probably not very impressive, but the most important thing is not to give up and keep trying. As in any sport, regularity, determination, and perfecting your skills are important.
Climbing fitness and strength
Professional climbing, whether on the rocks or in the bouldering arena, we always associate mainly with very muscular athletes and high agility. In this sport, it doesn’t matter what country you’re from or whether you’re a man or a woman. If this sport is our passion, and we are determined and put a lot of effort into improving our skills, we can be successful. And here are some exercises to help improve our skills in climbing:
- Strength training, mainly, increases our endurance. Best done with a load of dumbbells or training with your own body weight
- Pulling up on a bar, it is important to train certain muscles and to learn a particular movement that can help us to climb
- Increasing hand and finger strength, and a firm grip in climbing are essential, and the higher the grade of the route the more challenging it becomes. Nowadays, there are many devices and gadgets that allow you to effectively train your hands and fingers
- Conditioning, as climbing is not just about lifting your own weight, good conditioning is very useful here. It will allow you to climb much longer routes, and some are just for fitness
- Stretching can also be yoga or similar. These exercises increase the flexibility of our body and slenderize our muscles. Many high-level routes require us to be very flexible or even stretch a lot
Remember, if you are a beginner, start with the easier routes, even though you think they might be too easy. A good rule of thumb in climbing is that it’s better to do more easy routes than one difficult route.
We need to get our bodies used to the specifics of the sport, and this takes time. Only practice and regularity in this sport show what Is the average Grade For Climbers, and the medium level is already pretty good when it comes to the difficulty levels.
In Summary – What Is The Average Grade For Climbers?
Climbing is an unusual sport, but anyone can try their hand at it. Several things are important in this discipline, but first good condition, considerable strength, and flexibility of the body. Climbing, regardless of the type of sport we do, has many positive effects on our bodies and even on our minds. Determination, perseverance, and improving your skills are not all we can expect in this sport.
We also know that there are many types of scales, and some of the more popular ones are the French and British scales. So the question of what the average grade for climbers is influenced by many aspects, such as their strength or degree of skill.