BMC Climbing Wall Managers Seminar 2008 report

Posted by Rob Adie on 21/05/2008
BMC Climbing Wall Managers Seminar

70 climbing wall managers crammed themselves into the sports hall at Leicester Lees Leisure centre – home of the Tower Climbing Centre – to listen to the hot topics of the climbing wall industry presented by several of the industries most experienced climbing wall managers.

Date – 08/05/08

Location – The Tower Climbing Centre – Leicester

The main aim of the day was for climbing wall managers to get together to share their experiences, knowledge and to generally find out what’s going on in the climbing wall world. Throughout the day there were several presentations covering what are considered to be the most important topics affecting the climbing wall industry at the moment.

They included the launch of the new 3rd edition of the BMC Climbing Wall Manual (Iain McKenzie - The Tower & Rob Adie - BMC), which if the number of manuals sold at the seminar is anything to go by went down very well. This bible for anyone involved in the wall industry is updated every 10 years and the new edition is available from the BMC online shop.

Guy Jarvis (Undercover Rock) then gave a presentation on the newly launched National Indoor Climbing Achievement Scheme (NICAS), a scheme aimed predominantly at young people, which I think will be incredibly popular in climbing walls around the country, especially when it used in conjunction with schools and PE syllabus’. For more information click here.

After a buffet lunch taken outdoors in the unseasonably good weather we have been experienced, it was back into the shady sports hall for a presentation on the Climbing Wall Award which was launched at the beginning of the year by Mountain Leader Training. Jon Garside (BMC/MLTE) and Steve Long (Chief Officer MLTUK) gave a low down of what the award was about for those that did not know and for those that did a brief summary of how the award was progressing so far was given. For more information click here.

After a quick refreshment break Tom O’Rourke – the new development officer at the Climbing Wall Manufacturers’ Association had a chat with the managers about route setting courses and the possible ways forward with these. For more information on route setting courses contact Tom.

I then gave a short presentation trying to promote the BMC Accident reporting database to try and encourage the climbing wall managers present to join the database and use it on a regular basis, detailing how useful this resource could be if it was used to its full potential – full details can be found here.

After the final break the remaining climbing wall managers split into two groups to have two separate forum discussions. One covering the ‘role of the technical adviser at a climbing wall’ and the other allowing the less experienced new wall managers/developers to ask the more experienced managers questions about the new walls or prospective developments. One person from each discussion took notes on what was said and these can be downloaded here (TA discussion) and here (new wall/development discussion).



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