Climbing, the Olympics, and the BMC: Q&A

Posted by Peter Burnside on 03/08/2016
Shauna Coxsey crushing at the Chamonix IFSC Lead World Cup. Photo: IFSC / Eddie Fowke

What will climbing look like in the Olympic Games and how will British athletes be funded? We answer some common questions.

What will the format be in the Olympics?
The format will be speed, lead and bouldering – perfectly embodying the Olympic motto, ‘Faster, Higher, Stronger’. Only 20 male and 20 female athletes from around the world will compete. And there will be a combined single medal for each gender.

Which British climbers will be contenders?
The athletes that will go to the games will be talent-assessed by UK Sport and invited to join the World Class Programme (WCP). It will be difficult to predict who will be on the WCP at this stage, but it will likely be made of the current crop of strong junior athletes and some of the younger senior athletes.

What does it mean for the BMC – will there be new funding or new staff?
We should be eligible to apply for funding from UK Sport and the application will be assessed based on our current crop of talented athletes. We may be able to get funding for the WCP athletes, and the staff and resources required to run the Olympic program. But, this is not guaranteed.

What was the BMC's role in making climbing an Olympic sport?
The International Federation of Sport Climbing (IFSC) is the force behind the bid to get climbing into the Olympics.

The BMC decided to support the IFSC after Area Reps at National Council, following discussions at Area Meetings, voted to support the IFSC in their bid to get climbing in the Olympic games. 

Following the decision, the ball was in the court of the IFSC to lobby for competition climbing to be upgraded to Olympic status, with the earliest potential year of inclusion being the games of 2020.

WATCH: Climb 2020: The Olympic opportunity on BMC TV

What is the history of competition climbing?

The first indoor competition took place near Lyon, France, in 1986. The indoor competition climbing circuit was then officially recognised by the International Mountaineering and Climbing Federation (UIAA) in the late ‘80s.

It was in 1989 that the UIAA first sanctioned a World Cup series and it was in Leeds that the first event was organised by the BMC and won by our own Jerry Moffat. The overall title, however, was claimed by another Brit, Simon Nadin, who narrowly beat Jerry over the course of the whole World Cup series to effectively become the first British Climbing World Champion.

With the rise in popularity of the new climbing discipline, bouldering, a test competition was organised for 1998 and dubbed ‘The Top Rock Challenge’. Its success led to the creation of the first Bouldering World Cup in 1999.

In 2006, the International Federation of Sport Climbing was founded and accepted as a new member by the General Association of International Sports Federations.

The sport continued to grow and, today, more than 75 countries participate in climbing competitions held all over the world, with the World Championships and Youth Championships being the most popular events.

For many years, the BMC has hosted a number of international and national climbing competitions, such as the popular Youth Climbing Series, the British Bouldering Championships and British Lead Climbing Championships. So the decision to support the Olympic bid seemed to be a natural progression for competition climbing.


GB Climbing is supported by the BMC, Mountaineering Scotland and Secur-it.

The GB Paraclimbing Team is supported by Oakwood Climbing Centre and Quay Climbing Centre. The GB Ice Climbing Team is supported by Montane. Many UK walls also support the GB Climbing through free or subsidised entry.

🧗‍♀️ FOLLOW: GB_Climbing's Instagram for exclusive photos and results

🐦SCROLL: live GB Climbing Twitter updates with GB_Climbing

👍 LIKE: GB Climbing Facebook for more news and pics

📺 WATCH our YouTube GB Climbing playlist

👀 VISIT: the GB Climbing site

HIGHLIGHTS: 2019 La Sportiva British Bouldering Championships


« Back

Post a comment Print this article

This article has been read 2290 times

TAGS

Click on the tags to explore more

RELATED ARTICLES

Bronze for Molly Thompson-Smith in European Lead Championships 2020
0
Bronze for Molly Thompson-Smith in European Lead Championships 2020

Molly Thompson-Smith climbed her way to a bronze medal in the Lead final of the IFSC European Continental Championships, currently taking place in Moscow, Russia.
Read more »

How to watch Molly Thompson-Smith and Will Bosi in Moscow
0
How to watch Molly Thompson-Smith and Will Bosi in Moscow

Will Bosi and Molly Thompson-Smith are in Moscow, Russia, competing in the IFSC Europe Continental Championships.
Read more »

Molly Thompson-Smith and Will Bosi take on the final chance for Olympic Qualification
0
Molly Thompson-Smith and Will Bosi take on the final chance for Olympic Qualification

Will Bosi and Molly Thompson-Smith will soon be heading out to Moscow, Russia to compete in the IFSC Europe Continental Championships.
Read more »

Post a Comment

Posting as Anonymous Community Standards
3000 characters remaining
Submit
Your comment has been posted below, click here to view it
Comments are currently on | Turn off comments
0

There are currently no comments, why not add your own?

RELATED ARTICLES

Bronze for Molly Thompson-Smith in European Lead Championships 2020
0

Molly Thompson-Smith climbed her way to a bronze medal in the Lead final of the IFSC European Continental Championships, currently taking place in Moscow, Russia.
Read more »

How to watch Molly Thompson-Smith and Will Bosi in Moscow
0

Will Bosi and Molly Thompson-Smith are in Moscow, Russia, competing in the IFSC Europe Continental Championships.
Read more »

Molly Thompson-Smith and Will Bosi take on the final chance for Olympic Qualification
0

Will Bosi and Molly Thompson-Smith will soon be heading out to Moscow, Russia to compete in the IFSC Europe Continental Championships.
Read more »

BMC MEMBERSHIP
Join 82,000 BMC members and support British climbing, walking and mountaineering. Membership only £16.97.
Read more »
BMC SHOP
Great range of guidebooks, DVDs, books, calendars and maps.
All with discounts for members.
Read more »
TRAVEL INSURANCE
Get covered with BMC Insurance. Our five policies take you from the beach to Everest.
Read more »