GB Climbing teams: overview

Posted by Zoe Spriggins on 11/04/2019

The GB Climbing Team is getting stronger and stronger, with lots of talented climbers coming up through the ranks.

The GB Climbing Team is made up of the Senior Team, the Junior Team, the Ice Climbing Team, the Ski Mountaineering team and Paraclimbing team.

GB Team selection

The GB Climbing Teams are selected annually and the selection is based on a number of factors primarily centered around competition results from both national and international events. A full version of the GB Climbing selection criteria can be viewed here

Molly Thompson-Smith competing at the IFSC Chamonix World Cup 2019. Photo: Eddie Fowke

GB Paraclimbing Team

The GB Paraclimbing Team had a fantastic international season in 2019. More information on this achievement can be found here.

Triple GB podium at the Briançon IFSC Paraclimbing World Cup 2019 with Anita Aggarwal, Hannah Baldwin and Leonora Volpe. Photo: Sytse van Slooten

GB Ice Climbing Team

Competitive ice climbing comes under the banner of the UIAA (International Climbing and Mountaineering Federation). 

GB Ice Climbing Team Member competiting in Italy 2018. Photo: Patrick Schwienbacher

Sport Climbing World Cups and World Championships

The International Federation of Sport Climbing (IFSC) runs international competitions in the disciplines of lead, speed and bouldering. All three climbing disciplines will feature in a combined event in the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo.

The IFSC World Cup series takes place annually and the IFSC World Championships take place every two years.

View the IFSC competition calendar

Many IFSC events are streamed live. These can be accessed from the homepage of the IFSC website.

Olympic dreams

In 2013, the BMC supported the IFSC’s bid for Sport Climbing to be part of the 2020 Olympics.  Sport Climbing was on a shortlist of eight sports being considered for possible inclusion in the 2020 Olympics.This bid was sucessful and Sport Climbing will make its debut at the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo. Only the top 20 male and top 20 female athletes will qualify to attend the games.

The road to the 2020 Olympics has three qualification routes:

1) World Climbing Championships in August 2019 in Hachioji,Tokyo. The top 7 climbers will qualify for the Olympic Games.

2) Special Olympic Qualifying event in Toulouse in November. This is an invitation only event and the top 6 athletes will qualify for the Olympic Games.

3) Continential Championships in Moscow in 2020 - only the athlete who finishes in first place will qualify for the Olympic Games.

Billy Ridal compeiting at the IFSC Munich World Cup 2019. Photo: Eddie Fowke 

Meanwhile the UIAA (International Climbing and Mountaineering Federation) is preparing to launch a bid for the 2022 Winter Olympics once the IOC criteria for adding new winter sports is finalised. This follows it's inclusion in the cultural programme at the Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia 2014.

Supporting the GB Climbing Team

The BMC provides administrative support and financial help to the team, but team members have to raise money toward the cost of competing internationally for the GB Team. If you are interested in opportunities to sponsor the team or our national climbing competitions please contact zoe@thebmc.co.uk

Find out more:


As the climbing walls, crags and mountains start to open, we wanted to say thanks to every BMC member who supported us through the Coronavirus crisis.

From weekly Facebook Lives and GB Climbing home training videos, to our access team working to re-open the crags and fight for your mountain access, we couldn’t have made it without you.

If you liked what we did, then tell your friends about us: www.thebmc.co.uk/join


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Anonymous User
09/08/2014
Well done to the GB Ice Climbing Team , great future ahead for that team too :)

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