Lower-off simulators: coming to a climbing wall near you

Posted by Will Harris on 13/08/2014
Lower-off simulator at the Foundry Climbing Centre. Credit: Jenny Clinging

Want to practice how to safely lower off a sport route? Try out one of our Sport England funded lower-off simulators at a wall near you.

Lowering off a sport route on real rock is very different to clipping the carabiner at the top of an indoor climbing wall. The leader will often have to thread the rope through a closed metal loop and re-tie in, whilst ensuring that they are always safe.

To allow this skill to be practiced in safety, the BMC has supplied practice lower-offs to a number of climbing wall's throughout the country. Each practice station features the two types of lower-off that you are most likely to find at a British sport climbing crag; two bolts linked by chains to a ring, and two rings each on independent bolts.

Each practice lower-off station is acompanied by a plaque, complete with a QR code which redirects smart phones to a BMC TV video showing how to safely lower off sport routes.  

WATCH: Lowering off a sport route on BMC TV

Practice belay stations are being installed at the following walls:

  • The Foundry, Sheffield
  • Awesome Walls, Sheffield
  • Nottingham Climbing Centre
  • Harrogate Climbing Centre
  • The Leeds Wall Climbing Centre
  • Newcastle Climbing Centre
  • Sunderland Climbing Centre
  • Rock Antics- Newton Aycliffe
  • Redpoint Climbing Centre- Birmingham
  • Kilnworx Climbing Centre- Stoke-on-Trent
  • Manchester Climbing Centre
  • The Reach Climbing centre  -London
  • Westway Climbing Centre - London
  • Whitespider - Kingston 
  • Calshot Activities Centre - Southampton 
  • Mile End Wall - London 

Further stations will be installed at walls across the Lakes, North West, Midlands, South West and London & SE.

WATCH: BMC Vice President Mina Leslie-Wujastyk climb Mecca at Raven Tor on BMC TV

WATCH: Mina Leslie-Wujastyk talks about climbing outside on BMC TV

WATCH: BMC Ambassador Steve McClure on Hubble at Raven Tor on BMC TV

Many thanks to Jenny Clinging at the Foundry Climbing Centre for providing the images used in this article.



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Anonymous User
14/08/2014
We have had these at Swindon Climbing Wall since 1998, and these have been used to many 1000s of times by the coaching team and public...
Anonymous User
10/09/2014
Lowering off two almost horizontal anchors is a fantastic way of creating the most amazing kinks in a rope!

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