UAL Climbing was founded in 2012 as a way for climbers within UAL to meet and climb together. Our aim is to help introduce climbing to people who haven't tried it before, and provide a space for enthusiasts to team up and share in the community that revolves around climbing, a love of the outdoors, and just overall having a good time.
Our aim this term is to focus on the community surrounding climbing. We plan to meet virtually a lot of the time to discuss our favourite climbers, the best climbing spots, and to explore how we might get to know each other and enjoy climbing together during this new era of social distancing. Climbing is a social sport even though it’s not team-oriented, and this is and always will be at the heart of the club - we’ll keep it informal, relaxed, and open to anyone who wants to meet new people and likes the idea of climbing!
COVID-19 UPDATE: Currently we are not officially meeting as a club. We are keeping an eye on government guidelines, news outlets, climbing organisations, and listening to the SU. We are of course, really eager to get the club back up and running as soon as we can and have a fun and fulfilling first session, when it is completely safe to do so. Some of us have made the personal decision to use the climbing walls in our own time now that they are open. We’ll keep everyone updated on what the club plans to do this year and how we’ll be staying in touch, via our Facebook page and Instagram. Feel free to email any of the committee with questions or just to say hi. Stay safe!
Why should I climb?
Climbing is a great way to stay fit as it’s a really good workout, and targets a lot of core muscles. It’s also really brilliant for mental wellbeing and can be a good way to find focus or de-stress. Working out your way to the top is a bit like a physical puzzle! It’s also a great way to socialise and meet new people - you spend a lot of time off the wall as well as on it!
If you’re a bit of a beginner or totally new to climbing there are experienced members who can help you out and coach you, and if you’re more experienced you’ll meet people to climb hard with!
What type of climbing do we do/where do we meet?
We are predominantly a bouldering club (low-level climbing without ropes), and we previously met at least once a week, at Stronghold Climbing Centre in Tottenham Hale. We currently do not meet officially, but we are looking at changing where we regularly meet when we are able to again, to somewhere more central to make it easier to access for as many people as possible.
When does UAL Climbing meet?
Under normal circumstances, Fridays, around 6:30pm - 8:30pm climbing, followed by post-climb socialising at the pub! We are looking into the possibility of a second evening/different location for another day of the week, however this is TBC.
Currently we don’t officially meet on a Friday.
Where can I get in touch/organise meet ups/stay up to date?
Meetings are confirmed via our Facebook group. Other information will also be organised and posted on Facebook/Instagram (@ual_climbing). Important updates may also be sent via email. If you have any questions at all or want to chat, please feel free to get in touch with Hannah!
What is the UAL Climbing membership and how much does it cost?
The membership price, paid to the SU, is currently £10 this term. If you are planning to climb with us regularly, after an initial give-it-a-go session, we really encourage you to purchase either the annual or termly membership. Our little pot of funds allows us to subsidise trip costs, pay for insurance, purchase new kit and fund socials. And being a member also means you can come with us on any and all of our trips!
We understand that as students, it can be a bit difficult to pay for things like sports clubs, but we really encourage everyone to try climbing with us - if you have any concerns, please get in touch with Hannah!
How much does climbing cost?
The membership does not cover entry fees to the wall. To use the climbing facilities requires an entry fee, as we climb at locations that are not owned or associated with UAL or Arts SU and we do not have a wall of our own! This can vary depending on the climbing wall and whether you purchase pay-per-entry or a membership. A student discount is usually offered on the entry fees. Information about the Stronghold entry fees and memberships can be found here.
Do I need my own climbing gear? What should I wear to climb?
No, you don’t necessarily need your own gear. The walls offer climbing shoes for hire and also chalk, and most of the club members are happy to offer some of their own chalk to you here and there!
If you’re wanting to climbing quite regularly or climb outside the indoor wall, it can be a good idea to invest in your own pair of shoes. There’s lots of different climbing kit available for lots of different types of climbing - if you want to take the first step to owning your own kit, purchasing some kind of chalk is a great idea. You can find it in most sports shops or at the climbing wall.
In terms of clothing, it’s best to wear fairly loose fitting/stretchy clothes that you’ll be comfortable in - climbing involves a bit of stretching and reaching so wear something that keeps you mobile! (Also be prepared to get a bit chalky!)
Do you do any socials?
Yes! After our weekly evening of climbing we usually venture out to the climber’s true favourite place - the pub. We would also usually have a Christmas dinner/social and a summer social. Until we can properly meet again, feel free to get in touch with Hannah or Josie if you have any ideas for socials or events for next year (Covid-19 allowing!).
We are now going to be running occasional virtual meets instead, to be posted on our social channels. We’d encourage you to join us so we can get to know one another and have some laughs - our first virtual event - a welcome evening of games and casual chats will be 15th October 7-9pm. Sign up here: https://forms.gle/Jw1cxXkBWFWSpPo9A Indo to be sent via email.
Do you do any other types of climbing?
We predominantly do bouldering as we have found this is the most accessible form of the sport for novices and experts alike! However, a lot of club members do meet informally to do variations of roped climbing at other walls/outdoors too. There are some great training facilities at a lot of the climbing walls and more experienced climbers often dedicate some time to training as well.
Do you climb outdoors or do trips?
Yes! As students in London we are sadly without easy access to proper rock and mountains, however, to break up the monotony of plastic holds we organise trips for our members to get out into nature and in touch with some real rock! In the past few years, club members have been to Newquay, Tunbridge Wells, the Peak District, Dorset, Tenerife, and Fontainebleau (France), for outdoor climbing. We have club crash pads which we’ll usually take with us. If you’re thinking about coming on a trip, we would recommend having your own shoes and possibly chalk too.
With the Coronavirus pandemic, club trip, particularly abroad, have had to be cancelled or postponed. We will look into alternative arrangements as soon as it’s safe to do so!
Do you do competitions?
Climbing has become a growing a sport in recent years, and with that, competing has also become more popular. In the past we have had some members competing in University-oriented competitions - it’s generally something decided year on year, based on members’ interest. We approach it quite casually as a club - at the moment we don’t have an official team or anything, but if you are someone who would be interested in competitions, we would love to hear from you, and we’re always open to new ideas!
Do you have any UAL Climbing Club merch?
We’re working on it! We’re taking the opportunity of a bit of extra time on our hands to do some club rebranding. Hopefully we’ll be able to have some t-shirts and possibly more ready for next year!
Are you on social media?
Yes! We have a new Facebook page, UAL Climbing 2020-2021, and a new Instagram @ual_climbing. If you have Facebook or Instagram we’d encourage you to join our group/follow us to stay up to date. You can also get in touch via email.
See you at the (virtual) wall!
- The UAL Climbing Club Committee
Facebook: UAL Climbing 2020-2021
President: Hannah Billett - firstname.lastname@example.org
Treasurer: Noah Smith - email@example.com
Social Secretary: Josie Bachman - firstname.lastname@example.org
Feel free to get in touch with us!