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Indoor vs Outdoor Climbing

In today’s article we are going to look at some of the pros and cons between indoor climbing and outdoor climbing.

There are many differences, but I’m just going to concentrate on three. Everyone has their own preference, and if you are trying to decide which one is for you, perhaps this article will help.

Indoor Rock Climbing vs. Outdoor Climbing Vlog

Convenience vs. Atmosphere

The first difference that I would like to share is about convenience versus atmosphere.

Most climbing locations are outside, and you will have to travel to get there. Indoor climbing is undeniably easier to get to, but the atmosphere of the outdoors is (arguably) better.

So indoor climbing wins on convenience, but climbing on an outdoor climbing wall wins on atmosphere. 

Safety vs. Excitement

The second difference I’d want to highlight is the difference between safety and excitement.

Indoor climbing is unquestionably safer than outdoor climbing since climbing gyms maintain safety measures. There is mandatory training when an individual uses a rope while performing the activity, and the gym guarantees that all safety equipment, such as bouldering mats and insurance, is available.

Not that you can’t get injured on an indoor climbing wall, but it is less likely and if it is serious, at least emergency help is relatively close by.

Outdoor climbing inherently comes with a higher risk of injury because you’ll be dealing with a variety of weather conditions and other factors which may be rather unpleasant and tough. But those same conditions also provide a different kind of thrill since you get to experience how the action feels in different situations while feeling closer to nature.

Technique vs. Problem Solving

I was hesitant to choose this one because both these things can appear whether climbing indoors or outdoors.

Because of the more steady atmosphere, indoor climbing is an ideal area to develop specific techniques. You can also do this when outdoor rock climbing, but often climbing gyms have routes and other things specifically set up to practice different things.

When outdoor climbing, it is more often about “conquering” the climb. You don’t really want to risk falling as much so practicing skills you are not good at is less likely. Instead, you will work with what you have and figure out ways around the limitations. 

Teach yourself emergency roping and bouldering skills,
because this knowledge will save your life!

Indoor vs Outdoor Climbing 1


In the Survival Fitness Plan we focus solely on bouldering, because when you are climbing to get away from an enemy or cross terrain in a survival situation it is unlikely you will have all the gear.

The good thing is that bouldering can be done indoors or outdoors and is relatively safe either way.

If you want to know more about this, check out the ‘Emergency Roping and Bouldering’ training manual . 

This training manual has two sections. The first one goes over the fundamental techniques of bouldering (we love the fundamentals at the Survival Fitness Plan) and the other half shows all the different ways you can use rope in survival situations, such as creating improvised harnesses and crossing rivers in a safer way.

You can get it at: www.survivalfitnessplan.com/emergency-roping-bouldering

Safe training!

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