Getting started
The four courses in the Rock Skills scheme are designed to provide progressive learning opportunities for new and developing climbers.

Courses are delivered by approved providers who will develop your rock climbing skills by introducing you to traditional protection, rope systems for constructing belays and moving well on rock. You will have plenty of opportunities to practise all of these skills as well as increase your environmental knowledge and risk management strategies, alongside other developing climbers.

Find a course

Do you have additional needs?

Do you have a physical or mental impairment or disability which may require a provider to make reasonable adjustments so that you can take part in a training or assessment course? Find out more.

Rock Skills participant handbook

Rock Skills Participant Handbook

Connect with your Mountain Training account after your course

Your course provider will create a record of your training course on our Candidate Management System (CMS) - if you would like to view this record and start using our digital logbook, you will need to connect with your Mountain Training account.

Minimum age: 12.

Course length: 2 days.

Climbing experience required:
Completion of a Rock Skills Introduction course
Have climbed 10 routes on walls or outdoor crags; and
Have belayed on 10 occasions.
Course content
Background and Planning. Choosing a suitable venue, how to use guidebooks and mobile devices to find crags and routes, crag etiquette and the work of the mountaineering councils.

Climbing Skills. Warming up and injury avoidance, developing your movement skills and widening your repertoire of climbing moves.

Footwear and Equipment. Rock boot fit, selecting the right equipment for improved performance and an introduction to climbing protection.

Technical Skills. Building anchors, selecting runners, ropework, belaying, holding falls, lowering, seconding a route and personal abseiling.

Environmental Knowledge. The impact of climbers at the crag, ethics, access and environmental considerations.

Hazards and Emergency Procedures. Identifying hazards, managing risk when climbing, abseiling and bouldering, understanding common injuries, how to get help and the role of Mountain Rescue.
Find a course

By the end of the course you can expect to:

  • Have covered the course content in a safe and enjoyable outdoor environment and classroom-style setting;
  • Have climbed outside for a good proportion of each day on an appropriate crag; and
  • Be in a strong position to second a lead climber on natural rock and participate safely in a climbing session.
Rock Skills Intermediate courses are typically 2 days, although some providers may deliver the course over 3-5 days.

There are approved tutors across the UK and Ireland. A variety of cost packages are available depending on what's included; food, accommodation etc. so you can choose one that's right for you.

Find a course

What next?

Progression from this course could involve gaining further climbing experience with friends or through a climbing club.

Learn to Lead Sport Climbs or Learn to Lead Trad Climbs courses are the next steps in the Rock Skills pathway.

You are about to be redirected to the Candidate Management System (CMS)

Create an account to register for one of our schemes.

Log in to your existing account Learn more about CMS