Getting started
To get started on the Climbing Wall Development Instructor qualification you need to meet the following prerequisites: If you can meet all of the above requirements, here's what to do next: Register now

Climbing Wall Development Instructor candidate handbook

Climbing Wall Development Instructor handbook
Latest version 1.1 uploaded 12/12/2018

Not quite right?

If this doesn't sound like the right qualification for you, consider the following: You could also read through our 'Which scheme is right for me?' page.
Training
Climbing Wall Development Instructor training typically lasts for one day (minimum 8 hours contact time).

Before you attend a Climbing Wall Development Instructor training course, make sure you have done the following:
  • You must be registered on the scheme.
You must have an up to date logbook (preferably DLOG) with evidence of the following:
  • 50 led routes.
  • Climbed at 3 different major climbing walls.
  • Belayed a lead climber 50 times.
  • 25 lead routes at grade F6a on indoor climbing walls.
  • 20 supervising sessions after passing either Climbing Wall Instructor or Rock Climbing Instructor qualifications. At least 5 of these sessions must have personal reflective comments recorded on DLOG.
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.

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Use the Climbing Wall Development Instructor Skills Checklist

This document can be used during or shortly after your training course to help you identify areas of the syllabus that may require attention.



The Syllabus

Climbing Wall Development Instructors should be competent in the following key areas, all of which will be covered, to a greater or lesser extent, during your training course.
  • Technical Competence (including equipment, belaying and personal skills)
  • Management and Decision Making (including planning, managing participants, decision making, knowledge and demonstration of techniques)
  • Teaching and Learning Skills
  • The Climbing Wall Environment (including access, etiquette and ethics)
Detailed information on each of the above topics can be found in the Climbing Wall Development Instructor handbook (below) and the onus is on you to be competent in all of them by the time you come to assessment - use the Skills Checklist to help with this.
Consolidation The period between training and assessment (often referred to as the consolidation period) varies in length for each person and is an opportunity to develop your skills, paying particular attention to any weaknesses identified during the training course. You will probably have seen new ideas and techniques during training and will therefore need some time to practise and evaluate these before taking the assessment. During this period of consolidation, you are advised to climb at as wide a range of venues as possible, both as an individual and when assisting with the supervision of others. Mountain Training recommends that all but the most experienced candidates allow a minimum of three months between training and assessment. There is currently no time limit on the validity of a training course and some candidates may take several years to complete the qualification.

If you would like some more experience belaying lead climbers, why not volunteer to belay at the Youth Climbing Series in England and Wales, Scotland or Ireland.

The Mountain Training Association

Join the Mountain Training Association and be part of a community of like-minded people on our schemes. The Association offers a range of workshops for trainee and qualified leaders and coaches across the disciplines, as well as a quarterly magazine, gear deals/discounts, a monthly newsletter and an insurance deal. You can join the Association at any point after you have registered on one of Mountain Training's leadership/coaching schemes.

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Assessment Before you book onto a Climbing Wall Development Instructor assessment, make sure you have done the following:
  • You must have attended a Climbing Wall Development Instructor (or Climbing Wall Leading Award) training course or have been granted exemption from training.
  • You must be familiar with the syllabus.
  • You must have logged a minimum of 100 different lead climbs, at least half of which must be a grade of French 6a or above at 3 different major climbing walls.
  • You must have assisted or observed at least 5 teaching leading sessions delivered by a suitably qualified person. These 5 sessions must have personal reflective comments recorded on DLOG.
  • You must have physically attended and completed (i.e. not online) a first aid course which involved at least one full day or eight hours of instruction and included an element of assessment.
The Climbing Wall Development Instructor assessment is a minimum of 6 hours.

Assessments are run by one of our approved providers and 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.

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OfQual Regulation of Mountain Training England

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"Being able to teach lead climbing is a good skill to have and has led to some rewarding work with climbers looking to progress."

Graham Little - July 2016
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"I think the hardest thing was learning how to deal with people when it comes to falling. I learned some really good techniques to make it fun and a little bit less scary."

Nicola Reeve - May 2017
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"The most challenging thing was to realise I was ready for the assessment. I like to make sure I am always fully prepared, but in reality I could have completed the award a lot sooner than I did! The best thing is that I get to teach lead climbing on a regular basis!"

Zoe Spriggins - May 2017

Support & Development

Join the Mountain Training Association and be part of a community of like-minded people on our schemes.

MTA offers a range of workshops for trainee and qualified leaders and coaches across the disciplines, as well as great deals and discounts

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