Types of Climbing Hold

Crimps

Crimps are small, often incut (or flat) holds that are only thick enough to fit the first joint (or two) of the fingers. Crimps usually force climbers’ hands into a distinctive, “crimp” shape resulting in the knuckles just behind the fingernails settling into a collapsed position.

Edges

Edges are similar to crimps, but can be larger. An edge usually has a flatter gripping surface that can be held more easily in an open-handed position.

 

Features

Features are super-sized, eye-catching holds with multiple gripping surfaces. They’re often used in competitions because of their good looks and the thought-provoking climbing they evoke.

 

Incuts

Incuts have a “positive” or incut gripping surface—allowing climbers to sink their fingers behind the hold, thereby giving them great purchase.

 

Jugs (or Buckets)

Jugs (also called “buckets”) are very large and deeply incut holds—often big enough to fit at least one full hand. Jugs are, by definition, very easy to hold onto and move off of. They make you feel like a good climber!

 

Slopers

The very opposite of incuts, slopers are rounded holds with no positive surfaces. These are difficult to hold onto and require good technique and strength. If you lack the skills and might to use these holds, they’ll be a great training tool for you!

 

Pinches

As the name suggests, pinches are holds that are squeezed between the fingers and the thumb. Pinches can be slopey or incut, wide or narrow. These are great for improving hand strength.

 

Pockets

A pocket is a hold with a hole into which climbers insert one or more fingers. A pocket that only accommodates one finger is called a mono.

 

Jibs (or Chips)

These are tiny, tiny holds usually used as foot holds. Most commonly mounted to the wall with wood screws (instead of bolts and t-nuts), they can be placed anywhere and require more precise footwork than other foot holds. 

 

 

 


 

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