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A bouldering mat or crash pad is a foam pad used for protection when bouldering. Bouldering mats help prevent climbers from injuring themselves when falling from short heights.
Bouldering mats are made in various sizes and styles. The most common is a "bi-fold" mattress, about 8–10 centimetres (3–4 in) thick and about 1 by 1.2 metres (3 by 4 ft) in size, which can be folded in half for easy transport. There are also bi-fold mats of other sizes and tri-fold pads that fold in thirds (which tend to be larger). Smaller, thinner mats are also used to keep shoes clean, to sit on during sit starts, or cover gaps between larger mats.
Bouldering mats often contain two or three different kinds of foam. Softer foam below firmer, higher density foam prevents a climber's foot from sinking through the foam and either impacting the ground or getting stuck in the mat, which would increase the chance of injury. Mats are often used to cover dangerous sections of the ground below a climb, such as protruding rocks or grass tufts. Usually mats are paired with one or two spotters, who try to ensure that a falling climber lands on the mat and does so safely.
Bouldering mats often have shoulder straps so that they can be worn while hiking to and between boulders. Many mats also often have pockets for storage, or straps that allow climbers to turn the pad into a pack by stuffing other gear inside the folds.
Bi-fold mats come in three designs: "taco", "hinge", and "hybrid".Taco mats are a single section of foam that bends in middle when folded. Hinge mats are two sections of foam connected with a hinge. Hybrid mats feature a single bending section of foam on top of two separate hinge-connected pads.
Bouldering is a form of free climbing that is performed on small rock formations or artificial rock walls without the use of ropes or harnesses. While bouldering can be done without any equipment, most climbers use climbing shoes to help secure footholds, chalk to keep their hands dry and to provide a firmer grip, and bouldering mats to prevent injuries from falls. Unlike free solo climbing, which is also performed without ropes, bouldering problems are usually less than six metres (20 ft) tall. Traverses, which are a form of boulder problem, require the climber to climb horizontally from one end to another. Artificial climbing walls allow boulderers to climb indoors in areas without natural boulders. In addition, bouldering competitions take place in both indoor and outdoor settings.
Climbing is the activity of using one's hands, feet, or any other part of the body to ascend a steep topographical object. It is done for locomotion, recreation and competition, and within trades that rely on ascension; such as emergency rescue and military operations. It is done indoors and out, on natural and man-made structures.
In rock climbing, mountaineering, and other climbing disciplines, climbers give a grade to a climbing route or boulder problem, intended to describe concisely the difficulty and danger of climbing it. Different types of climbing each have their own grading systems, and many nationalities developed their own, distinctive grading systems.
Climbing protection is any of a variety of devices employed to reduce risk and protect others while climbing rock and ice. It includes such items as nylon webbing and metal nuts, cams, bolts, and pitons.
A ladder is a vertical or inclined set of rungs or steps.
Traditional climbing is a style of rock climbing in which the climber places all the necessary protection gear required to arrest any falls as they are climbing, and then removes it when the pitch is complete. Traditional bolted aid climbing means the bolts were placed while on lead and/or with hand drills. Traditional climbing carries a higher level of risk than bolted sport climbing, as the climber may not have placed the safety equipment correctly while trying to ascend the route; for some of the world's hardest climbs, there may not be sufficient cracks or features in the rock that can accept protection gear, and the climb can only be safely attempted by bolting as a sport climb.
A climbing harness is a device which allows a climber access to the safety of a rope. It is used in rock and ice climbing, abseiling, and lowering; this is in contrast to other activities requiring ropes for access or safety such as industrial rope work, construction, and rescue and recovery, which use safety harnesses instead.
In camping, a ground pad, sleeping pad, thermal pad, sleeping mat, or roll mat is lightweight pad, common among hikers, backpackers and budget travelers, often used in conjunction with a sleeping bag. Its purpose is to provide padding and thermal insulation. All types currently available use air as their primary form of insulation.
This glossary of climbing terms is a list of definitions of terms and jargon related to rock climbing and mountaineering. The specific terms used can vary considerably between different English-speaking countries; many of the phrases described here are particular to the United States and the United Kingdom.
A wide range of equipment is used during rock or any other type of climbing that includes equipment commonly used to protect a climber against the consequences of a fall.
Abseiling, also known as rappelling, is the controlled descent of a steep slope, such as a rock face, by moving down a rope. When abseiling the person descending controls their own movement down the rope, in contrast to lowering off in which the rope attached to the person descending is paid out by their belayer.
Free climbing is a form of rock climbing in which the climber may use climbing equipment such as ropes and other means of climbing protection, but only to protect against injury during falls and not to assist progress. The climber makes progress by using physical ability to move over the rock via handholds and footholds. Free climbing more specifically may include traditional climbing, sport climbing, bouldering and most forms of solo climbing. Free climbing a multi-pitch route means free-climbing each of its pitches in a single session. At the end of each pitch, climbers anchor themselves to belay stations where they can rest.
Sport climbing is a form of rock climbing that relies on permanent anchors, permanently fixed into the rock for climber protection, in which a rope that is attached to the climber is clipped into the anchors to arrest a fall; it can also involve climbing short distances with a crash pad underneath as protection. This is in contrast to traditional climbing where climbers must place removable protection as they climb. Sport climbing usually involves lead climbing and toproping techniques, but free solo and deep-water solo climbing on sport routes is also sometimes possible.
Lead climbing is a climbing style, predominantly used in rock climbing. In a roped party one climber has to take the lead while the other climbers follow. The lead climber wears a harness attached to a climbing rope, which in turn is connected to the other climbers below the lead climber. While ascending the route, the lead climber periodically connects the rope to protection equipment for safety in the event of a fall. This protection can consist of permanent bolts, to which the climber clips quickdraws, or removable protection such as nuts and cams. One of the climbers below the lead climber acts as a belayer. The belayer gives out rope while the lead climber ascends and also stops the rope when the lead climber falls or wants to rest.
Rock climbing is a sport in which participants climb up, across, or down natural rock formations or artificial rock walls. The goal is to reach the summit of a formation or the endpoint of a usually pre-defined route without falling. Rock climbing is a physically and mentally demanding sport, one that often tests a climber's strength, endurance, agility and balance along with mental control. Knowledge of proper climbing techniques and the use of specialized climbing equipment is crucial for the safe completion of routes.
Mats are used for safety in gymnastics, and in training new skills. They are usually a piece of foam ranging from 1.5-28 inches thick, covered in a vinyl or plastic lining. The foam ranges in density from relatively firm to very soft.
Sports equipment, sporting equipment, also called sporting goods, are the tools, materials, apparel, and gear used to compete in a sport and varies depending on the sport. The equipment ranges from balls, nets, and protective gear like helmets. Sporting equipment can be used as protective gear or a tool used to help the athletes play the sport. Over time, sporting equipment has evolved because sports have started to require more protective gear to prevent injuries. Sporting equipment may be found in any department store or specific sporting equipment shops.
Spotting is a technique used in climbing, especially in bouldering, where the climbers are close to the ground and ropes are not normally used. The spotter stands below the climber, with arms raised or at the ready. If the climber falls, the spotter does not catch the climber, but redirects the climber's fall to land safely on a bouldering mat. At the very least the spotter ensures that the climber's head and back do not strike the ground directly. If the climber jumps down, the spotter can also help prevent stumbles and injuries on uneven ground. The spotter should stand with fingers together to avoid broken fingers.
Tree stands or deer stands are open or enclosed platforms used by hunters. The platforms are secured to trees in order to elevate the hunter and give them a better vantage point. A tripod stand is a similar device, but because it is freestanding rather than attached to a tree, it is not technically a tree stand.
Slab climbing is a type of rock climbing where the rock face is at an angle less steep than vertical. It is characterized by balance- and friction-dependent moves on very small holds. It is often not leadable, or climbable from the ground up, unless it has pre-drilled bolts to protect the climb, making most slab climbs either top rope climbing or sport climbing. Special techniques such as smearing are necessary to climb slab. It is a type of face climbing and is distinctly different from crack climbing. Slab climbing is a relatively new area of climbing, having become more popular in the last 30 years, and some of the highest graded routes are currently being realized.