Indoor Climbing Holds: Types and Uses

Indoor Climbing Holds: Types and Uses

Are you looking to take your indoor climbing game to the next level? Understanding the different types of climbing holds and their uses is essential for improving your skills and technique. In this article, we will explore the various types of indoor climbing holds and how you can utilize them to enhance your climbing experience. Whether you are a beginner or a seasoned climber, this guide will provide you with valuable insights on how to navigate the world of indoor climbing holds.

Types of Indoor Climbing Holds


Jugs are large, easy-to-grip holds that are commonly found in beginner climbing routes. These holds are perfect for climbers to grab onto and pull themselves up with minimal effort. Jugs are often used to build confidence in new climbers and provide a stable grip for more experienced climbers.


Slopers are smooth, rounded holds that require climbers to rely on friction and body positioning to stay on the wall. These holds are challenging to grip and require a strong grip strength and technique to use effectively. Slopers are often used in more advanced climbing routes to test a climber’s ability to maintain balance and control.


Crimps are small, narrow holds that require climbers to use their fingertips to grip onto the wall. These holds are often used in difficult climbing routes to challenge a climber’s finger strength and precision. Crimps can be especially tough on the fingers and are commonly used in training to improve finger strength and endurance.

Uses of Indoor Climbing Holds

Indoor climbing holds serve various purposes beyond just providing handholds and footholds for climbers. They are essential for training, setting routes, and even for competition climbing.

Training Purposes

Indoor climbing holds are crucial for climbers to develop their strength, technique, and endurance. They come in different shapes, sizes, and textures, allowing climbers to practice different types of grips and movements. Climbers can use specific holds to target certain muscle groups or work on specific skills, such as finger strength or footwork. Training with indoor climbing holds can help climbers improve their overall climbing performance and progress to more challenging routes.

Setting Routes

Indoor climbing holds are also used by route setters to create diverse and engaging climbing routes for climbers of all levels. Route setters strategically place holds on the climbing wall to provide a range of challenges, from beginner-friendly routes to advanced and dynamic movements. By using different types of holds, route setters can design routes that test climbers’ strength, agility, and problem-solving skills. Indoor climbing holds are essential tools for route setters to keep climbers engaged and motivated to push their limits.

Competition Climbing

In competition climbing, indoor climbing holds play a significant role in testing climbers’ skills and abilities in a competitive setting. Competitors must navigate through a series of challenging routes that are set with a combination of different holds, requiring them to adapt quickly to various climbing styles and techniques. Indoor climbing holds are carefully selected and arranged to create a fair and exciting competition environment where climbers can showcase their talents and compete against their peers. Competitions often feature innovative and creative use of holds to challenge climbers and push the boundaries of indoor climbing.

In conclusion, indoor climbing holds come in a variety of types and serve different purposes to enhance climbers’ experience and skills. Whether you are a beginner or advanced climber, having a good understanding of the different types of holds and their uses can greatly improve your climbing performance. By incorporating a mix of holds in your climbing routes, you can challenge yourself and continuously improve your climbing abilities. So next time you hit the climbing gym, take note of the different holds available and push yourself to try new challenges. Happy climbing!