CWA Blog

The Climbing Wall Association's blog is a place for indoor climbing professionals to find useful and relevant information from industry and business experts. Stay on top of best practices, thought leadership, and trends by subscribing to our newsletter!

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6 Ways to Retain Your Members
6 Ways to Retain Your Members

You’ve gotten new members in the door, and now there’s a new challenge: keeping them engaged so they become loyal, long-term members. Conventional fitness clubs track their membership trends closely – it’s well-established that membership spikes significantly right after... Continue Reading

Date posted05/6/2019


Focus on Workplace Safety – Eye Protection for Workers in Climbing Facilities
Focus on Workplace Safety – Eye Protection for Workers in Climbing Facilities

Despite how the muscles in your forearms might feel while climbing, the muscles that control our eyes are the most active in the human body. Likewise, our eyes, part of our nervous system, are one of our most complex organs, second only to the brain. Even though only 1/6 of our eye is exposed to... Continue Reading

Date posted04/23/2019


Indoor Climbing Programs for Boomers, Part I - The Boomer Opportunity
Indoor Climbing Programs for Boomers, Part I - The Boomer Opportunity

My Story I’m just a flatlander Iowan, but I believe the information and lessons I’ve learned as the instructor for Climb Iowa’s Boomer Climbers Movement Class could be valuable for your climbing gym operation. Ten years ago, at age 63, I walked into an REI flagship store with my... Continue Reading

Date posted04/19/2019


The Keys to Cultural Leadership
The Keys to Cultural Leadership

While there are many definitions of leadership, I recently came across one that I thought stood out from the rest. Leadership expert, Warren Bennis, explains, "Leadership is the capacity to translate vision into reality." Accordingly, a company has a vision that it wants to execute; the leader is... Continue Reading

Date posted04/8/2019


Building Your Team's Performance and Cooperation With Some Simple Activities
Building Your Team's Performance and Cooperation With Some Simple Activities

Posted By Bix Firer and Pat Brehm, Monday, April 8, 2019 Establishing buy-in and cooperation from the young climbers in a climbing program must go beyond simply establishing a set of rules and reactively enforcing them. Rather, it is important that the structure of the program is... Continue Reading

Date posted04/8/2019


Streamlining Development in Indoor Climbing Gyms
Streamlining Development in Indoor Climbing Gyms

Developing is “growing or becoming more mature, advanced or elaborate,” according to Google dictionary. You, your company, and the climbing industry as a whole are all developing all the time, but are you getting the most out of your development process? This article will introduce a... Continue Reading

Date posted03/26/2019


One Small Step (or how a close call changed my routesetting life)
One Small Step (or how a close call changed my routesetting life)

When I started climbing about 28 years ago, there were no climbing gyms around, so our dad built us our own little steep woody where my love for routesetting and climbing holds was born. Today I’m a routesetting nerd, a gear freak, and a hold-aficionado. I’m passionate about every... Continue Reading

Date posted03/24/2019


Member Spotlight: The Gravity Vault
Member Spotlight: The Gravity Vault

Gravity Vault Founder Lucas Kovalcik was partway through grad school when he decided that New Jersey could use a climbing gym. Together with Tim Walsh, he opened the first Gravity Vault in 2005. After four years, the pair launched a second location, and in 2013 the first franchisee-owned location... Continue Reading

Date posted03/13/2019


Let's Get Engaged!
Let's Get Engaged!

Employee engagement is a hot topic, and rightfully so. Companies that have a high level of success also have a high level of engaged employees. And no, I don’t mean vows and bridal bouquets. I mean “engaged” in the company’s mission statement and core values. Most... Continue Reading

Date posted03/11/2019


Seven of the Best Citizen Climbing Comps in the US
Seven of the Best Citizen Climbing Comps in the US

Every year, more members are looking to test their skills as gym climbing grows in popularity. And for those with a competitive streak, there’s no better (or more fun) way to gauge progression than a competition at their local gym. Rallies and meetups at iconic climbing areas are all the... Continue Reading

Date posted02/19/2019


The Three Most Important Pieces of Personal Protective Equipment for Climbing Wall Workers
The Three Most Important Pieces of Personal Protective Equipment for Climbing Wall Workers

Climbing wall workers are confronted with a number of potential hazards to be protected against. Personal protective equipment (PPE) is the term given to wearable devices and clothing used in the workplace to protect workers from various hazards. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration... Continue Reading

Date posted02/13/2019


Member Spotlight: Triangle Rock Club
Member Spotlight: Triangle Rock Club

Climbing gym operators often bring a diverse set of experiences to running a gym, but few more so than Joel Graybeal, Managing Partner at Triangle Rock Club. After working as an aerospace engineer at the Pentagon, he worked as a banker for 14 years before joining the ownership team at TRC in... Continue Reading

Date posted02/4/2019