When the next summer Olympics rolls around in 2020, indoor rock climbing will be included as one of the many events to grace the world stage. The sport has been growing in popularity for some time now, with rock climbing gyms popping up nationwide. With the sport now stepping more into the mainstream as an Olympic event, even more people will be inspired to try it out. Therefore, the question must be asked: are rock climbing gyms dangerous?
Is Indoor Rock Climbing Safe?
Even if a rock climbing gym makes safety its number one priority, indoor rock climbing accidents can happen. Climbing accidents that have made headlines in recent years include, but are not limited to, the following:
- In May, the Daily Mail ran a story, including a video, of a woman crashing to the ground at a climbing gym after her instructor did not lock off the rope.
- A 52-year-old Texas woman died after losing her footing and falling 30 feet at a gym, according to the NY Daily News.
- The family of a 13-year-old boy who fell off a rock-climbing wall in Florida filed a lawsuit against an indoor playground. The suit claims the boy fell due to lack of supervision. He suffered a broken arm and leg as a result of the fall and had to undergo surgery.
- Ashima Shiraishi, a 15-year-old who is considered by many to be one of the best rock climbers in the world, suffered injuries at a climbing gym in Georgia after falling 45 feet, according to National Geographic.