Saturday, October 27, 2007

Free climbing
Free climbing is the most common style of rock climbing, in which the climber uses no artificial aids to make upwards progress. In this way, the climber will use only hands, feet and other parts of the body. Ropes and protective equipment are used only for protection against the consequences of a fall. The term is used in contrast to aid climbing, a much less prevalent practice in which equipment is used directly (i.e. pulled or stood on) in order to make progress.
Styles of free climbing include traditional climbing, sport climbing, free soloing and bouldering.
The term free climbing is commonly confused with free soloing by non-climbers. This is a type of free climbing where no rope or protective equipment is used for protection, and a fall would clearly be disastrous. In contrast, the vast majority of free climbers will make use of such equipment as a safeguard when climbing at height.
Free climbing "guidelines" from a U.S. perspective (Stonemaster's, et al.): the adventure of exploring the unknown, living on the cutting edge of the possible and the impossible, and striving to go one better. In light of those ideals, the climbing community espoused a goal of avoiding behavior that sullies (makes less challenging in any way beyond personal improvement) a climbing route.

See also

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