Are you looking into building a climbing wall at home during this period of home confinements and restrictions on going out? When you have finally set your mind to making it happen and start creating the wall structure, one of the most important investments are the little but highly important rock climbing holds.
However, rock climbing holds come in so many shapes, material, sizes and quantities, so it’s important to get good and reliable brands that will justify this big and hefty purchase. Read on to find out what our top pick for the best climbing holds out there, for both you and your kids!
How to Choose the Best Climbing Holds
To choose the best climbing holds, you first need to understand your purpose and objective.
Do you want to train crimp strength?
Have somewhere for your kids to climb?
You can’t make your purchase before answering a number of important questions, so ask yourself what you will primarily be using them for, the frequency of use and lastly, the target users before buying – is it for yourself, friends or your young children and kids back at home to play?
In a hurry?
If you want to find out what the best climbing holds is, then I’d recommend the Metolius Foundation Hold Sets as the best one.
Advantages of Getting Your Own Climbing Holds
There are so many advantages to having your own home gym and wall and getting your own climbing holds during this recent worldwide virus epidemic. To begin, you can choose exactly the design/ colour/ texture of holds that you want to tailor them to your outdoor or home climbing and training routine. You can make it as colourful as you like or focus more on getting holds that trains up your technical ability in bouldering and rock climbing alike.
Hygiene is the number one factor that makes your personal home climbing gym better than going to a shared climbing gym. You can make sure that whoever climbs it are not random strangers and you do not feel worried about your kids or yourself climbing and falling sick from shared usage.
Additionally, you can mix and match the different types you bought or receive as a climbing gift and eventually build up your own collection of holds and variations. Having your own personal climbing wall at home is so convenient, for the rainy days that you can’t climb outside, or when you don’t feel like making a trip to the climbing gym, or in certain situations where there is a country lockdown and you can’t leave the house, you know where you can train and build your own home playground with a rock wall, slackline and even trampoline!
Features to look out for that differentiate
There are a number of different aspects that you should pay attention to when choosing your climbing holds. First off, the shape of the climbing hold is important to keep in mind, as it will show you what kind of hand grip it will train, such as crimps, jugs or slopers. This is especially important to keep in mind depending on if your wall will be used by children, beginner climbers, or advanced seasoned climbers.
Next, you should pay attention to the size of the climbing hold. As a general rule, larger climbing holds and jugs are easier to hold onto, while smaller crimpier holds tend to be more difficult.
Finally, you should pay attention to the material and texture that your rock climbing holds are made of, as this will affect how they wear and hold up to certain weather conditions. The material that the hold is made of will also influence the texture/ grip and changing the climbing experience. Depending on the shape, different textured holds like a sandstone finish may be easier to grip, while smoother surfaces can be gentler on the fingers and easier to clean too. Wooden slopers, for example, tend to be considered a very advanced hold that would likely not be appropriate for beginners or children.
How to install climbing holds for home wall
To install your own climbing holds in your house, you’ll have to first have your climbing structure/ wall ready. Have a look where in your house would be the best option. Often times, the garage or basement can be the best options. The most popular material to build a home wall is out of plywood. If you have an appropriate size concrete wall available, it’s another great option.
The most important aspect is finding the area with the most possible space to set up a couple of routes. With more routes, you are less likely to get bored of doing the same moves over and over again. After installing the wall, you’ll simply have to drill your holds in to create different routes and boulder problems. The general rule is the farther apart the holds are, the harder the climb will be, and vice versa!
Additionally, the angle that your wall is built has a significant influence on the difficulty of the climbs. A vertical wall will be an appropriate setup for children and beginners, while an angled overhanging wall will be much more difficult. If you have an overhanging wall, you might want to buy bigger jug holds, making it easier to climb on, while smaller holds on a vertical wall could even be appropriate for beginners to intermediate climbers.
Small note, don’t forget to invest in some good and durable crash pads to cushion the falls.
Precautions to Note
Building your own climbing wall is a project that requires extensive design and safety precautions so that you do not have your walls or structures collapsing on you. It’s a good idea to get tips from someone with experience in building and/or carpentry before setting off on doing your own home climbing wall! Make friends with other climbers who have ever installed or build their own home rock climbing gym.
So having heard a bit about whats the critical aspects for building a home gym, here’s our recommendations of the top 11 rock climbing hold brands to consider.
Top 11 Best Rock Climbing Holds to Get:
The Rocky Mountain Bolt On Rock Climbing Holds with Hardware is a monochrome climbing hold set that offers wear-proof, waterproof and UV-proof holds, making it a great option for anyone looking to build their home climbing wall outdoors. They are all-natural holds that are a great option for climbers of all ages. The set comes with a variety of sizes, ranging between jugs and crimps, so you’ll be able to deck out your wall for a multitude of training purposes.
- Wear-proof, waterproof and UV-proof holds
- Made from recycled, natural non-toxic materials
- Only come in one color
- Can’t see the types of holds you’re getting in advance
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This Atomic Climbing Holds set come with 21 premium quality small hand and foot holds. They are bolt-in holds that come with all the necessary hardware and a lifetime warranty. Just keep in mind that the holds are by no means jugs, so they might be a better option for kids with small hands or advanced adult climbers with great footwork.
- Lifetime warranty
- Great for kids or advanced adults due to their small size
- Expensive, comparing how many holds you get to how much you pay
- Not a wide variety of shapes and sizes
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Looking to get in smaller quantity? You can consider the Set of 5 Atomik Climbing Holds.
The Metolius Mountain Gear 75 Climbing Holds set may be our most expensive option, but it is also the biggest and most complete set. With the holds that come in this set, you’ll be practically covered for any hold shape or size that you need. It comes with just about any type of handhold and foothold that you could ever imagine, so you’ll be sure to have a wide variety of options when it comes to setting routes and boulders.
- Wide variety of hold types
- All you need to complete an at-home climbing wall
- Expensive, so they will be an investment
- Can be brittle
- So many parts can be confusing to set up
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Too many? Consider the smaller Set of 5 Metolius Holds.
If you are looking for something cost effective and without requiring too much of a high difficulty ( aiming at beginners or toddlers at home), you can get this set of 24 green textured holds that comes with 2 hold mounts per hold.
- Great Value
- 2 hold mounts for steadier placement
- Beginner level with not much variation
- All the holds are same size and style
- Not suited for advance climbers/ boulders looking to get a good challenge
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The Metolius Foundation Holds Set is just what it describes itself to be. A great foundation for any home climbing wall, it comes with a variety of shapes and sizes of holds. Additionally, it comes with a “How to Build a Home Bouldering Wall” guide, making it a great set for anyone who is trying to get started with their home climbing wall.
- Lots of shapes and sizes
- A variety of colors
- Good for adults and kids alike
- Comes with a “How to Build a Home Bouldering Wall” guide
- Can potentially crack with use
- The holds, both hand and foot, tend to run on the small side
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If you have a young toddler or two at home that you would want to keep them active during their time at home, this Fixe Play basic pack is perfect to convert your house into a play space haven for your kids.
The pack is a compact but functional set, and comes with 8 high quality holds, 3 pieces of climbing rope of varuing lengths ( 1-2 metres). It also provides all the hardware needed t install it into a wooden panel up to 18mm thick. There are also dummy guide instructions for how you can install and assemble it easy and fast.
- Suitable for all ages
- Simple dummy proof set up/ fuss free
- Fun and varied (with ropes too)
- Not many holds unlike other bigger sets
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If you’re building your at home climbing wall for the little ones to enjoy, we’ve got the best option for you. Climbing Monkey Climbing Holds are a kid-friendly set that come in a variety of fun colors. These 25 climbing holds are perfect for creating a fun and unique way for your kids to play and be active.
- Come in a variety of fun colors
- Designed especially for children and their tiny climbing feet
- Made with durable, weather-resistant plastic
- Not suitable for adult climbers
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A few more great runner ups:
As you can see, there are so many things to keep in mind when purchasing a set of climbing holds. That’s why our top pick is the Metolius Foundation Hold Sets. It’s a great way start building an at-home climbing wall, as it comes with a “How to Build a Home Bouldering Wall” booklet and all of the necessary hardware is included.
The variety of different shapes and sizes of holds comes at a reasonable price, meaning that you’ll be able to purchase more of your favorite rock climbing holds and type to expand your climbing wall.