The rock climbing harness is an equipment which helps climbers attain security and safety as they try to take on either natural or man-made walls and mountains.
The harness fits over the waist and the legs of its user and it comes with attachments for additional gear and ropes. If the harness fits as intended, it will be capable of supporting the body without being uncomfortable or restricting movement.
Based on the kind of climbing the user is into, there are harnesses that are more fitting compared to others. There are, in fact, different types of climbing harnesses available to suit varying climbing types. In order to make wise buying decisions when it comes to harnesses, you should be informed about the product.
The climbing harness, along with the belay device, shoes and the chalk bag, is considered as the most important gear in a climber’s range of tools. The harness will ensure that every climb you scale will be safe and free from accidents.
The cost of a harness is fairly affordable, especially compared to other climbing equipment. The kind of harness you will need will be based on the type of climbing activity you often do or plan on undertaking.
Kinds of Climbing Harnesses
When it comes to the different types of climbing harnesses, the sports harness is the first item you should know about. It is lighter compared to other harnesses and has narrow webbing, minimal padding and a few gear loops.
The traditional climbing harness, meanwhile, includes a good number of padding and additional gear loops. There are other kinds of activities like canyoneering which require the use of a harness; however, it has different features compared to the standard climbing harness.
The rock climbing harness includes leg loops and a padded waist. It is built for the comfort of the user and it has removable leg loops plus waist gear loops. The mountaineering kind is composed of non-absorbent materials and is built to be thin and lightweight. It also includes removable leg loops, straps and adjustable loops.
The big wall climbing harness, meanwhile, features additional padding or cushioning and is built for the overall comfort of its user. It comes with a heavy-duty haul loop and has several gear loops thrown in as well.
If you are more into indoor than outdoor wall climbing and if you want to use a harness for sports functions, you should opt for a simple, fuss-free lightweight harness since it can be stripped down quickly and be portable enough for travel.
The buckles for this kind of harness might come as a single or it can be double, manual fastening or automatic. They are pretty simple to get on and off. The harness features only two gear loops because less equipment is required. The belay loop it comes with is usually slimmer to scrimp on weight and the leg loops have less adjustability.
More often than not, sports climbing harnesses do not include adjustment buckles at all. The material it is composed of is often stretchable as well, due to the lack of adjustment buckles.
Traditional climbers require more gear than usual so they have a harness that includes additional gear loops. However, at the same time, the harness should be light and comfortable.
The traditional rock climbing harness includes adjustable leg loops with double, single, manual or automatic closures and it can also include more than four gear loops. The material it is composed of is thicker and it has sturdier cushioning compared to a sports harness. This type of harness also includes additional padding in the lumbar region to help even out the lower back of the user.
The big wall harness is designed for climbers who plan on scaling bigger rock faces which can take longer than usual. Because climbers have to spend lots of time using a harness on such an expedition, this kind of harness usually includes additional padding for overall comfort.
The mountaineering harness, meanwhile, is intended for mixed functions like ice and rock climbing. It is similar in appearance with the traditional climbing harness with four or more gear loops, adjustable leg loops, additional padding and a haul loop. If you want, you can opt for a mountaineering harness composed of thinner material so you can suitably wear it with a backpack.
There are different types of rock climbing harnesses that will suit the kind of climbing you are into. It is important gear for such a sport. Based on the kind of activity you often participate in, harnesses can come in lightweight or simple versions, or you can opt for ones with many gear loops.
The appropriate fit is crucial for every harness since harnesses that fit improperly can cause them to cut the skin of the wearer and they are uncomfortable in general. The right kind of harness will help climbers scale grand heights in total safety, comfort and security.