Women In Sport: Discover The Thrill Of Bouldering With Climbing Athlete Xu Liting

Climbing your way to the top

You may have heard of wall-climbing or rope-climbing, but have you also heard of bouldering? If you’re curious to know more about this sport, climbing athlete Xu Liting’s passion for bouldering may just convince you to try it.

In 2014, Liting won 2nd place at the IFSC Oceania and Australian Bouldering Championships. She was also the first Singaporean woman to climb a V11 grade wall in Bishop, USA in the same year. Fast forward to the present, she’s still an active climber. If she’s inspired you to try the sport, check out what she has to say about the basics of bouldering with Singaporean host Naomi Yeo, as well as top tips on how you can literally climb your way to the top even as a beginner.

Wall-climbing versus rope-climbing versus bouldering

“Bouldering is like a subset of rock climbing. It’s still considered climbing but climbing is separated into three different disciplines,” shares Liting. Compared to the others, bouldering doesn’t use any ropes or harnesses, so your safety relies mostly on the pads on the wall and the floor. Talk about a different kind of adrenaline rush!

Top tip: falling is key

Bouldering seems scary, but Liting said that in this sport, falling is actually an essential skill to learn. There’s a different kind of rush when you have to climb back up to try again and reach your goal. After all, “climbing is 99% falling,” she said. Quite metaphorical, don’t you think?

Bouldering is all about problem-solving and learning more about your body

The idea of climbing seems easy, but bouldering actually has a set of routes and difficulties based on the wall you’re trying to climb. This makes each climb unique; it challenges you to think of the entire route as a puzzle that you have to solve with your body. Not sure about the moves you're making mid-climb? Go back a step or fall and then try again. The satisfying feeling of finishing one route will definitely have you coming back for more.

Curious to know more about Bouldering? Watch the full video here to learn more about this fascinating sport.

This story is created in partnership with SportSG.

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