There are two main types of rock climbing harness out there. An all around harness, which is more comfortable and has a lot of features, and a sports climbing harness, which is much lighter and intended for high performance. Whether it's utilized for sports or not, rock climbing is considered an extreme activity. Nothing is more important than the reliability of your equipment, thus, knowing the right harness to buy is vital for your safety.
What You Need To Look For When Buying A Rock Climbing Harness
Even the world's best rock climbers need to exercise safety as much as we do. Aside from using a comfortable harness where you can easily move and climb, you have to make sure it can hold your weight in case you slip or fall. Rock climbing is not as easy as trail hiking and it needs the right equipment to support you. What you need to look for in buying a rock climbing harness are the safety standards, comfort, and some accessories you'll be needing for the climb. Whether it's for sports climbing or just having a little fun outdoors, you'll pretty much need the same harness features so here are some shopping tips to guide you before you hit the sports store.
1. Adjustable leg loops
Most professional rock climbers have smaller legs compared to casual climbers. If you're in between sizes, you may need a harness that fits just right by being able to adjust the leg loops. Harnesses that don't have adjustable leg loops are lighter and a little more simple, but your equipment should be versatile for that casual climb.
2. Speed adjust buckles
One cool harness feature is the speed-adjust buckle or self-locking buckle. It's really quick to take the harness on and off, which is very convenient. All you need to do when putting on the harness is pull it tight and you're done!
3. Breathable Mesh Waistbands
Harnesses with thicker padding are less comfortable. Breathable mesh waistbands are the best while standing compared to the traditional designs. Less padding means less back sweat and a more comfy climb.
4. Molded Gear Loops
Choose a harness that has nice molded gear loop designs. The gear loops should stick out for you to easily clip additional gear or equipment that you need for the climb. The Black Diamond Momentum is a fine example for a harness with model gear loops.
Watch this video by EpicTV Climbing Daily for the best all-around climbing harness.
Finding a lightweight sport-climbing harness is easy in my experience. It's typically as durable as most all around harnesses though it doesn't feel too comfortable when you fall. Choosing a harness with the most important comfort and safety features can be quite challenging so take note of these shopping tips to help you out.
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Featured Image Via outdoor gear lab