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3 Reasons Why You Should Coach Climbing for Kids

Updated: May 31

Thinking about coaching one of the teams from your local climbing gym’s youth programs? Do it! And here’s why.


First and foremost, start coaching kids for the personal education you will get. Learning how to teach climbing skills will give you a better understanding of utilizing those climbing skills. In a coaching position, you will most likely learn from other coaches in a way you can’t research yourself. These mentors usually aren’t free, so the opportunity to work alongside individuals with a larger climbing knowledge base than you is hard to pass up.

On top of all the climbing education you will receive, working with kids is also an educational experience. Kids look at the world differently than adults, and working with and learning from them is fascinating. Adults aren’t always the boss!

The External Reward

The external rewards of coaching kids at your local climbing gym include a free membership to your gym and a little extra pocket change every pay period. In most gyms, you can commit to as little as two hours per week coaching some youth programs and still receive a free gym membership. And let’s be real, climbing gym memberships are getting expensive, so cutting that cost every month would be awesome.

Being a staff member of the climbing gym, even if it’s just a few hours a week, gives you a better chance of making friends with the other staff members. Most climbing gym staff members are psyched about climbing, so it’s a great way to form life-long belaytionships. Your co-coaches could become your next climbing mentor, trusty bouldering spotter, or best friend. These types of relationships are what make the sport of climbing so special.

The Internal Reward

Finally, the internal reward is the most important reason to start coaching kids. Kids constantly need an adult role model, especially one other than their parents; their coaches usually fill that need. As a coach, you have the power to positively impact every child you work with. Whether it’s through climbing, teaching them how to excel in the sport and to incorporate climbing into the rest of their lives, or if it’s just listening to them when they have a bad day at school and creating a fun and safe environment for them to thrive in a while at climbing practice. It feels so good to affect the kids positively.

You can form positive relationships with your little climbers, sometimes lasting a lifetime. If you do it your entire life, you might not remember every kid you coach, but those kids will definitely remember you. Think back to some of your best coaches or teachers you had growing up. What kind of positive impact did they have on you, and how did it affect your life? The opportunity to pay it forward to another kid’s life is priceless.


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