If you’ve been training and competing in “Fitness” for a while you’ve probably climbed, or attempted to learn how to climb a rope at some point.  Either way, you’re probably aware that it not only takes a good amount of strength and muscular endurance, but a good amount of technique as well, to get to the top quickly and efficiently.  Today I’m going to go over two different techniques on how to climb a rope that you can use to make the rope climb your strength in competition. If you were following the Games in 2010, you’ll know that something as simple as knowing how to climb a rope well can mean the difference between the podium and runner up.  EVERYTHING counts in this sport.

The first thing I’m going to go over before I teach you how to climb a rope is protection.  No, not that kind of protection.  Leg protection.  If you’ve ever come screaming down a rope with gassed out arms, you’ll know the pain and damage a rope can cause your shins.  So when you’re practicing these drills or heading to your next competition make sure you’re using one of the following:

  1. Long socks (that cover up to your knees)
  2. Compression pants
  3. Shin Skins (Personally, I swear by the Shin Skins made by Rocktape… they also happen to be great for box jumps and any pulling off the ground)

Below you will find a full view video of each technique, as well as a close-up to help you better understand what is happening with the feet.  These techniques are not hard but they can be difficult to visualize until you get it the first time.

How to Climb a Rope – Method 1: Hook & Lift

  1. Jump as high as you can
  2. Bring knees up to elbows as high as you can , clamp hard, and stand up
  3. Kick out, rather than down
  4. Hand over hand to climb up the rope
  5. Repeat

How to Climb a Rope – Method 2: Wrap & Stomp

  1. Jump as high as you can
  2. Stick one leg out, wrap over, around, and underneath before clamping down with the opposite foot
  3. Stand up, hand over hand to climb the rope
  4. Repeat
  5. Very secure but a lot slower

You may not get these right away.  You may find it a bit confusing, but once you have the muscle memory down you’ll be able to climb a rope with a lot more ease, and a lot less energy. Give it a shot!


Rock Guards (2015) Rogue Fitness. Retrieved from http://www.roguefitness.com/rock-guards-manifesto