You wouldn't think rock climbing athletes would be affected by a global pandemic. What comes to mind is wide open skies, harrowing cliffs, and time spent in places others can't physically get to. Add in a bivouac on a mountainside or the solitary "van-life" that nomadic climbers are drawn to.... and it might be the most social-distanced sport that exists.
But, that isn't exactly the case. Especially for the groundbreaking sport of Speed Climbing.
Speed climbing is as similar to traditional rock climbing as it is to a track meet. And the sport usually takes place on an indoor climbing wall, with multiple athletes racing up the wall with designed moves.
Because of the very social aspects of this new form of "sprint-climbing", athletes, climbing gym owners have all had to deal with the difficulties brought by COVID-19. For the sport's governing body in Canada, though, those difficulties have led to an exciting opportunity for speed-climbing athletes across the country.
From February through March of 2022, Climbing Escalade Canada will be accepting video submissions as a qualifier for the 2022 Youth Speed Nationals. Through an interactive activity in their Virtual Tryout, Canadian athletes ages 14 to 19 can upload a video of a full speed run and be reviewed by CEC's national team coaches and event organizers.
MORE INFO: Climbing Canada Youth Speed Nationals Tryout
The tryout will be open until March 27th, 2022 and the top participants will be selected for the in-person national event after that date. Only submissions from athletes who are eligible to compete at Youth Nationals will be reviewed. Only Canadian Citizens or Residents, aged 14 to 19 as of December 31, 2022 are eligible to participate.
To see the event or share it with an athlete who would be interested, click HERE.