New Climbers & FAQ


New to climbing? Start Here.

Island Rock Gym welcomes climbers of all experience levels, including no experience! Climbing movement can be enjoyed by people of nearly any age and fitness level. Come challenge yourself.


1. Fill out a Waiver

Every person entering the gym must have a waiver filled out prior to climbing or stepping onto climbing surfaces. Waivers can be completed online or at Island Rock Gym. Anyone under the age of 18 must have a waiver signed by their parent or court-appointed legal guardian (you cannot sign a waiver for a nephew, grandchild, friend, etc). Anyone entering the gym to supervise a youth climber must fill out a waiver.

2. Watch our Facility Orientation Video

Every participant must watch the Facility Orientation Video either online or at Island Rock Gym.

3. Learn how it works

• Get Started on your own: Drop-In

Adults and Youth 14+

Anyone 14 years and older may climb anytime, unsupervised, without reservations, and without prior experience.

•  Bouldering: Purchase a Day Pass and rent shoes and climbing chalk to climb on our bouldering walls, up to 16 feet high over padded flooring.

•  Auto Belays: Purchase a Day Pass and rent shoes, a harness, and climbing chalk to climb on our roped walls without prior experience or a climbing partner.

Youth 4-13

Youth ages 4-13 may climb anytime without reservations and without any prior experience, however must be supervised by an individual 14 years or older.

•  Bouldering: Purchase a Day Pass and rent shoes and climbing chalk to climb on our bouldering walls, up to 16 feet high over padded flooring.

•  Auto Belays: Purchase a Day Pass and rent shoes, a harness, and climbing chalk to climb on our roped walls without prior experience or a climbing partner.

• Get Started with a staff member: Reservations Required

Adults and Youth 14+

Adults and Youth ages 14+ have multiple class options. Reservations are required. No experience necessary.

•  Climbing Fundamentals: Don’t know where to start? Our Fundamentals class will show you how the gym works, basic technique, and basic climbing terminology.

•  Belay Class: The best way to learn how to belay, use our roped climbing walls, and become a valuable climbing partner.

•  Experience Climbing Package: The best way to have a private instructor show you the ropes. Includes a Day Pass, gear, and 1 hour of instruction.

Youth aged 4-13

Youth ages 4-13 can be dropped off to climb in any of our instructor-led programs and learn how to climb in a fun and safe environment.

•  Experience Climbing Package: The best way to have a private instructor show you the ropes. Includes a Day Pass, gear, and 1 hour of instruction.

•  Youth Programs: Weekly, instructor-led after school climbing clubs. Rock Tots (ages 4-6), Rock Monkeys (ages 7-12). See out Youth page for schedule and pricing.

•  Birthday Parties: The coolest birthday party your kids will ever have!

4. Start Climbing



Frequently Asked Questions

What is Bouldering?

Bouldering is ropeless climbing over padded flooring. All you need is a pair of climbing shoes and climbing chalk! We have an entire area dedicated to bouldering.

What is belaying (Top-Rope)?

Belaying is managing the rope to protect a climber as they ascend a wall. The belayer controls the slack in the rope, catches a climber if they fall, and lowers them to the ground. You can learn how to do it in our Belay Class.

What is an Auto Belay?

Auto Belays automatically belay a climber, thus eliminating the need for a climbing partner. They don’t require any previous knowledge and we can show you how to use them in minutes. Auto Belay Orientations are required and Youth (13 and under) must be actively supervised at all times.

What is the youngest age you allow in the gym?

There is no minimum age in the gym. Our youngest age for youth programming is 4 years old with our Rock Tots class. Children under 4 years old are welcome in our gym but may not be able to climb in all areas due to distance between holds. When not otherwise occupied, our upstairs party room has the best climbing for kids 4 and under.

How do I learn to Belay?

Take our Belay Class! We run our Belay Class on the 2nd and 4th Tuesdays of the month from 6-9 PM. The class includes admission, gear, instruction and a 2-Week Membership.

What happens in the Belay Test?

In order to belay in our gym you must be at least 14 years old and pass our belay test. Any of our Front Desk Staff can administer this test for you and there is no need to make an appointment. In this test you will need to correctly and safely: put on your harness, tie in with a figure-8 follow through, set up the belay device, perform all the safety checks, safely belay, brake, take and lower, as well as demonstrate the verbal commands.