Types of Hold

The standard disclaimers about how dangerous climbing is and how unreliable anything is you read anywhere apply here as well. This site is far from definitive (and probably far from accurate).    It is here for the amusement of myself and friends and possibly to shed some light, though I don't mind a little obfuscation now and again either. Various parts have been adapted and pilfered from sources found hither and yon, though I have tried to make all entries mostly original.     So please read, but remember that responsibility for safe climbing is your own.



1. Jug

The greatest and most wonderful type of hold. A hold where you can curl all of your fingers into the hold, as if it were, say, a large jug. Often known as "Thank God" holds, as that is what is usually shouted when you find one at the end of a long series of desperate moves. If you have any strength left, you can hang onto these for ever.....If you get one on a route, hang off it, shake out, have a cuppa, generally thank god for putting it there, and..............relax......

An example below...

2. Crimp

Generally less well regarded, a hold where you are using your finger strength to increase the friction to a point where it will hold you. Again, example below.

Prolonged use of these holds is tiring. Find a Jug, quick.

3. Sloper

Universally loathed, these holds have nothing positive. All you do is get as much skin on them as possible and hope the friction is enough to hold you. Sometime it does....and sometimes it doesnt....

Nasty routesetters set them on hard routes just after overhangs. You slog your way up the overhang, reach round to pull yourself over the lip, praying for a jug, and what do you get - one of these. Horrible.

4. Fingerpocket

A pocket you can get fingers in. Generally a couple as over that it might as well be a jug. Generally liked as they are very positive, but not as nice as jugs...

5. Undercut

Basically an upside-down jug. Again, well regarded as very positive if you are above them. you can also swing up on them with reasonable ease.

6. Others

There are loads of different holds - especially outside, where you get jams, sidepulls, fingerlocks, etc. However the above is a start and I'll add to the above as and when the occasion arises!