rules & format

Guide to rock climbing competitions
at City Summit

City Summit works in partnership with Sport Climbing Western Australia (SCWA), the peak body for competition climbing in WA.  Competitions held at our centre for lead and boulder rock climbing will match the format and guidelines put out by Sport Climbing Australia (SCA).


Competition climbing separates competitors into several different categories depending on age, gender and ability to provide the best competition environment for all competitors.  Categories are further divided into Male & Female.

Youth Climbers

Junior – Competitors born 1999/2000
Youth A – Competitors aged 16 or 17 (born 2001/2002)
Youth B – Competitors aged 14 or 15 (born 2003/2004)
Youth C – Competitors aged 12 or 13 (born 2005/2006)
Youth D – Competitors aged 11 or younger (born 2007 or after)

* Youth A or Junior competitors wishing to compete in Open A/B categories will have to pay and register in both.

Adult Climbers

Open A – Competitors born 2001 or before
Open B –
Competitors born 2001 or before (Intermediate)
Open C – Competitors born 2001 or before (Novice)
Masters – Competitors born 1977 or before

*Youth competitors are able to compete in an adult category, except during  SCA sanctioned State Titles where only Youth A, Juniors or Australian team members can compete in Adult category Open A.

Climbing Styles

There are 3 disciplines of competition climbing; Speed, Lead and Bouldering. Western Australia does not currently have a facility that can offer Speed Climbing. Depending on the competitors category they may compete in a slightly different format to other categories.

Lead Competition

Roped climbing done to a minimum length of 10 meters. Youth C, Youth D and Open C categories compete on a Top Rope system, all other categories compete on lead. A belayer is provided for all climbers at all stages of competition.

There are a maximum of 3 rounds for the competition consisting of; 2 non- identical qualifying climbs, 1 semi-final climb and 1 final climb. A semi-final climb may not be required if there are a small number of competitors in a category.

The qualifying and semi-final round will be a Flash format meaning the route is demonstrated to you either live or in video. The Final round is On-Sight format meaning climbers will be in isolation until competing and will not have seen anyone attempt the route.

Climbs will be clearly marked on the wall and competitors will have 1 attempt on each climb. Points are scored per hold reached and/or used on a climb. In finals, times taken will be recorded as a means of separating competitors who reach the same point on a climb. There is a 30 second viewing time and a maximum of 6 minutes climbing time allowed per route for qualifiers and 8 minutes for finals.

Boulder Competition

Bouldering is a style of climbing done at a maximum height of 4.5 metres without ropes and climbers are protected by a crash-pad.  There are 2 main formats used in bouldering competitions; BoulderJam and World Cup Format. Competitions commonly use a combination of both formats.

The BoulderJam format consists of 5-7 problems of varying difficulty to be completed in a 2 hour time period. Competitors climb together over the time period and are able to view other climbers attempts. This format is commonly used for qualifying rounds.

World Cup Format consists of 4-5 problems for each category, competitors have 4 minutes climbing time for each problem followed by a 4 minute rest period before rotating to the next climb. Competitors are held in isolation until they start their climbing rotation. During a climbers rest period they do not get to view any other climbers.

In all formats a judge is allocated to each problem. Climbs will be clearly marked on the wall with a bonus hold and finish hold for each problem.  Scoring is based on number of attempts to reach the designated bonus and/or finish hold.

Speed Climbing

Speed Climbing takes place on a 15m wall with 2 climbers racing on 2 identical standardised climbs. There is currently no facility in WA capable of hosting a speed climbing event.

Competitors climb twice in the qualifying round with the average of both climbs determining who competes in the finals.   The current world record is a mind boggling 5.48 seconds.

youth climbing competitions perth
perth lead competition
logan barber climbing competitor