Bouldering in Joshua Tree

Bouldering in Joshua Tree
Ronnie 15 feet off deck on the classic White Rastafarian.

Monday, June 6, 2011

Tips on pursuing rock climbing as an amputee

1. You can locate an indoor climbing wall near your home by visiting You will find that most staff at your local climbing wall is very friendly and can further assist helping you pursue the sport or just participate on a recreational basis.

2. Below the knee amputees can climb with their prosthesis. They can put a rock climbing shoe right over their prosthetic foot to help them climb recreationally.

3. I recommend that above the knee amputees climb without their prosthesis or set up in a "stubby" style with the foot right under the socket. Manuevering a full prosthetic leg can be cumbersome and take away from the effectiveness and enjoyability of climbing.

4. There are two companies that make special prosthetic climbing feet. The first is TRS Prosthetics, which creates the Eldo Axis Z prosthetic climbing foot. The second is Jeff Erenstone, who creates another similar prosthetic climbing foot. Both feet share the similar properties of being shorter and stiffer than your average prosthetic foot and are covered in climbing rubber. I highly recommend either of these feet if you plan on making climbing a routine activity or just something you do from time to time.

Jeff Erenstone -

Bob Radocy - TRS Prosthetics -

5. Climbing can be difficult, but as with anything it gets easier and more natural over time. If you think it might be something you would enjoy, don't give up on it right away. Tenacity is the key to doing anything well, especially as an amputee.

6. Climbing is about journey and adventure. It has a really neat community of people that will embrace you with open arms. It gives back what you put into it. It can be as simple as a recreational activity or it can become a lifestyle. It has given me so much that I have wanted nothing more than to be able to pass it onto others. If you ever have questions about climbing, other sports, or just being an amputee in general feel free to contact me any time. Thanks again!


  1. Solid tips. Im AK and aiming to try climbing for first time at the end of the month.
    Think I'll get my prosthetist to make a stubby.

    Thanks for the help!

  2. As a rock climbing beginner there's so much to learn. I know when I started out I found the amount of equipment mind boggling! It needn't be. Here's my handy guide to the 6 essential pieces of equipment you'll need as a rock climbing beginner - what to buy, what it's used for and how much you should expect to pay.

    climbing tips

  3. Hi, I have a friend with a leg amputated up to his hip. He is eager to try climbing. We will go top rope of course. Are there any dangerous moments to be considered? For example with harness being just around one leg?
    Thanks a lot.

    1. A standard harness should still be able to hold your friend. Top roping is relatively the safest form of climbing and especially for your friend as there is little to no chance of him taking a 10ft+ fall. I would recommend keeping the "hanging upside down like spiderman" to a minimum but other than that, have fun.