Posted on Mar 07, 2024

Climbing Towards Equality: Honouring Women in Climbing

In recent years, the climbing scene has seen an epic rise of women. Since 2015, female participation in climbing events has soared by over 7%, showing how women are taking the climbing worl. Once confined to the sidelines, women are now taking centre stage, reshaping the landscape of climbing and driving positive change across the community.

In his 2021 paper, "Female Excellence in Rock Climbing likely has an evolutionary origin," Collin Carroll states, "Multiple women feature prominently in the list of top 100 rock climbers, a phenomenon uncommon in other major sports." He hints that the certain musculoskeletal adaptations may narrow the natural performance gap between men and women.

These discoveries emphasise that women possess the innate ability to climb as adeptly as men, and sometimes, even outshine them.

Through mentorship, coaching, and advocacy, women are driving positive change within the climbing community. The burgeoning climbing scene serves as proof of this, with more women climbing and bridging the gender gap in the process.


Women are dominating

Women are dominating

From classic outdoor climbs to intense sport competitions, women are participating in all aspects of climbing. In the great outdoors, women are crushing it. The highest grade, 5.15b (9b), is ascended by at least five women and 5.15a (9a+) by nearly twenty women. More and more ladies are climbing the world's hardest routes (of “men”). In the world of competitions, women aren't just competing; they're dominating. Take Janja Garnbret, for instance – she's considered as “the greatest competitive climber of all time”.

Rewriting the rules

Rewriting the rules

From local events to international championships, female climbers are rewriting the rules, smashing records, and inspiring a whole new generation of climbers. With climbing, it's all about inclusivity and equality. Men and women are scaling those walls together, cheering each other on, and creating a vibe that's all about support and collaboration. We might soon see women tackling those so-called "men's comp routes" too!


At EP Climbing, we are proud of our female employees, their dedication in a challenging environment. They are breaking barriers in tasks once dominated by men—from shaping holds and painting metals to loading trucks and shipping. They handle everything from production to marketing, engineering, sales, maintenance, and finance. With enthusiasm, they proclaim, "We love what we do at EP. We are proud of it".

We have worked with Shauna Coxsey, the most successful competitor climber in the UK, to create and shape a full range of climbing holds:

Shauna Coxsey's holds range

"I am so excited to share the latest set of holds from my range with EP Climbing. The vision for the latest set is that a route setter could create an entire circuit with these holds alongside the previous range, which is why I was really busy creating lots of new shapes to add to the collection!"

EP Interview Shauna holds range

Despite the challenges, our female employees bring creativity, skill, and passion to every aspect of our work. Though not yet perfect, we are committed to progress. With 3 women and 6 men in our management team and 38% of all women in Europe and 33% in the USA, we are striving to create a welcoming culture where everyone can thrive. We are moving towards greater equality each day.

The empowerment of women in climbing is a movement. Women are leading the way towards a brighter and more inclusive future for climbing—one where everyone can climb. We are with them to bring climbing to everyone!

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