Belaying: An Introduction

By Don Graydon.

Belaying is a bedrock technique of climbing safety, a system of using a rope to stop a fall if one should occur. Belaying works like magic, but, like any good magic trick, it takes a lot of practice to do well and requires a basic understanding of underlying principles.
In its simplest form, a belay consists of nothing more than a rope that runs from a climber to another person, the belayer, who is ready to stop a fall. Three things make the magic work: a skilled belayer, a stance or anchor to resist the pull of the fall, and a method of applying a stopping force to the rope. There are many ways to apply this force, a variety of stances, and many methods of setting up and tying into as anchor.

© 2001 GayOutdoors.org; All Rights Reserved.

GayOutdoors has a 25 year legacy of being the premier outdoor network for gay and gay friendly men in New England with a national reach. We are transforming lives, building a community and promoting visibility through outdoor recreation for gay and gay friendly men. We invite you to join us on our events, to post events for other members to join you and to share your adventure photos, stories and advice.