Belay Certification Tests


Rules and Conditions for Belay testing

All climbers requesting to belay in the Vertical Rock facility must have prior climbing experience and successfully pass the VR belay safety test. In order to belay in the VR facility, you must be 13 years or older or receive approval from VR management. The belay certification test, must be requested at the front desk immediately upon arriving at the VR facility and completed before belaying or participating in any activity.

If a request has not been made at the front desk immediately upon arrival or before participating in any activity at the facility, the participant will need to come back to test in no less than 24 hours.  Taking the test after you have started climbing in the facility is not allowed.

The Belay Certification Test requires a climber to successfully demonstrate the following procedures:

  1. 1. Put on a harness and properly tie into the harness using a Figure Eight Retrace knot with a backup.
  2. 2. Demonstrate the rope “on belay”.
  3. 3. Perform pre-climbing safety checks and commands.
  4. 4. Effectively belay while the brake hand is maintained on the rope at all times.
    5. Catch simulated falls and demonstrate the proper lowering technique.


If you need to learn these procedures, they are safely taught in our introduction to climbing class, “Learning the Ropes” Course.

Lead Climbing

Anyone wishing to lead climb and lead belay in our facility must follow the same check-in procedures. Lead climbers must take a lead test as well as a top rope test. Ask front desk to get an approved instructor to conduct a lead test. Lead climbers must be 15 or older in order to belay or have management approval.

Lead belay testing must be done with an ATC/tube-style device.

(Gri- Gri’s are allowed to be used after successful completion of test)

All Lead tests are tested on 5.9 or greater routes.

If you need to learn these procedures, they are safely taught in our introduction to climbing class, “Learn to Sport Lead” Course.

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