Critical Equipment Needed for Bouldering

Critical Equipment needed for bouldering

While performing bouldering, you must use the required equipment to protect yourself from falling. Along with some standard equipment, you also require some extra equipment to keep yourself safe. 

In addition, you must also have the knowledge of proper bouldering techniques for the safe completion of routes. While it's a challenging and technical sport, it has many health advantages. 

Bouldering helps you develop arm and upper body strength that you need to pull. It also improves grip and boosts leg muscles and foot strength. Additionally, it improves the body's cardiovascular fitness. 

We have compiled a list of critical equipment needed for bouldering. Scroll down to have a look. 

Equipment Required for Bouldering 

#1 Climbing Shoes

For bouldering, climbing shoes are necessary because they protect your feet from injury. They offer enough friction so you can safely stay on the rock. You can choose the right bouldering shoes depending on your climbing type and where you want to climb. 

Below are three popular bouldering shoe types you can consider purchasing for this activity. Try to stick to the right size to get the ultimate comfort and grip. 

#1 Scarpa Men's Vapor Shoes for Bouldering 

Scarpa Men's Vapor Shoes for Bouldering

It's a versatile form of shoe, built with a slightly asymmetric profile. The shoe helps you perform in steep terrain with comfort and sensitivity. It has a microsuede upper with a reduced tongue for keeping the shoe supple and a suede foot base that conforms to the shape of your foot. It is available in three colors and different sizes, so you can choose your best match.

This comfortable shoe lets you stand even on the thinnest edges with comfort. With these shoes, you can handle everything from technical bouldering to vertical headwalls. It uses a reverse slingshot design for connecting your heel to the toe. It results in less foot discomfort and better performance. 

#2 Bronax Men's Tennis Athletic Sneakers

Bronax Men's Tennis Athletic Sneakers

Next on this list is the Bronax Men's Tennis Athletic Sneakers with a rubber sole. The lively color of this sneaker looks exceptional. It also has graffiti fashion, which makes it look full of personality. 

The slip design of the shoes offers a secure fit, convenient padding, and a collar for added comfort. There's also a durable rubber outsole that offers a premium cushioning experience. The stable comfort fit of the shoes keeps you always ready for the next session. 

It's an extremely versatile pair of shoes that you can wear for kicking around. The shoe is available in multiple colors and different sizes. 

#3 Whitin Men's Cross Minimalist Shoe

Whitin Men's Cross Minimalist Shoe

The next bouldering shoe we have recommended in this post is the Whitin Men's Cross Minimalist Shoe. The shoe has a rubber sole with an anatomical shape, providing natural comfort. 

It has adaptive materials with minimalist construction. This vegan-friendly footwear does not use any animal product. The shoe has zero drops from heel to toe for a natural stride. 

The shoe is ideal for all foot types so everyone can get the right support. So, you can choose from different colors and sizes. 

#2 Crash Pad

The next essential piece of equipment on this list is the Crash Pad, designed to protect the athlete from injury. It adds a foam layer between the climber and the ground so one can safely do bouldering with less fall impact. 

You can find different crash pads in the market, which can be used on all sorts of terrain. Each crash pad has a unique construction, which makes them better. Below are three crash pads that you can consider purchasing. 

#1 Metolius Session II Crash Pad
Metolius Session II Crash Pad

The Metolius crash pad is redesigned with a flap closure system, which makes the pad easier to load. You can reverse it to cover up the shoulder straps while bouldering. It also has three new drag handles to position the pad when unfolded easily. 

The tough exterior of the crash pad makes it ideal for outdoor usage. It also has a carpeted logo, which gives a place to wipe your shoes clean. You can use padded shoulder straps and a waist belt to carry this crash pad easily. 

It feels firm and has a potential hard landing. The crash pad is well-constructed and worth the price. 

#2 Thick Bi-Folding Gymnastics
Thick Bi-Folding Gymnastics

Another crash pad on this list is the Thick Bi-Folding Gymnastics which comes with 4 inches of thickness for gymnastic and tumbling practice. It comes with joint protection and heavy-duty sponge foam padding with mesh sides to offer cushioned and supportive surfaces. 

It's a versatile crash pad with safe cushioning for gymnastic vault, balance beam training, floor tumbling, and more. You can easily carry it by folding it in half and using the attached two hooks.  

#3 Ocun Dominator FTS Boulder Crash Pad
Ocun Dominator FTS Boulder Crash Pad

This crash pad has a unique design with an FTS absorption block, which ensures proper absorption at the edges. It is a two-in-one system with a dual opening crash pad for the long and short sides of the pad. 

It also comes with unique carrying options for carrying it on the back through shoulders, straps, and waist belts. There are two aluminum hook buckles with touch exterior fabric to withstand regular outdoor use. 

#3 Chalk Bag

Climbers, gymnasts, and weightlifters use white stuff called climbing chalk to increase their grip and improve their performance. Slippery hands do not allow you to perform nicely due to moisture. But good-quality climbing chalk can nicely absorb the moisture. 

But where will you store chalk? Thus, you must invest in a durable chalk bag to perform better. Depending on your requirement, you can choose a smaller, medium, or large chalk bag. 

Below are three of the best options that we have found. 

#1 Sukoa Chalk Bag for Bouldering
Sukoa Chalk Bag for Bouldering

It's an easy-to-use bag, ideal for gymnastics, weightlifting, and rock climbing. It comes with a quick clip belt so you can quickly clip it onto a harness or carabiners. The bag comes with 2-pockets where you can store large valuables. 

There is a large main compartment for chalk buckets. So you don't have to spend more time maneuvering through the tiny chalk bag pockets. You can also use the adjustable draw cords to close the bag and prevent chalk spills. 

The bag is made of water-resistant material, so the chalk inside can be kept safely. It comes in four colors, i.e., green, blue, Sukoa orange, and Sukoa pink. 

#2 Noborou Chalk Bag with Removable Belt
Noborou Chalk Bag with Removable Belt

This Noborou chalk bag for rock climbing is wider than other bags. It has a large main compartment for easy access to chalk. The bag's inner lining has soft fleece, which helps keep chalk contained. 

There is a removable waist strap, which you can use to clip around your waist quickly. You can also use a carabiner with the provided loops. If unsatisfied with the bag, you can contact the company for a replacement refund. 

#3 Survivor Chalk Bag
Survivor Chalk Bag

Our last recommendation for the best chalk bag is the Survivor chalk bag that comes with everything you need to climb. With this chalk bag, you don't have to worry about your valuable belongings. 

The drawstring keeps the bag tightly secured, so the chalk does not fall out. You can take this chalk bag to the gym, powerlifting, or weightlifting. If you are an avid climber, you must purchase this chalk bag for storing chalk. 

Climbing Accessories

Here's a list of climbing accessories that you must keep while bouldering. 

#1 Climbing Tape

After a few hours of climbing, your skin can become raw and worn down. While it's not a serious injury, it can surely take a few days to heal. You might also have to dismiss a few of your climbing sessions. 

But you can eliminate this problem by applying a layer or two of climbing tape. It offers better protection and structural support during the climbing session. Here are three of the best climbing tape options. 

#1 White Finger Tape for Rock Climbing
White Finger Tape for Rock Climbing

If you want the ultimate protection for your hand, you must purchase this climbing tape. It is made with pro-grade materials specifically for the hands to offer better skin protection. 

A BJJ Black Belt inspires this tape with a slender width. You can use it to wrap your fingers and hands while performing sports. For committed daily training, White Finger Tape is a must. What's better? Well, you can apply and remove it without any fuss. 

#2 Hampton Adams No Residue Best Tape
Hampton Adams No Residue Best Tape

Next on this list is the Hampton Admas no residue best tape made of 1005 cotton. The tape leaves no glue or residue on the skin as it is made with a special formula. It's an ideal choice for weightlifters and rock climbers. 

While it's a strong tape, it does not require you to use tape cutters. You can easily wrap, pinch, and tear to enjoy your workout without delay. The tape is insanely sticky and perfect for different sports activities. 

#3 Rigid Strapping Tape for Blister Prevention
Rigid Strapping Tape for Blister Prevention

Another product on this list is the Rigid Strapping that comes from the house of Hampton Adams. Players of all the major sports use this tape to keep their skin protected. 

It's like duct tape, which is water and sweat-resistant. With this tape on your side, you will never get blisters again. Regardless of the outdoor activity you are performing; you must get this tape. 

#2 Grip Strength Trainers

If you want to get better at bouldering or rock climbing, you need to have grip strength trainers. On the surface, grip strengthening seems like an ideal choice for climbers. It helps you strengthen your weak forearms for different outdoor activities. 

Considering getting the best grip strength trainers? Here are three options. 

#1 FLYEF Grip Strength Trainer
FLYEF Grip Strength Trainer

This smart counting grip strength trainer is equipped with the best counting function, which does not require a battery. The counter will record your exerciser number without fail. 

It is made of the latest upgraded material and has a longer handle so you can use it properly. The longer handle also eliminates the issue of handle breaks during exercise. The super portable grip allows you to work from anywhere. It is made for both men and women. 

#2 LoGest Metal Hand Grip Set
LoGest Metal Hand Grip Set

Another grip strength trainer in this list is the LoGest metal handle grip set, which is crafted using alloy steel. While the aluminum handles are strong, they feel lightweight. You can easily carry this grip set anywhere for a great workout session. 

This grip set targets your forearms, arm strengthener, wrist, and fingers. It comes in three different sets to meet everyone's needs. This grip set also makes a beautiful gift for anyone interested in gymming. 

#3 SAVLDO Hand Grip Strengthener
SAVLDO Hand Grip Strengthener

The last grip strengthener on this list is the SAVLDO grip strengthener. It comes with five adjustable renaissance levels to meet different training sessions. Compared to other options, this one is noiseless and does not squeak. 

It's a perfect tool for fitness athletes, climbers, and weightlifters. So, if you are interested in improving your hand strength, you must get this device as it comes with the convenience to use anywhere. 

#3 Training Board

One of the critical pieces of equipment for bouldering is a training board. The relatively steep angle of climbing forces the power endurance. Below is the list of the three best training boards for bouldering.   

#1 Escape Climbing Beta Handboard
Escape Climbing Beta Handboard

It's a high-quality climbing beta handboard designed with dual texture for optimal usage. The handboard also offers a range of angles and widths to promote strength and target specific muscles. 

The Escape climbing beta handboard can be used by either beginners or professionals. This 6" x 26" x 2" handboard helps you train harder without pain. 

#2 Two Stones Portable Fingerboard
Two Stones Portable Fingerboard

This climbing board is made from complete natural rail wood. It is strong and does not have any scabs. It is light and portable, which makes it ideal for outdoor usage. The training board allows long-term hanging with no pain. 

It strengthens the grip of the finger and feels soft on the skin. This portable fingerboard is designed for both beginners and professional climbers. It includes bent arms, standard, one-arm pull-up, front leveler, and more. 

#3 Metolius Simulator 3D
Metolius Simulator 3D

The last training board on this list is the Metolius simulator 3D, which comes in two different colors. The holds of this training board are arranged along with the broad arc for better ergonomics. 

You can use this training board for reduced injuries. It includes comprehensive instructions, a training guide, and all mounting hardware. 

#4 Climbing Helmet

Many climbers do not use a climbing helmet, which makes them more likely to get injured. Without a good-quality helmet, you must never try bouldering, rock climbing, or other activities.

Below are three of the best climbing helmets:

#1 Tontron Adult Hiking Climbing Helmet
Tontron Adult Hiking Climbing Helmet

You can use the Tontron adult hiking climbing helmet, which is made of a high-impact ABS shell. It also has a high-density EPS liner and meets the climbing helmet certification. It has an adjustable back-of-head enclosure system with a sideways vent hole. 

#2 Fusion Climb Meka Helmet
Fusion Climb Meka Helmet

The Fusion Climb Meka Helmet is another recommendation, which has 10 ventilation areas to protect you from overheating. The two available slots are for mounting hearing protectors. It is extremely lightweight and durable. 

#3 Jackson Safety Climbing Helmet
Jackson Safety Climbing Helmet

The last climbing helmet mentioned is the Jackson Safety Climbing Helmet. It's an industrial hard hat, available in different colors. This modern style lightweight helmet is comfortable and has a convenient chin strap for better stability and security. 

Equipment Required for Indoor Bouldering 

Before you start cragging outside, you must practice inside to improve your climbing skills. But what equipment do you require for indoor bouldering? 

For indoor climbing, you need a chalk bag, rock shoes, belay device, lycra or loose clothing, harness, and rope. For children, it's advised to use a full body harness and a helmet. 

Things to do When Learning Bouldering

When you are learning bouldering, don't forget to do these three things. 

Start With Bouldering in a Gym 

Bouldering can be considered as a type of climbing that does not use ropes. So, before you start real bouldering, you must practice at the gym to perform better. Starting bouldering at a gym helps you understand this activity better, making you an expert. 

Start Building Full Body Strength

As climbing is not easy, you are advised to build full body strength. Maintaining upper body strength is not easy, but you must learn to do it. A good climb requires a lot of pushing and balance. 

Take Outdoor Climbing Course

Before you perform real bouldering, you can consider taking an outdoor bouldering course. It will help you improve your performance and decrease the chances of getting injured. 


Is bouldering harder than rock climbing? 

Bouldering is not harder than rock climbing, but bouldering can be a bit difficult for beginners who have a fear of heights. Beginners who lack upper-body and finger strength often find bouldering difficult.

Can Bouldering Help You Get in Shape?

Regularly performing bouldering and similar activities can help you get in shape and build an athletic body. 

Is climbing chalk different from regular chalk?

Yes, there is a difference because climbing chalk is made from magnesium carbonate. If you use regular chalk for grip, it will run right off as your hand starts sweating. 


Whether you are bouldering inside or outside, it always comes with a risk of injury. That's why you need to purchase the best quality equipment to protect yourself from falling.

The critical equipment ensures that you don't heavily injure yourself during sports. Hence, you can perform bouldering with more confidence and less risk.

Kevin Macey
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