• Paraclimbing

    Paraclimbing provides access for athletes with disabilities to compete in top rope climbing at the National and International level.

    Paraclimbing Categories

    Categories included in Paraclimbing are open to those with physical disabilities:

    • Neurological / Physical Disability (RP1, RP2, RP3)
    • Visual Impairment (B1, B2, B3)
    • Upper Extremity Amputee (AU2, AU3)
    • Lower Extremity Amputee (AL2)
    • Seated (AL1)
    • Youth
    • Open

    USAC Paraclimbing Nationals will utilize the most current IFSC Paraclimbing classification rules. The IFSC Paraclimbing classification rules are hereby published as the USAC paraclimbing classification system, as set forth in Rule 1.4.4. The link for IFSC Paraclimbing classification rules is here.

    Paraclimbing National Championships will be a two round competition hosting a modified redpoint qualification round on day 1 and an onsight final round on day two.  The climbing will be executed on top rope.

    Invitations to the IFSC World Paraclimbing Championships, held every two years, will be given based on the results of that year’s Paraclimbing National Championships.

    If you have questions, please contact our Paraclimbing Series Manager, Madeleine Palmer, at madeleine@usaclimbing.org.

    Follow USA Climbing Paraclimbing on Facebook!

    In-person Classification at Nationals

    USA Climbing will be holding the 2024 Paraclimbing Nationals Championships on March 9-10 at Sportrock Climbing Center Rio in Gaithersburg, MD. In preparation for the event, we would like to provide athletes with information related to in-person classifications ahead of Nationals so you may begin planning and submitting any necessary documentation to USA Climbing.

    In order to compete in the classified categories, all competitors must be classified unless competing in a Visually Impaired category, Youth category, Open category, have a confirmed status or have a review date later than 2024.

    Must Classify at Nationals
    No IFSC Status
    IFSC Review date 2024 or earlier

    View Classification Status

    New IFSC Class (AU3)
    The IFSC has implemented a new class, AU3, for athletes with a hand or partial hand amputation. This may be present at birth or acquired. These athletes will no longer be placed directly in the RP3 category. For athletes that this affects, you will need to submit a new MDF, provide supporting documentation such as an x-ray or photo of the limb, and undergo re-classification at this competition. If you have questions about this, please reach out to classification@usaclimbing.org.

    At Classification, licensed health professionals trained as Classifiers will perform physical examinations to assess the competitor’s range of motion, strength, and function. They will then use that information to classify each athlete based on the most current IFSC Classification rules. For 2024 Paraclimbing National Championships, we will be using newly published Classification Rules 2024.

    When Nationals registration opens, you will select your classification date/time and select the sport class you have either competed in in the past or you think you fit in. During classification you will be placed in the correct sport class. These appointments are on a first-come, first-serve basis and competitors should consider these prior to making your travel plans.

    Document Submission
    The following competitors must submit a new Medical Diagnostic Form (MDF):
    • Competitors who must be classified- Physical Impaired MDF
    • Visually Impaired category competitors- Visual Impaired MDF

    While there will be no Visually Impaired classification, VI competitors must still submit their Medical Diagnostics Form so that USA Climbing has it on file prior to any US Team qualification and so that it may be submitted to the IFSC if they were to receive a World Cup competition start.

    Medical Diagnostic Forms must be completed and signed by a physician (Medical Doctor or Doctor of Osteopathy) after March 5, 2023. A physical therapist, occupational therapist, physician’s assistant, nurse practitioner or optometrist signature is not valid.

    Supporting documentation should explain the history and work-up for the underlying medical diagnosis associated with the impairment. Supporting documentation often does not need to be newly completed but can often consist of medical history, visit documentation, or testing that was used to make the original diagnosis.

    To submit your Medical Diagnostic Form and supporting documents, follow these steps:
    1. Log into your USA Climbing Member Portal
    2. View your Profile
    3. Click on the “Documents” tab on the left-hand side
    4. Click “Add Document”
    5. Select “Physical Medical Diagnostic Form” or “Visual Medical Diagnostic Form”
    6. Upload your Medical Diagnostic Form

    Please submit your documents by Monday, January 15, 2024. If you are unable to make this deadline, reach out to classification@usaclimbing.org as soon as possible. Medical Diagnostic Forms and supporting documentation submitted before this date will be reviewed for completeness and USA Climbing will follow up with competitors by the first week of February with the status of their documentation.

    Documentation submitted after January 15th will not be reviewed prior to the competition and incomplete documentation may result in the inability to complete the classification process.

    NB: Even though USA Climbing is a not considered a HIPPA covered entity, your medical documents will be kept secure and only reviewed by essential USA Climbing Staff and the Classifiers. Please email us at classification@usaclimbing.org for additional questions.

    Our site uses cookies to enhance your browsing experience. If you continue to use this site, you consent to our use of cookies.