Schedule

ASCEND climbing classes operate on a first come first serve basis, so be sure to register by booking online using the calendar below (or by downloading the RGPro Connect app), calling in, or stopping by the front desk. Remember: you can always just drop in and climb any time ASCEND is open without a reservation or signing up for a class! Not interested in taking a class? Don't worry, you can use the climbing and fitness areas anytime ASCEND is open without a reservation or signing up for a class, but only if you were taught how to share.

Interested in more that just climbing programming? View the ALL ASCEND Events and Classes Calendar.

Classes

ASCEND offers a wide range of climbing classes to help you achieve your goals through proven tactics. These technique and skill focused classes are designed to take your climbing to the next level and teach and reinforce proper systems for improving your safety knowledge.

Boulder Basics (Beginners)

Brand new to bouldering? Still need some pointers? Go beyond our walkthrough with a guided bouldering session. Spend an hour with a climbing coach and get started on the right track.

  • Duration: Thursdays from 6p-7p, Saturdays from 10a-11p, or through a special reservation.
  • Price: $15 per participant
  • Notes:
    • There is maximum of 5 people per class. First come, first served.
    • Facility admission and rental fees are additional, should those things apply to you.
    • Participants must be 14 years or older (exceptions will be considered).

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Boulder Beta Workshops (Intermediate)

ASCEND climbing coaches are excited to host climbing workshops primarily focused on singular topics or pushing through specific plateaus.

  • Duration: TBA
  • Price: TBA
  • Notes:
    • TBA

COMING SOON

 

Introduction to Top-Roping (Belay Class)

Want to learn how to top-rope belay? This introductory course will teach you how to tie your knots and how to belay so that you and your friends and family can enjoy roped climbing together.

  • Duration: Tuesdays and Fridays from 6p-7p or through a special reservation.
  • Price: $15 per participant
  • Notes:
    • There is maximum of 4 people per class. First come, first served.
    • Facility admission and rental fees are additional, should those things apply to you.
    • Participants must be 14 years or older.

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Climbing 101 (Beginners)

A 4-week session designed to introduce a brand-new climber to the indoor adaptation of the sport. An instructor will cover climbing technique, lingo, bouldering, top-roping, belaying, training for climbing, and more! While anyone is welcome to join, this broad, introductory course was developed with beginner climbers in mind to give them the confidence needed to have fun, be safe, and make friends in the gym. Participants must be 14 years or older. Interested in Youth Climbing 101? Click HERE.

  • Duration: Sessions start on the first Wednesday of each month, 6p-8p (attending all classes is strongly recommended).
  • Price: $150 guests | $100 members
  • Included:
    • Four, 2-hour sessions of small group instruction.
    • Membership for the calendar month the sessions are held.
    • Rental gear for entire month.
    • 10% off in ASCEND retail shop.

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Sport Climbing 1: Indoor Sport Climbing (Intermediate)

Learn the basics of leading and lead belaying. Students will focus on lead belaying with an ATC, how to properly clip quickdraws, and how to take lead falls. Once completing this course, students will have the opportunity to take ASCEND's Lead Test, which serves as a prerequisite to take Sport Climbing 2: Gym to Crag. Note: Leading on ASCEND's top-rope wall is not allowed outside of this class.

  • Goals: To provide introductory information, hands on practice, lead climbing confidence, and to get students to pass ASCEND Lead Test.
  • Duration: Offered monthly on select Saturdays or Sundays
  • Cost: $50 members | $60 guests
  • Prerequisites:
    • ASCEND Green Belay Tag
    • Redpoint 10-
    • Comfortably climb 5.9
    • Participants must be 14 years or older.

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Sport Climbing 2: Gym to Crag (Intermediate)

In addition to reviewing all topics in Sport Climbing 1, students will be introduced to lead belaying with a GRIGRI, rappelling, cleaning, and common sport climbing anchors. Note: Leading on ASCEND's top-rope wall is not allowed outside of this class.

  • Goals: To prepare students for outdoor sport climbing.
  • Duration: Offered monthly on select Saturdays or Sundays
  • Cost: $50 members | $60 guests
  • Prerequisites:
    • ASCEND Lead Test card

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Outdoor Guiding

ASCEND is SO PSYCHED to introduce you all to climbing in the great outdoors. After all, that's where this whole climbing thing originated, so let us show you the ropes and our roots.

Outdoor Climbing 1: Intro to Outdoor Top-Roping (Beginner-Intermediate)

This trip is designed for participants new to climbing outside. Sure, you might be able to boulder V7, but roped climbing outside is quite different in terms of technique and safety. If you've never climbed outside or need a refresher, this entry-level outdoor climbing class will leave you feeling more comfortable and ready to take the next step.

  • Goals: Participants will learn how to rappel and how to climb outside using a top-rope system.
  • Duration: Offered on select Saturdays or Sundays from 9a - 3p
  • Cost: $135 members | $150 guests
  • Equipment: Harness, shoes, helmet required, but if you're without, we got you covered free of charge!
  • Prerequisites:
    • ASCEND Green Belay Tag
    • Comfortably climb 5.6
    • Participants must be 18 years or older or 14-17 if accompanied by a paying adult.

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Outdoor Climbing 2: Building Top-Rope Anchors (Intermediate)

Have you ever wanted to know how that rope you're tied into is secured at the top of the cliff? This trip is designed for participants with some experience climbing outside who will be introduced to anchor building and other self-sufficiency skills - the key to begin exploring the world through climbing.

  • Goals: Participants will learn how to rig top-ropes in common situations and will also be introduced to related rope-climbing techniques.
  • Duration: Offered on select Saturdays or Sundays from 9a - 3p
  • Cost: $160 members | $175 guests
  • Equipment: Harness, shoes, helmet required, but if you're without, we got you covered free of charge!
  • Prerequisites:
    • ASCEND Green Belay Tag
    • Outdoor Climbing 1 or speak to comparable experience
    • Comfortably climb 5.6
    • Participants must be 18 years or older (exceptions will be considered for minors).

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Private Guiding

Looking for something that's not listed above or prefer to roll with your own crew? Have little to no experience and just want to get outside for an all-inclusive day of climbing? Scout troop that needs climbing merit badges? We got you! Pricing will vary depending on your needs and how many people you have.

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Competitions

Climbing comps? Yep - they're a thing that we host, so keep your eye out for the next Steel Town Throw Down! Head on over to our EVENT BLOG to learn more about what's coming up and what's history.

Private Coaching

Personal Training at ASCEND includes everything from classic fitness training to climbing coaching, all designed for YOU in a 1-on-1 or small group setting. Whether you'd like to send V10, get in shape for epic hikes, or recover from/prevent injury, we got you. Meet with a trainer, discuss your goals, and be on your way to your next challenge. Pricing will vary depending on your needs and how many people you have. And don't forget that members receive one complimentary consult.

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Instructors
Todd McCormick

Todd was introduced to climbing through the Boy Scouts but started getting more serious about it when he started at the University of Pittsburgh in 2004. Since then he has gained experience with route setting, guiding, coaching, and outdoor retail. He is passionate about traveling and loves exploring new areas through climbing. He's traveled extensively throughout the country primarily for sport climbing and bouldering. He is also an avid ultra runner, and he loves talking about pretty much anything running/climbing related.

Matthew Tschippert

Matthew has been competing at climbing competitions for as long as he has been climbing. Starting in 2009, he was drawn to the sport after a long career in swimming. In addition to competing nationally, Matt has also traveled and climbed a number of hard boulder problems outside, including the classic Hueco Tanks problems "Power of Silence" and "Power of Landjager". Currently, he has an affinity for route setting & sharing his climbing vision through coaching. 

Brian Janaszek

Brian is a slightly above average climber who has been trying to get better for 20 years. If you've read about a climbing training program, he has probably tried it, starting with Dale Goddard's Performance Rock Climbing and running through Steve Bechtel's Climb Strong programs. He has always dreamed of training at the Sheffield School Room with Jerry Moffatt and Ben Moon. He believes that climbing is a high-skill sport (think tennis rather than weight lifting), and that climbers benefit from skill-specific training in addition to strength training.

Maria Rose

Maria Rose is relatively new to the climbing scene, having first started while living in northern Thailand. The majority of her time was spent sport climbing on the walls of the Crazy Horse crag outside of Chiang Mai, and deep water soloing in Krabi. (This has made her very spoiled to climbing in perpetual sunshine.) Maria is also a competitive runner, running track and cross country from middle school through college, setting pole vault records in college, and training with the Thai national track team. She is passionate about seeing female athletes and athletes of color receive more recognition in the climbing scene, and hopes to make the sport more accessible to Pittsburgh's communities through coaching and conversations that challenge stereotypes of who belongs outdoors.

Nate Williams

Nate brings 7 years of climbing experience and over 10 years of various coaching experience to the ASCEND coaching staff. He gained most of his climbing knowledge while living Nashville and climbing at his favorite spots such as Little Rock City and Stone Fort but he now calls Pittsburgh home. Nate really, really hates slopers.