Freestyle climbing, otherwise known as free soloing, has become one of the most popular climbing sports over the last few years, but do you know what it really involves? Although health and safety regulations dictate that climbers use harnesses, straps, ropes and correct equipment during their climbs; freestyling goes beyond that and allows a climber the freedom to climb without equipment.

So how can you ensure that you’re freestyle climbing safely? Well although equipment is cast aside for the sport, there are still a few protocols to follow to maximize your safety. You’ll always want to wear a helmet.

Solo climbing can be an exhilirating experience, but you should only ever undertake it if supervized by a professional. As free solo’ers won’t be using ropes or safety equipment, a fall can often lead to serious injury or death; so only ever practice the sport when properly trained.

Once you’re on the rocks, you’ll have to rely on your hands to grip, your feet to provide stability, and your senses to keep you safe. Many solo climbers do so with the aid of climbing gloves just to reinforce their grip, and others use heavy duty boots to assist with friction.

Always practice freestyle climbing properly and prioritize your safety.