Planet Granite local comps popularity

Each year more and more people visit climbing gyms. We definitely witness it in our local gym PG Sunnyvale. But do more people attend local PG comps each year? We decided to check it and collected following data for last 4-5 years.

All data is for PG Sunnyvale MEN only.

Bloc Party bouldering comp:

Year Recreational Advanced Open Total
2011 138 96 18 252
2012 153 105 30 288
2013 136 125 46 307
2014 174 189 36 399
2015 200 164 24 388

Online Graphing

Frictions Series roped comp:

Year Recreational Advanced Open Total
2012 92 106 23 221
2013 63 98 30 191
2014 84 112 38 234
2015 53 95 75 223

Online Graphing


  • Bouldering comps see more participants than roped comps, twice more people attend Block Party than Friction Series.
      Possible reasons:

    1. A gym can accommodate more climbers doing bouldering than ropes. When lines get too long people stop liking the comp.
    2. Mostly young people compete and they like bouldering more than ropes; some people boulder only.
    3. Easy to attend bouldering comp – no need for a   partner to belay you.
  • Number of people attending Bloc Party slowly but steadily grows, when Friction Series attendance is virtually the same for last 4 years.
      Possible reasons:

    1. It is quite possible that PG Sunnyvale has reached its limit for how many people can compete in ropes on top-rope, so it does not grow.
    2. It is crowed at Bloc Party but still manageable, so it grows reflecting growing popularity of climbing.
  • Most of the Bloc Party grows comes from Recreational and Advanced groups, number of strong climbers competing in Open stays almost the same over last 5 years.
      Possible reasons:

    1. There is the cut off line where climber has to decide on how badly he wants to be really strong climber. Most of the climbers do not go over that line or can’t stay long enough there. Only truly dedicated compete in Open and their number does not change much.
  • On the other hand, for Friction Series, the number of people competing in Open shows small but steady grows.
      Possible reasons:

    1. You do not have to stay in line for routes in Open (because the routes are hard and lead), so gym capacity is not a problem.
    2. Number of really strong sport climbers is less than strong boulderers, so some people feel like they might have chance in ropes, especially young climbers (last couple years teenagers dominate in Friction Series).