Crash Pads for Climbing and Bouldering
Crash pads are used with the style of climbing called bouldering. Many climbers prefer bouldering for many reasons. Crash pads are like gymnastics mats but used outdoors for while bouldering. Crash pads help prevent injuries when falling and are important to use for any type of bouldering.
Sections of a crash pad
A crash pad has layered foam on the inside covered with a durable nylon outer cover. Many crash pads have straps to let you clip your shoes and chalk while hiking in, and pockets to put your keys and wallet. You will carry the crash pad to the crag, so it's important to get one that folds in half and has handles or straps for carrying on your back. Many companies offer removable pockets. Some crash pads come with launch pads for sitting starts.
The upper layer is usually about 4 cm thick and is usually a more dense type of foam. The dense upper layer distributes the impact across the pad. The lower layer of foam is softer. It molds to the shape of the rocks below it. Thicker padding and the number and density of the layers within the crash pad correspond to increased protection.
Crash pads protect you while bouldering and give you a sense of security and help you push the limits of your ability. Be sure you climb with a buddy who can act as a spotter while you climb. Although you're relatively close to the ground, the risk of injury is still present.