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Level l Instructor Training

Scout-Climbing-Merit-BadgeClimbing and rappelling challenges and captivates the imagination of all ages. The Level I Climbing Instructor course satisfies the training requirements of the BSA National Standards, Climb On Safely and the Guide to Safe Scouting, while preparing individuals to supervise and facilitate climbing and rappelling activities.

Who should attend?
Anyone sixteen (16) years of age or older who is interested in learning how to provide a safe rock climbing and rappelling program at unit, district, or council events. All are welcome. No climbing experience is necessary. This course is a prerequisite for the BSA Level II Climbing Instructor course.

Click here to see the COPE & Climbing Training Courses Flowchart to find the course that’s right for you.

The course goal is to provide you with the skills to safely and effectively assist in managing a climbing program for your unit, district or council.

1. Complete COPE & Climbing Foundation Level 1 Training Course. (17 hours)
2. Complete Climbing Level 1 Training Course. (9.5 hours)

What will I learn:
This course will cover basic equipment and proper fit, knots, climbing and belaying techniques, and how to effectively teach the climbing merit badge requirements.

Lesson Plan:
Foundation Level 1
• Getting Acquainted
climbing_cover• Leave No Trace
• Challenge By Choice & Setting Goals
• Age Appropriate Guidelines
• Warm-ups and Initiative Games
• Spotting
• Dealing with Fear
• Safety Measures & Accident Prevention
• Life Safety Systems
• Climbing and Rappelling (Tower/Wall)
• Equipment Control & Inventory
• Pre-use Inspections and Reporting
• Effective Teaching Using EDGE
Climbing Level 1
• Site Selection & Management
• Environmental Conditions
• Rock Climbing & Technique
• Anchoring
• Bouldering
• Teaching Climb On Safely
• Teaching Climbing Merit Badge

Proof of Completion:
Upon successful completion of this course, adults (18+) that satisfactorily demonstrate the necessary skills to the training staff will receive a “BSA Level I Climbing Instructor” card. This meets the required training for the “additional instructor” requirement at unit, district or council climbing and rappelling programs. A Level II Instructor must still be be present at all climbing events. Training remains current for one (1) year from the completion date. Participants sixteen (16+) years or age or older, or those that need more time to become proficient enough to meet the requirements will receive a “BSA Instructor in Training” card.

Training Dates:
See our Training Schedule for upcoming dates and registration information.

A helmet, climbing harness, carabiner, belay device, rescue or figure “8”, and gloves, are required for outdoor sessions. If you have your own equipment, please bring it to class. All personal equipment will be subject to inspection by the staff to ensure that it meets BSA standards. Equipment can be provided to those that do not have their own gear.

Course prerequisites:
• Must be sixteen (16) years of age or older.
• Bring a current copy of your Youth Protection Training that is appropriate for your BSA membership.
• Bring a current copy of your Climb On Safely completion.
• Bring a current copy of your Annual Health and Medical Record. (Parts A, B & C)

For questions, please contact Mark Johnson at