Of lemons, swans and turkeys

lemonsThe following article is from IOL Horizons back in 2009.

Belay if you will… Or, How to spot Lemons and be a Swan rather than a Turkey in climbing related activities…

I suspect some of you will have seen it, if you haven’t or,  if you have never come across The Lemon Theory related to managing risk in adventurous activities I urge you to read it.

Also see this Peer Belaying Technical Note from AALA , this outlines the pros and cons of different belay methods. A little drier but another essential read for anyone working with climbing groups.

NICAS for St.Martin’s Primary Pupils


A select group of P5’s from St.Martin’s Primary School have just completed an 8 week climbing course at the Tranent Wall right next to their school. National Indoor Climbing Award Scheme – more information in the video below

climbing opportunities put on by EnjoyLeisure 

We look forward to welcoming another group of successful learners from St. Martin’s for another eight week course beginning in the New Year.

The Physics of Climbing

It was a pleasure to welcome Ross High – Higher Physics class – to Foresters Park Climbing Wall in Tranent for the two hours of their science period on Tuesday morning.

They walked to the wall straight from school and split into four groups – looking at Forces and Equations of Motion in a Climbing Wall.

The pupils were required to design experiements that would enable them to:

  1. Using the equations of motion devise an experiment to work out the height of the climbing wall
  2. Using the setup on the wall investigate the relationship between the force and the direction of anchor.
  3. When a climber takes a fall, good belaying and friction are the things that prevent that fall from being serious. One way of increasing the force of friction is to cross the rope over Carry out an experiment to investigate the relationship between the number of twists and the force experienced by the belayer.
  4. When belaying keeping the correct distance from the wall can make a big difference to how easy it is to hold a climbers fall. In this activity investigate the effect on the belayer of moving further back from the wall.

The pupils were all thoroughly engaged and gave fantastic feedback to their science teacher – Mr. Laud. Along with the school we are looking to make this lesson an annual one in the higher physics curriculum.


Many thanks to Mr. Laud for his development of the session and the higher physics class for their enthusiasm. If there is any other school out there that would like to develop lessons similar to this then please get in touch with your Outdoor Learning Service

Higher Learning – CATI

CATI : Indoor Climbing  Friday 30th November 2012 -1330-1700

Part of a programme of free courses open to all council staff. Primarily targeted at council staff who work with young people. These mini adventures will give confidence and ideas to encourage young people into ever more activity and potentially integrate these activities into a learning programme and support the Curriculum for Excellence outcomes & capacities.

Courses facilitated by a member of the Outdoor Learning Service. Come along and see how Indoor climbing can support  learning.

To book  a place call Keith Christie at Outdoor Learning  0131 653 5217 k.christie@eastlothian.gov.uk

Course will be based at the Tranent Climbing Wall

Knox S1 climb to new NICAS levels

Congratulations to the S1 pupils from Knox Academy who achieved their Foundation Climber Level 1 NICAS Award. (National Indoor Climbing Achievement Awards).

To achieve their awards the pupils attended 4 climbing sessions at Tranent, Alien Rock and Ratho. They received coaching on the foundations of climbing and all worked hard to complete their level 1 award.

If your school is interested in Indoor Climbing and pupils acheiving  NICAS awards get in touch with the outdoor learning service and your nominated outdoor learning teacher  

Congratulations guys – great skill, teamwork and  hard work!