As a first-timer at BKB, we want to make sure that you have the best experience possible. It’s no secret that climbing is inherently challenging, both mentally and physically. That’s one of the reasons why we love it, and why some basic instruction can help ensure your experience is on-point.
1. Choose Your Adventure
Learn The Ropes
LTR is best for those interested in roped climbing.
Under the supervision of our experienced instructors, you’ll receive hands-on practice as you learn fundamental rope techniques and movements needed to scale most of the taller, roped walls in our facility. In addition to learning climbing movements and risk management, you’ll be taught how to properly fit your harness, tie knots correctly, and use equipment to manage the rope for another climber (AKA “belaying”).
(Includes gear and a complimentary day pass to return for belay certification)
Intro To Climbing
ITC is best for those interested in bouldering (climbing without ropes).
Turn vertical dreaming into skillful doing. With a 1:6 maximum ratio, our small class setting will allow you to meet other new climbers while learning the essential foundations of bouldering techniques. You’ll get to the top of multiple climbs, improve your basic climbing knowledge, try-out our taller walls and learn how to navigate the facility in no time.
(Includes gear rental)
Class spaces are limited, so secure your spot early!
2. Sign Up For A Class At BKB Chicago
3. Prepare For Your Visit
All first time visitors are required to complete a Personal Responsibility Code before entering our facilities. Doing this before you arrive will save you 10 minutes and ensure that you arrive to your class on time.
4. Answer Those Lingering Questions
Guests climbing with children, experienced climbers or those visiting with experienced climbers can opt out of our classes. Those who don’t take classes are still required to take a 20-minute facility orientation. If you’re an experienced climber, you might be more interested in learning about our Level Up V2-V3 or Climb Like a Girl classes.
Nutrition is vital to ensuring you push your physical potential and avoid the dreaded mid-climb crash. Whether you’re a rock-solid vet or brand new to the sport, incorporating a balanced snack at least 30 minutes before you climb will leave you feeling ready to rock (okay…done with the puns.)
Climbing will awaken muscles you didn’t know you had. They may even cramp up! To help mitigate this, make sure to bring a water bottle (water fountains are available at each facility). We also recommend hydrating with drinks full of healthy vitamins and electrolytes to keep those small muscles in your fingers, hands and toes (heck, the whole body!) primed for the climb.
We kindly ask that you safely store any gear brought to BKB (i.e. off the floors, benches and bouldering pads). Cubbies and lockers* are located around each facility for your convenience.
*Locks are not provided. Please provide your own or purchase a lock at the front desk.
At BKB we praise the person who marches to the beat of their own drum. That’s why we want you to remember the acronym, D.R.U.M, when at any of our facilities. DRUM = Defend. Respect. Up. Mindful.
Defend the BKB Dynamic: We dare to be different and we’re proud of it. Please help us in spreading the #BKBLove.
Respect Yourself + Your Community: If you happen to be disrespectful to any staff and/or community members, we might ask you to leave. Respectfully, of course.
Look Up: Be aware of your surroundings, always. Climbing is an inherently dangerous sport.
Be Mindful of the Mission: We aim to foster a sense of belonging for all who walk through our doors, regardless of age, gender, creed and/or orientation, while inspiring you to engage your imagination, passion, and physical potential.
If you’re new to BKB, please let us know! We are happy to answer any questions and make your first visit as welcoming as possible. After all, we were all new climbers at one time. Our professional instructors and staff are here to guide you to your fullest potential as we strive to “become superhuman together”.
5. Arrive 15 Minutes Early To Your Class
Arriving late to class impacts the experience for our other guests. Please be aware that if you’re more than five minutes late, you will not be admitted to class. Fifteen extra minutes will also give you the time to check-in, gather your gear, meet your instructor, and get psyched.
We recommend wearing comfortable, flexible, breathable clothing and socks that you don’t mind getting dirty. Each facility also has clothing and gear available for purchase.
What to Wear on Your Feet
Climbing shoes, included with your class, must be worn while climbing on the walls. Shoes and climbing gear are also available for purchase in our retail area. Please do not wear your climbing shoes around the facility or into the bathrooms. Doing so could get what you step in onto our walls. That’s nasty. If you plan on taking a fitness class or using our fitness amenities, be sure to wear your sneakers.