Rock Climbing

Experienced Rock climber & captain of the national team Mr Jay Koh of Kinetics Climbing will be happy to answer your questions. Jay Koh took up Sport Climbing in Junior College and has been climbing actively since. He strongly believes that climbing is a constant journey of self discovery that provides limitless opportunities to challenge oneself. As an accomplished competitive climber, Jay has been a member of the National Team since year 2002, representing Singapore in various international competitions. Achieving a Silver medal at the recent SEA Games at Palembang, Indonesia will rank as one of his outstanding achievements. Excelling on natural rock as well, he is constantly exploring new places and has been to some of the most remarkable climbing areas in South Africa, France, Spain, USA, Australia, China, Thailand and Malaysia. He is also the only Singaporean to have climbed sport routes of up to the difficulty grade of 8C and onsights of up to 8a. Even though he considers himself to be more of a sport climber, he excels on boulders as well and has bouldered up to the grade of  8B / V13. Jay is also a sponsored The North Face SG athlete. Apart from competitive climbing,Jay has been coaching and instructing students and individuals since 2005 and has worked with people from a wide range of age groups including teenagers and middle-aged working adults. He has produced students who excelled in competitions and derives satisfaction in his work when they translate their passion onto natural rock.. Jay is also the current National Champion for Lead Climbing in Singapore as well as the Captain of the National Team. Simply drop your question in the question box below and he will try to get back to you at his soonest.

I notice that you look pretty thin. This worries me as I am well built; I used to do bodybuilding. Do I have to lose weight and become thin before I can take up climbing?

No you don't need to be thin. I know Olympic rowers who picked up climbing in their late 30s after retiring from their sport. And trust me, they are huge!

Sport climbing is for everyone of all shapes and sizes! Remember to focus on the technical aspect of the climbing rather than the physical aspect. This is because climbing movements are a set of specialized skills which requires long term practicing to fine tune one's movement.

Your physical shape and ability will develop naturally through constant practice.

I am 40 years old. is it too old to start climbing and get good at it? Plus must I have a skinny physique like you to climb well?

No one is too old to start learning how to climb! Many people think that you need to be young and physically fit to pick up climbing. But the truth is climbing is suitable for all ages. 

As a beginner, it is much more important to focus on the technical component of the sport rather than the physical. One good example is how to be able to engage your legs efficiently to reduce the workload on your arms. With continuous practice, your body will gradually build itself up physically.

There are in fact people in their 60s who climb harder and more regularly than me.

I wish I had a slender body like you! Will climbing help me to be slim or must I go on a special diet as well?

I have managed to managed my body shape not just through sports, but also by ensuring i have a well balanced diet including not binging and over-eating. Remember, when input is more than output, we put on weight!


Climbing is becoming extremely popular in recent years because more and more people are starting to realise that one can get fit through climbing as a sport. Combined that with a proper nutritional intake, you will be on your way to a healthy lifestyle. One point though, do get your cardio-vascular workout once in a while that focuses primarily on the bigger muscle groups in your lower limbs!

How do I go about learning to climb? What is the technical component of the sport - it is about learning how to use the ropes and equipment?

For someone who wants to pick up climbing and learn the ropes, signing up for the SNCS level 1 certification is probably the best way to begin.

During the 7hr; 1day course, one will learn the equipment used, how to belay safely etc. For more details, you can refer to

Can't find an answer?

Drop us your question and Mr Jay would be happy to answer it