Rock Climbing Harness Sizing Life Hacks

Today we're going to talk about how to put on and check the perfect fit of a climbing harness. Knowing the sizing of climbing harness is always an advantage on your climbing.

Because, a comfortable climbing harness allows you enjoy your climbing without losing the concentration and ensure the best safety as well.

​Here I'm going to talk about, how you can identify the perfect harness, the common sizing of harness and the best ways of wearing a climbing harness.


Best Rock Climbing Harness Sizing Life Hacks

So, the first thing that you wanna do, when you take your harness out of the bag is just make sure that there are no twists in the harness before you put it on.

On this harness, you see that you have the waist belt, which goes around your waist, and then the leg loops, which obviously, go around your legs.

Our Recommend Harness

What you have to look for is that there are no twists in any of the elastic or any of the front part of the harness. The easiest way to do this is just to hold it in front of you, so that the belay loop is facing away from you.

And, make sure there are no twists in the elastic on the back of the leg loops. This will help on perfect rock climbing harness sizing.

Before you step into the harness make sure all the buckles are loosened up.

It just makes it easier to put it on. On this harness there's only one double back buckle, but sometimes they'll have up to four.

So, two on the waist belt, and then, two on the leg loops as well. There are two main ways that people will put on harnesses. One is just to set it on the ground and then step into it and pull it up.

The other is just to put it on like pants, which is what I generally do. You just step into it the same way that you would the legs on your pants.

One and two leg loops. We want the waist belt on the harness to be over your hip bones. This is just so that, in case you were to flip upside down, you're not gonna' fall out of the harness.

Using the leg loops and waist belt, you can easily control the sizing of your harness. If you have the leg loops up and the waist belt on the harness up over my hip bones. 

You can tighten it down easily, just grab the strap that comes from one side of the padding and then pulling it in the opposite direction. And then, adjust the leg loops. 

​Rock Climbing Harness Fitting & Sizing Tips

petzl selena harness

So, now that I have the harness on, we're gonna' talk about fit. The most important thing for fit of a harness is ensuring that the waist belt fits you.

A good way to check this is by grabbing on to the gear loops and pulling down, making sure it doesn't go over your hip bones.

Or, you can take a flat hand and insert it under the waist belt of the harness, make a fist, and make sure you can't pull it out.

Ideally, when you have the right harness, the padding on the harness will be touching or slightly overlapping. If it's totally maxed out, you don't get a ton of adjustability, and it's probably a good idea to try a larger harness.

If the harness is so loose that you have a significant amount of webbing showing with no padding, it can uncomfortable as that webbing can cut into you while you're climbing.

So again, once it's tightened down and it's the right size, that padding will ideally be touching or overlapping like I have it here. Rock climbing harness sizing is always important.

Once the waist belt is on, we can go ahead and check the fit on the leg loops. These leg loops are slide adjusters, but some leg loops will have a buckle, just like I have up here on my harness.

Check the Harness Features

Some leg loops will be just be fixed leg loops, meaning that there's no adjustment to them, but this one, again, has the slide buckles. I can slide these to tighten it, and slide them back to loosen it up.

As long as the leg loops fit, they don't need to be super tight. They should be snug, but not uncomfortable. I like to climb with my leg loops a little bit looser, but, again, that's just up to personal preference.

As far as sizes of harnesses go, you can get a general idea of what size you need by checking different brands, and looking at their size charts, measuring your body, and, then, choosing the size that corresponds.

Petzl Harness Sizing & Basics

All harnesses are going to fit differently, so it's a good idea to be prepared to try on multiple different harnesses. Now that I have Petzl Harness here, we want to go ahead and do our safety checks.

So, I mentioned this buckle up here before. Ensuring that the webbing is doubled back. What that means is that we wanna' make sure that the webbing runs through both of these metal loops and comes back in on it itself.

The straps are made with metal that you can check from the side. If you forget to go through the bottom piece of metal on the buckle of the harness can come undone when you weight it or you sit in it.

Now that we have this closed, we're just going to take a look at it, ensure that we have that piece of webbing showing here, and tell ourselves it's closed.

This harness only has one buckle that's double back, but some will have up to four or more. Two on the leg loops, and, sometimes, two on the waist belt of the harness.

Climbing Harness Fitting Instructions

You'll need to check few common things before you start climbing, and also have your partner check their harness before they start climbing.

You can do this just by taking a look at it, ensuring that you have that webbing showing, and tapping it and saying "closed". These are both closed, because they're adjustable at the buckle with the slide, and I'm ready to climb.

Like backpacks, most climbing harnesses are going to feel comfortable until you climb in them. So, it's a good idea to hang in it for a little while until you purchase it to make sure that it fits you right.

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Click Here to Leave a Comment Below 2 comments
Rub - February 17, 2020

Great content! Super high-quality! Keep it up! 🙂

Bobby - February 21, 2020

Do you have any guideline on climbing harness materials?


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