In August, CBJ reported that USA Climbing would be “going virtual” for its 2020-2021 competition season as a result of the ongoing pandemic. Specifically, USA Climbing’s forthcoming virtual season format will consist of events held over a two-week period, whereby competitors’ attempts and success on routes/boulders in a venue will be tracked with an app and compared to results from competitors in other venues.
Yesterday, USA Climbing announced more details about the virtual season. Specifically, the digital partner/app for this planned virtual season will be KAYA. According to a press release, KAYA, as a platform, allows climbers to log their climbs within a given gym and amass points on a leaderboard (that will be updated in real time). The leaderboard will be verified and processed by USA Climbing to deliver official results during the upcoming season. KAYA also allows climbers to save and submit “video evidence” of their sends.
“We are extremely excited to partner with KAYA to immediately deliver competition for our climbers this season while at the same time bringing innovation that will engage an even larger audience in the future,” said USA Climbing’s CEO, Marc Norman. “With the COVID-19 pandemic continuing to persist and our climbing gyms around the country in various stages of operation, we determined that we must come up with a new way to run our qualifying events this season or be susceptible to full cancellation as we experienced in the Sport and Speed season. Partnering with KAYA provided an opportunity for our members to qualify staying closer to home, minimizing exposure to large groups, creating a consistent competition with verification while also allowing for greater access for all members and ensuring minimal impact on climbing gyms. We are thrilled to partner with KAYA and excited to welcome athletes back to competition climbing.”
Kimberly Ang, KAYA’s Chief Strategy Officer, added, “In partnering with USA Climbing, we will be able to empower the next generation of climbers with the cutting edge of data and technology in the climbing world. This is as much about working with the very best of our sport as it is about inspiring the whole climbing community.”
Climbing gyms interested in hosting an event this year and thus being part of the virtual season are encouraged to send a message to firstname.lastname@example.org. Additional information for gyms about the KAYA scoring platform can be found here. Stay tuned to CBJ for more information as USA Climbing’s 2020-2021 virtual season gets underway.
Climbing Business Journal is an independent news outlet dedicated to covering the indoor climbing industry. Here you will find the latest coverage of climbing industry news, gym developments, industry best practices, risk management, climbing competitions, youth coaching and routesetting. Have an article idea? CBJ loves to hear from readers like you!