routes set for you
Our routes are set for all ability levels, proportions, and style preferences. Whether one is looking to have fun with friends, climbing for exercise, training for outdoor climbing, or preparing for competition—we’ve got routes that are just right for you.
get the app
KAYA connects the people behind each climb. Discover new sets, get personalized climb recommendations, and log all your climbs – indoors and out – all in KAYA. Download now to build the stoke together.
Meet the crew
Routesetters are a unique mix of an industrial athlete, craftsman, artisan, choreographer, and product designer. They are well-versed in a variety of climbing and movement styles. They constantly evolve the craft as the needs of our community change and welcome your feedback.
Head Routesetter – Rockville
Who is on my Setting Team?
Each of our regions has a setting team of 4 to 16 setters. Above you can see our head setter and we’re working on getting the rest of the team to feature here. If you see your head setter please say “hi” and introduce yourself.
How do I know what is being set next?
We post our route setting schedule every two weeks. The goal with the setting schedule is to communicate where our team will be setting so you know which zones will be closed and where to look for your new climbs.
What days can I expect the setting team to be working?
Typically, our team sets weekdays 9am-4pm.
How long does it take to set a climb?
Each setter will build between 3-6 boulders in 4 hours then group into smaller forerunning teams for about 2-3 hours and calibrate the climbs to ensure all challenges are grade-appropriate and adjust for quality & accessibility for a spectrum of climber types.
How does the setting team grade climbs?
The day will begin with our Head Setter mapping out the intended grades for each of the climbs for the day. Once the first draft is complete which we call a ‘Skeleton’ we will have the primary setter forerun the climb and adjust any movements and swap out holds to get us closer to the intended grade. Our primary goal is to ensure the climbing movement meets our quality criteria then ensure we are hitting our mark with the grade. We will have at least one other setter forerun and make adjustments to the climb. The setting team will have a conversation about the grade and place our consensus in KAYA.
Why are there sometimes no grades on the climbs?
If the grade is above 5.9 or V2, we might not place a grade on the climbs. The reason is to not distract climbers by what you conceive about a specific grade. Our hope is you will preview the climb and determine if it’s a good fit and attempt the climb on its terms. We are also looking for your input on the grade and quality of the climb. You can share your thoughts on the KAYA app which the setting team checks regularly.
Why does this set of new climbs feel easier/harder compared to the last set?
It could feel easier because the holds are clean with fresh texture. It could feel harder because you have not gained the muscle memory just yet. Each climb is unique and could be presenting a unique challenge that might fit your skillset or be out of your routine climbing movement. Either way, we appreciate your input and hope that you share on KAYA so our setting team can better understand what you desire so we can make every climb a uniquely positive experience.
Where do I report a spinning hold?
If you find a hold that moves or seems loose, let the front desk know and they will get the info to the setting team to fix it.
How do I get into routesetting?
We have a company opportunity page where we post all new employment opportunities. As a department we are looking for passionate climbers who are curious about exploring movement and designing appropriate challenges for our gym users. Keep an eye out for a community event called ‘Setting with the Setters’ where our setting team provides a guided experience of what our team does to create new climbs.
What is the minimum climbing ability for a routesetter?
We have found that climbing at least V4 or 5.11+ is essential to meet the demands of forerunning each work day and basic understanding of movement. If you are not there yet and have interest please share your interest to your local head setter. They might be able to guide you to become a contender for our apprenticeship program.
Does our gym have an apprenticeship program?
We have training for newly hired seasoned setters but our apprentice program is designed to take a new setter who has limited or no experience and mentor them through a 3+ month program. We encourage motivated individuals to apply because we have a system to train you to become a great setter.