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Snow experts agree new climbing award with Abertay help

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The snow doesn’t stop everyone! New training guidelines have been agreed for all the UK’s mountaineering councils, following consultation with an experienced climber and Sport Psychology Lecturer at the University of Abertay Dundee.

Dr Ross Lorimer provided professional advice to the Mountaineering Council of Scotland which has helped lead to the successful agreement of a new training framework with the British Mountaineering Council. From this, new courses will be developed across the UK and will form part of a new coaching pathway in Scotland.

The benefit will be the creation of a shared set of qualifications, which the experts hope will help improve the quality and consistency of training across Britain, leading to improved professional knowledge and safety throughout the climbing community.

Dr Lorimer, Lecturer in Sport Psychology in Abertay’s School of Social and Health Sciences, said: “It has been a pleasure to be invited to provide advice to the Mountaineering Council of Scotland and in turn the other national climbing councils of the UK.  

“Working at Abertay, there’s a strong focus on applying our research to the real world. Working directly with the climbing community has allowed me to apply this academic knowledge to a very serious issue, and hopefully will help improve the knowledge and quality of coaching in UK climbing.”

Kevin Howett, Development Officer at the Mountaineering Council of Scotland, added: “We are developing a coaching pathway in Scotland with the support and advice of Sportscotland.  The first step in this is a FUNdamentals of Climbing course, a syllabus for which we have been developing with their help.  

“At the meeting of the National Source Group lead by Mountain Leader Training UK we were pleased to gain agreement across Britain and Ireland to amalgamate our respective syllabuses, refining successful workshops already delivered by the British Mountaineering Council in England to produce a UK standard course.  

“We hope to start delivering the new course in Scotland in the new year, and use it to start the training and endorsement of an expanded number of Scottish climbing coaches, who will then help in developing and delivering the follow-on level courses of Learning to Train and Elite Training.”

The formal agreement between the councils allows for a shared coaching syllabus to be developed across the UK, sharing best practice and allowing all the experts to contribute to consistent guidelines on professionalism, safety and climbing skills training.


For media enquiries, please contact Chris Wilson (Communications Officer) – T: 01382 308935 M: 07837 250284 E:

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