Journal of Human Sport and Exercise

Design and validation of an observational instrument to assess the technical execution in top-rope climbing

Elena Hernández Hernández, Pablo Caballero Blanco, Alejandro Gómez Rodríguez, Jesus Morenas Martín



The aim of this study was to design and validate an observational instrument to assess the technical execution in top-rope climbing. This observational instrument allows researchers to assess the progression of climbers in relation to the achievement of key aspects of climbing movements. Firstly, a review of the specialized literature was performed to establish a set of criteria for observation. Secondly, content validation was carried out through the agreement and consensus method among ten expert judges at the qualitative level (degree of understanding, appropriateness of wording, relevance of questions, etc.), and quantitative level (global assessment on a scale from 0 to 10). Thirdly, this instrument was applied to a sample of seven climbers on an indoor climbing wall. Reliability was calculated through the application of the test-retest method. The results indicated that the instrument has optimal levels of reliability and validity for evaluating the technical execution of beginning climbers. The instrument can be considered as a useful tool which could be applied by instructors and teachers for discriminating the learning stage in beginning climbers.


Sport climbing; Beginning climbers; Observational analysis; Key aspects; Evaluation


Anguera, M. T. Observational Methods (General).In R. Fernández-Ballesteros (Ed.), Encyclopedia of Psychological Assessment. Vol. 2. London: Sage. 2003.

Baumgartner, T. A. Estimating the stability reliability of a store. Meas Phys Educ Exerc Sci. 2000; 4(3), 175-178.

BERGUA, P. Entrenamiento para escalada. La técnica. Revista Digital Barrabés. 2009. Available from: tecnica.html.

Bourne, R., Halaki, M., Vanwanseele, B., Clarke, J. Measuring lifting forces in rock climbing: Effect of hold size and fingertip structure. J Appl Biomech. 2011; 27, 40-46.

Billat, V., Palleja, P., Charlaix, T., Rizzardo, P., Janel, N. Energy specificity of rock climbing and aerobic capacity in competitive sport rock climbers. J Sport Med Phys Fit, 1995; 35(1), 20–24.

Bulger, S. M., Housner, L. D. Modified Delphi investigation of exercise science in physical education teacher education. J Teach Phys Educ. 2007; 26(1), 57-80.

Carretero-Dios, H., Pérez, C. Normas para el desarrollo y revisión de estudios instrumentales: consideraciones sobre la selección de test en la investigación psicológica. Int J Clin Health Psychology. 2007; 7(3), 863-882.

Cuadrado, G., De Benito, A.M., Flor, G., Izquierdo, J.M., Sedano, S. REDONDO, J.C. Estudio de la eficacia de dos programas de entrenamiento de la fuerza en el rendimiento de la escalada deportiva. Mot Eur J Hum Mov. 2007; 19, 61-76.

De Benito, A.M., García-Tormo, J.V., Izquierdo, J.M., Sedano, S., Redondo, J.C., Cuadrado, G. Análisis de movimientos en escalada deportiva: propuesta metodológica basada en la metodología observacional. Mot Eur J Hum Mov. 2011; 27, 21-42.

De Benito, A.M., García-Tormo, J.V., Izquierdo, J.M., Sedano, S., Redondo, J.C. & Cuadrado, G. Análisis cualitativo de las implicaciones musculares de la escalada deportiva de alto nivel en competición. Int J Sport Sci. 2013; IX (32), 154-180.

De Benito, A.M., Sedano, S., Redondo, J.C., Cuadrado, G. Análisis y cuantificación de las acciones técnicas de la escalada deportiva de alto nivel de competición. Mot Eur J Hum Mov. 2012; 28, 15-33.

Draper, N., Jones, G. A., Fryer, S., Hodgson, C. I., Blackwell, G. Physiological and psychological responses to lead and top rope climbing for intermediate rock climbers. Eur J Sport Sci. 2010; 10(1), 13–20.

Dunn, J. G., Bouffard, M., Rogers, W. T. Assessing item content-relevance in sport psychology scale-construction research: Issues and recommendations. Meas Phys Educ Exerc Sci. 1999; 3(1), 15-36.

Fontaine, E. & Deconink, O. Les fondamentaux de l'escalade: De l'initiation au perfectionnement. París: Anphora. 2005.

Fuss, F.K., Niegl, G. Finger load distribution in different types of climbing Grips. Sports Technology. 2012; 5 (3–4): 151–155.

Grant, S., Shields, C., Fitzpatrick, V., Ming Loh, W., Whitaker, A., Watt, I., Kay, J. Climbing specific finger endurance: A comparative study of intermediate rock climbers, rowers and aerobically trained individuals. J Sports Sci. 2003; 21, 621–630.

HERNÁNDEZ-HERNÁNDEZ, E., PALAO, J. M. Diseño y validación de instrumento para evaluar los contenidos conceptuales sobre voleibol en Educación Secundaria Obligatoria. Apunts. Educación física y deportes. 2012; 111(1), 38-52.

HERNÁNDEZ-HERNÁNDEZ, E., PALAO, J. M. Diseño y validación de un conjunto de instrumentos de observación para valorar la ejecución de los gestos técnicos en la iniciación al voleibol. TRANCES: Revista de transmisión del conocimiento educativo y de la salud. 2013; 4(2), 125-146.

Janot, J., Mermier, C., Parker, D.L., Robergs, R.A. Supplement The relationship between muscular strength and endurance and rock climbing performance. Med Sci Sports Exerc. 1999; 3 (1), 1-6.

Jones, M.V., Mace, R.D., Bray, S.R., Macrae, A.W. STOCKBRIDGE, C. The impact of motivational imagery on the emotional state and self-efficacy levels of novice climbers. J Sport Behav. 2002; 25(1), 57-72.

Knudson, D., Morrison, C. Qualitative analysis of human movement. Champaing Human Kinetics. 2002.

Lopez-Rivera, E., GONZÁLEZ-BADILLO, J.J. The effects of two maximum grip strength training methods using the same effort duration and different edge depth on grip endurance in elite climbers. Sports Technology. 2012; 5 (3-4), 100-110.

Lourens, T. Manual completo de escalada. Barcelona: De Vecchi. 2005.

LOWENTHAL, K. M. An introduction to psychological test and scales (2.ª Ed.). Philadelphia: Psychology Press. 2001.

Mace, R.D., Carrol, D. The control of anxiety in sport: stress inoculation training prior to abseiling. Int J Sport Psychol. 1985; 16, 165-175.

Macleod, D., Sutherland, D.L., Buntin, A., Whitaker, A., Aitchison, I., Bradley, J., Grant, S. Physiological determinants of climbing-specific finger endurance and sport rock climbing performance. J Sports Sci. 2007; 25(12), 1433–1443.

Moreno, A., Moreno, M. P., García-González, L., Gil, A., Del Villar, F. Desarrollo y validación de un cuestionario para la evaluación del conocimiento declarativo en voleibol. Motricidad. Mot Eur J Hum Mov. 2010; 25, 183-195.

Nevil, A. M., Lane, A. M., Kilgour, L. J., Bowes, N., Whyte, G. P. Stability of psychometric questionnaires. J Sports Sci. 2001; 19 (4), 273-278.

Nieuwenhuys, A., Pijpers, J.R., Oudejans, R.R., Bakker, F. C. The influence of anxiety on visual attention in climbing. J Sport Exerc Psychol. 2008; 30, 171-185.

ORTEGA, E., CALDERÓN, A. PALAO, J. M., PUIGCERVER, C. Diseño y validación de un cuestionario para evaluar la actitud percibida del profesor en clase y de un cuestionario para evaluar los contenidos actitudinales de los alumnos durante las clases de educación física en secundaria. Retos. Nuevas tendencias en educación física, deporte y recreación. 2008. 14, 22-29.

Ortega, E., Giménez, J. M., Palao, J. M., Sainz De Baranda, M. P. Diseño y validación de un cuestionario para valorar las preferencias y satisfacciones en jóvenes jugadores de baloncesto. Cuadernos de Psicología del Deporte. 2008. 8(2), 39-58.

Padilla, J. L., Gómez, J., Hidalgo, M. D., Muñiz, J. Esquema conceptual y procedimientos para analizar la validez de las consecuencias del uso de los test. Psicothema. 2007; 19(19), 173-178.

Pijpers, J.R., Oudejans, R.R.D., Holsheimer, F., Bakker, F.C. Anxiety-performance relationships in climbing: a process-oriented approach. Psychology Sport Exerc. 2003; 4, 283–304.

Quaine, F., Martin, L. A biomechanical study of equilibrium in sport rock climbing. Gait and Posture. 1999; 10, 233-239.

Russell, S D., ZIRKER, C. A., BLEMKER, S.S. Computer models offer new insights into the mechanics of rock climbing. Sports Technology. 2012; 5(3–4): 120–131.

Sanchez, X., Boschker, M. S. J., Llewellyn, D. J. Pre-performance psychological states and performance in an elite climbing competition. Scand J Med Sci Spor. 2010; 20(2), 356-363.

Schweizer, A. Biomechanical properties of the crimp grip position in rock climbers. J Biomech. 2001; 34, 217–223.

Schweizer, A., Hudek, R. Kinetics of crimp and slope grip in rock climbing. J Appl Biomech. 2011; 27(2), 116–215.

Schweizer, A., Schneider, A., Goehner, K. Dynamic eccentric-concentric strength training of the finger flexors to improve rock climbing performance. Isokinetic Exerc Sci. 2007; 1, 131–136.

Subramanian, P. R., Silverman, S. Validation of scores from an instrument assessing student attitude toward physical education. Meas Phys Educ Exerc Sci. 2000; 4(1), 29-43.

TESTEVUIDE, S. L'escaladae en situation. París: Revues Education phisique et Sportive. 2003.

Thomas, J. R., Nelson, J. K. Métodos de investigación en actividad física. Barcelona: Paidotribo. 2007.

Winter, S. Escalada deportiva con niños y adolescentes: Ejercicios y entrenamiento para el ocio, el deporte escolar y la práctica deportiva en las asociaciones. Madrid: Desnivel. 2000.

Wiersma, L. D. Conceptualization and development of the Sources of enjoyment in youth sport questionnaire. Meas Phys Educ Exerc Sci. 2001; 5(3), 153-177.

Wright, P.M., Craig, M. W., Tool for Assessing Responsibility-Based Education (TARE): Instrument Development, Content Validity, and Inter-Rater Reliability. Meas Phys Educ Exerc Sci. 2011; 15, 204-219.


Copyright (c) 2014 Journal of Human Sport and Exercise

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.