Office of Student Life

Recreational Sports

Climbing Center COVID-19 Safety Protocols and Reservation Process

Climbing Center 

Upon re-opening, top rope climbing and bouldering will utilize a reservation process.

The slacklining, campus board, Qajaasaarneq rope, pull-up rings and ROTC rope have been removed to allow for proper physical distancing in the space. 


Reservation Process 

  • Reservation time slots will be 45 minutes in length and will begin each day at the opening time of the OAC and end no later than 45 minutes prior to the closing of the OAC. 
  • Reservations will be staggered to allow for proper distancing at entrances and exits, and to allow staff to disinfect touchpoints and equipment.  
  • Walk-ins, or those who don’t have a reservation upon arrival, will be asked to complete a reservation for the current time. If no slots are available immediately, patrons will be asked to visit the ARC or leave the building until a slot is available due to insufficient waiting areas.  
  • A 30-minute disinfection period will be scheduled following the last group of each day. 


Making a Reservation 

  • Top rope and bouldering reservations will be made through our RESERVATION LINK. Please use your Ohio State email address when completing your reservation. You may elect for an email or text reminder of the reservation in the booking process. 
  • Members may reserve up to two time slots per day (depending on availability) and can reserve a time for bouldering and top rope (which counts as the two per day). Additional restrictions may be implemented based on access.  
  • Reservations can be made seven days in advance. As courtesy to others users, reservations should be canceled or updated 2 hours before the reservation time. 
  • Not showing up for and not canceling a reservation more than three times in a 20 day period may result in a temporary loss of climbing privileges. Patrons who cannot come to a pre-scheduled reservation should cancel the reservation in the reservations system. As long as the reservation is canceled before the start time, there is no penalty. 


General Information and Expectations 

  • Patrons should complete appropriate daily health screening before visiting the facility and have completed the Safe and Healthy Buckeyes training and Pledge. Do not visit the facility if feeling ill, regardless of symptoms.  
  • Patrons are asked not to enter the building more than 5 minutes before their reservation time begins as there is little to no room for waiting. 
  • Once inside, masks are required unless drinking.  
  • Climbing partners, even individuals from a shared living space, must maintain appropriate physical distancing while using the facility at all times.
  • Patrons will have access to cubby spaces but will be asked to wipe down the cubby before and after each use. Every other cubby will be closed to encourage proper distancing. 
  • A perimeter, one-directional walkway will encircle the climbing area. Patrons are asked to follow directional arrows on the floor and enter and exit the floor as indicated. 
  • Climbers should wash hands or use hand-sanitizer before beginning a new route. Additional hand-sanitizer stations will be available in the climbing area. 
  • Chalk is allowed and should be kept in a chalk sock inside a chalk bag (no loose chalk). 
  • Climbing Center Waivers and Belay Certifications are active for one year. Renewal of waiver or belay certification will be requested at check-in if they have expired. 



Belay Clinics will resume with the start of classes and a video to cover the classroom portion of the program. The backside of the bouldering wall and area behind the slackline will be used for the in-person instructional area. Capacity for each clinic will be reduced to 4 participants to increase physical distancing. 

Please visit RecRegister for reservations.


Outdoor Equipment/Gear Rentals

Our rental program is currently on hold.


Additional Safety Measures

  • New procedures and addendums to existing OAC rules will be posted in the facility. 
  • Personal climbing equipment is allowed but should not be shared between users. 
  • Belay devices, shoes, lead-ropes and helmets will be available for check-out as usual and will be wiped/disinfected between users. Patrons should not share belay devices or equipment. Harnesses are available but will be used once per day to allow for cleaning between users and to allow for adequate dry time. Ropes will be washed daily.  
  • Climbing Instructors will have an extra carabiner to “tie–in” climbers by using a Figure–8 on a Bight. This allows for physical distancing if climber cannot tie themselves in.
  • Belay stations will be designated by markings on the floor.
  • Patrons may not climb in street shoes.  
  • Supplies may be limited depending upon demand. 
  • Only high value items will be sent to lost and found. 
  • In the event of unexpected facility closure, appropriate maintenance protocols will be followed. Individuals with a reservation affected by a facility closure will be contacted.