USA Climbing has decided to cancel the Youth Sport and Speed Regional and Divisional Championships after consultation with the International Federation of Sport Climbing (IFSC), US Olympic and Paralympic Committee (USOPC), and medical professionals. With the ongoing and uneven nature of the COVID-19 pandemic across the country and to protect the health and well-being of our athletes, families, volunteers, and communities, it has become clear that this action is necessary. While we know this will undoubtedly be disappointing for many of our young climbers, we continue to consider hosting Sport and Speed events later this summer should the pandemic ease and local/regional governmental restrictions permit it. Unfortunately, cancellation remains a distinct possibility. We will make final determinations by June 1 regarding the Youth Sport and Speed National Championships and revised qualifying procedures, with that event, if held, to be held no earlier than the week of July 20. By June 1, we also intend to provide an update on other postponed events such as the Collegiate National Championships and Paraclimbing National Championships.
The IFSC has postponed the Paraclimbing World Cup which had been scheduled for July 2020, as well as all three Lead World Cups which had been scheduled for July 2020. The IFSC confirmed that it will make a final determination by June 1 with regard to the Youth World Championships scheduled to be held in Moscow, Russia from August 23-31. The IFSC is considering holding the event as planned, postponing it to a later date, or cancelling the event.
We are aware of the unique challenges that climbing competitions present and are working closely with our gym partners, RCs, and the USOPC on solutions to mitigate the risks of infection as much as possible when events do begin again. We are considering all options from adjustments in formats and isolation, to additional sanitization requirements, PPE, health checks, and more. The USOPC has created some valuable tools for use in planning the return to training and events, and those tools can be found HERE. Also, on April 22nd, USA Climbing’s Board of Directors approved the formation of a Medical Committee to help guide us on issues such as these, and a call for volunteers interested in serving on that Committee will be issued shortly.
Finally, thank you to those who have responded to the USA Climbing member survey. Your answers have provided significant guidance for us to consider when looking at the remainder of the season and future seasons. On behalf of USA Climbing, I wish everyone the best in these trying times and look forward to seeing you all again in the gyms or at the crag - hopefully, in the near future.
Chief Executive Officer