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Our goal is to provide clinic instruction to routesetters throughout the US and in as many regions as possible. In order to do this we need great host facility partners. If you are interested in hosting a USA Climbing Routesetting Clinic please see below or email routesetting@usaclimbing.org


A Level 1 Clinic is ideal for regular hosts of USA Climbing local or higher level competitions.  In order to host a Level 1 Clinic, a host facility must have significant roped and bouldering terrain, sufficient for hosting bouldering and sport local climbing competitions.  It is most common for a Level 1 Clinic to have 15 – 20 participants and the best host facilities will typically be larger climbing gyms, those that regularly host USA Climbing competitions at various levels, and those generally interested in training their own routesetting staff and/or welcoming routesetters from outside the facility.

There is no host fee for a Level 1 Clinic.  The host facility provides the climbing terrain and additional space for dedicated use during the typical 9am – 5pm schedule of the two day clinic and must be willing and able to accommodate up to 20 total routesetters.  Basic requirements we look for in terms of facility hosts include:

  • Depending on the number of participants, up to 20 individual route lines each a minimum of 24’ tall (ideal is 30’ – 40’) and with variety of top-rope and lead terrain.The exact number and location of route lines is determined in negotiation with the Chief Instructor during the clinic set-up and preparation process.
  • The route terrain should generally be determined planning for approximately 40% of the terrain as “beginner” (shorter walls 24’ – 32’ and slab or near vertical), 60% “intermediate” terrain (24’ – 40’ and between vertical and 15 – 30 degrees overhanging in sections) and 20% “advanced” terrain (24’ – 40’ averaging over 30 degrees overhanging, ie. lead-only terrain).
  • Approximately 120 linear feet of bouldering terrain with space needed for up to 20 routesetters to work simultaneously.We review the terrain to be planned for a Level 2 Clinic well in advance with the host facility representative and will be flexible where possible to accommodate for the needs of the gym’s regular operation, in consideration of the needs for an effective clinic experience.
  • Bouldering terrain should be diverse, ranging from slab and vertical to more overhanging terrain, and including aretes, dihedrals, if possible, and with a similar distribution as described above with respect to the relative difficulty and steepness of the terrain.

All routesetters, whether from the host facility, the immediate area, or traveling to the clinic from outside the region, must register directly through USA Climbing for a $200.00 participant fee, and all routesetters must also purchase a $70.00 Routesetter membership if they do not already have a current membership. 

As our goal is to offer opportunities wherever there is interest in our Level 1 Clinic, while also specifically trying to schedule clinics in as many regions as possible, we strive to schedule clinics throughout each year in diverse areas of the country.

Benefits to Host Facility:

  • Host facility routesetters can participate in a Level 1 Clinic in their own gym without any cost of travel.  Successful participants will receive a Level 1 Certification.
  • The facility’s routesetters will benefit from the work of the other clinic participants who have diverse backgrounds and represent many gyms from around the country.
  • For new climbing facilities, hosting a Level 1 Clinic can be an excellent opportunity to create a positive learning environment for intermediate experience level routesetters at their new gym, to create pre-opening buzz among the community and provide ownership and management a chance to see the work of routesetters within the structured environment of a clinic.
  • Depending on the number of participants, there will typically be 15 - 20 routes and between 20 - 30 boulder problems set during the Level 1 Clinic.  Many host facilities will schedule clinics specifically in the context of their regular rotation, use the clinic as a way to refresh the start of a new round of routesetting, or use the routes and/or boulder problems from the clinic for youth competitive training.


Clinic Duration:  2 days
Host Fee:  NONE
Total Participants:  20 maximum
Participant Costs: $200.00 Participant Fee and mandatory $70 USAC Routesetter Membership.


Level 2 Clinics are only held 2 – 3 times per year at host facilities determined by USAC, based on their location, facility details and past experience hosting USAC Championship competitions or other clinics. We only schedule Level 2 Clinics at host facilities that have hosted, or are capable of hosting Championship Level (Regional/Divisional/National) competitions, in both disciplines, and ideally, these facilities also will have hosted one or more Level 1 Clinics.  Level 2 Clinics are ideal for host facilities that regularly hold Regional and Divisional events and that are interested in training one or two of their own routesetters, and providing a training ground for other routesetters also seriously interested in becoming better trained and qualified for Championship Level USAC events. 

As with the Level 1 Clinic, there is no host fee but the facility must provide the adequate terrain needed for the clinic and then can select one or two of their own routesetters to participate in the clinic.  This is determined after review with the RCCP Administrator during clinic scheduling.  The individual routesetter(s) are selected by the host facility directly and do not have to apply but must register for the clinic itself ($400.00) as all other setters, and each must also have or purchase the $70 USAC Routesetter Membership.  All other routesetters apply for the clinic directly through USAC and will be selected by the Chief Instructor, Assistant Instructor(s) and in consultation with the RCCP Administrator.  In any given year, typically two Level 2 Clinics will be held, in different regions, and host facilities will be chosen based on a combination of factors we look for including:

  • To host a Level 2 Clinic, a host facility must have significant roped and bouldering terrain sufficient for hosting bouldering and sport Championship level competitions (Regional/Divisional/National), and have experience hosting USAC Championship level events and/or clinics.
  • The basic terrain details outlined above in the Level 1 section also apply to Level 2 Clinics; in addition we need access to a group or party room space adequate for presentations, and use of a projector if possible. We review the quality of the overall facility terrain and gym amenities on a case by case basis.
  • An active youth climbing team at the host facility that we may coordinate with.
  • The location of host facilities is reviewed, considering not only our goal of hosting Level 2 Clinics in different regions regularly, but also hosting in cities that are easy to travel to, ideally have low cost for reasonable accommodation, and accessible transportation and food options.

Benefits to Host Facility:

  • Host facility may select at least one but no more than two local routesetters to participate in the Level 2 clinic.  This routesetter must already have Level 1 Certification and meet the minimum standards for participation.  Successful participants will receive a Level 2 Certification.
  • Exercises designed to focus routesetters’ skill development on setting for youth, setting on-sight specific for bouldering and sport climbing, and working efficiently and effectively individually and as part of a team.
  • Instruction and review of organizational aspects of USAC Championship level events, including rules, competition planning, etc.
  • High instructor to participant ratio (1:6) results in more hands-on time for routesetters and specific feedback following the clinic experience for each routesetter.
  • There will be 12 routes and between 24 - 36 boulder problems set during the Level 2 Clinic. 


Clinic Duration:  3 days
Host Fee:  NONE
Total Participants:  12 maximum including 1 – 2 facility host routesetters (all routesetters must apply for participation)
Participant Costs:  $400.00 Participant Fee and mandatory $70 USAC Routesetter Membership


Host Requirements:

As outlined above, host facilities must have adequate additional resources, sufficient to accommodate the clinic type and expected number of clinic participants.  A host facility representative, such as the climbing gym owner, manager, or chief routesetter will be expected to communicate initially with the USAC RCCP Administrator and after clinic registration is set-up, then directly with the USAC Chief Instructor, to ensure adequate preparations are made for the clinic.

How to Schedule:

USAC Routesetting Clinics are scheduled through the Routesetting Clinic and Certification Program Administrator, Mike Bockino.  Level 1 Clinics can generally be scheduled at any time convenient for the host facility and based on the Chief Instructor’s availability.  We will work with a host’s ideal schedule planning, in consideration of whether we determine sufficient interest in the region and based on the timing of the clinic, and the overall schedule of all other Level 1 Clinics.  We try to schedule all clinics a minimum of 3 months in advance in order to provide time for USAC to announce and advertise, and for individual participants to register, or in the case of Level 2 Clinics, for individual participants to apply and their applications to be reviewed.  

Level 2 Clinics are only scheduled at host facilities that are Championship level competition hosts, and after significant review and planning in the context of the overall yearly schedule of clinics.   Generally, the RCCP will offer two Level 2 Clinics per year, in different regions.  Contact Mike at routesetting@usaclimbing.org for more information or to schedule a clinic.


USAC Chief Instructors are all Level 5 Certified Routesetters with decades of combined experience and Assistant Instructors have worked at numerous national events and are also typically Chief Routesetters in commercial facilities.  

Current Instructors and Assistant Instructors include:

Chief Instructors

  • Chris Danielson (USAC Level 5 Routesetter; IFSC Routesetter)
  • John Muse (USAC Level 5 Routesetter; RSC Chairperson)
  • Luke Bertelsen  (USAC Level 5 Routesetter, RSC Member)
  • Ian McIntosh (USAC Level 5 Rouetsetter, RSC Member)
  • Molly Beard (USAC Level 5 Routesetter)
  • Mike Helt (USAC Level 5 Routesetter)

Assistant Instructors

  • Dave Wetmore (USAC Level 5 Routesetter)
  • Nic Oklobzija (USAC Level 5 Routesetter)
  • John Oungst (USAC Level 4 Routesetter)
  • Mike Bockino (USAC Level 4 Routesetter)
  • Jeremy Hardin (USAC Level 4 Routesetter)
  • Josh Haynes (USAC Level 4 Routesetter)
  • Garrett Gregor (USAC Level 4 Routesetter)


Founding Partner: