Top 10 Ropes for Climbing Reviewed and Rated
There is no better measure of a person’s upper body strength and overall endurance than rope climbing. With the massive popularity of CrossFit and functional training, climbing has now come into the mainstream. If you haven’t added dynamic climbing ropes to your home gym set-up, now’s your chance. We’ve rated the 10 best climbing ropes on the current market to allow you to choose the best of the best.
In a hurry? The test winner after 18 hours
Made from Manila hemp
5 different lengths
No mounting bracket needed
Top 10 Picks
1. Manila Climbing Rope
Made from Manila hemp
5 different lengths
No mounting bracket needed
Will shrink about 10% in inclement weather
With this rope from the climbing ropes options, you get a product that will last a long time and give you a superior grip, as well as being easy to install.
This type of rope is the choice of the military because it is hard-wearing, dependable, can support high weights and is able to withstand friction.
Due to the thick capacity of the rope, it is not prone to damage from sharp rocks or other natural objects which can cut. Therefore, in a dry indoor gym environment, it is close to indestructible.Read more
Manila Climbing Rope as a part of the climbing ropes series is made from the toughest manila hemp rope, the same material that has made manila ropes the standard used in military bases and shipyards around the world.
The climbing ropes provide a superior grip and durability level. You don’t need a mounting bracket to fit the ropes, which can be used both indoors and outdoors.
The Rogue rope is available in 5 different lengths. Made in the USA, the manila rope has a braided eyelet and comes in a 1.5-inch diameter. The climbing ropes length range from 6 feet to 30 feet. The Rogue climbing ropes will provide you with an enduring tool that will give you the comfort and performance that you need to get a great climb workout.
2. Bomba Gear 15-25 ft Climbing Rope
16,000-pound breaking strength
Made from Grade A half-inch manila rope
Sturdy metal clamp
Manila helps prevent sweat
Some users report the rope has an odor
This Climbing Rope also made with manila, is durable enough to last many years if used inside.
This is a grade of rope which is highly dependable, the weight this can carry is sure to support any person and any heavy objects which require hoisting.
When looking for a heavy-duty rope that has very high durability, this product is up there as a tried and trusted option.
Most heavy-duty climbing rope products are the same because design change is very limited for this type of product, change the brand but generally get the same product and performance.Read more
The all-natural manila material will last about three years under weather conditions. The climbing ropes are made in the USA and boast a 16,000-pound breaking strength. Also, the manila helps prevent sweat from your hands building up on the climbing ropes as you climb. This will give you a better grip and prevent slips or falls.
These climbing ropes feature an easy to use, sturdy metal clamp for installation. The climbing ropes come in three lengths: 15 feet, 20 feet, and 25 feet. Weights range from 8 to 13 pounds. The solid construction and craftsmanship mean that the rope will last many years if kept inside and handled with proper care.
3. White Climbing Rope
Extra thick diameter
The thicker diameter of this poly dacron rope means you will build your forearm strength as you climb.
As with all heavy-duty ropes, the ability to grip and haul the body upwards is very good. The stretch factor is minimal from thick ropes and this rope will not easily fray or get damaged. The durability level of this is up there at the top, these types of heavy climbing ropes give many years of excellent reliable service.Read more
While the first two ropes we looked at were made of Manila, the Fitness Solutions white rope is made of polypropylene and Dacron plastic fibers braided together.
This makes the climbing ropes virtually sweat proof and also suits it better to outdoor use since manila can shrink or deteriorate under weather conditions. The polyester fibers used in this robe are naturally water repellent, which means they will eliminate sweat related problems, too.
Another neat feature is that makers will cut their climbing ropes into any custom length you desire. The loop at one end allows you to secure the rope to a post. All in all, this is an outstanding rope, one you will be enjoying for a long time to come, at an affordable price point.
4. Valor Fitness Sisal Climbing Rope
Very strong and durable
Sturdy end loop
Only comes in one length
The sisal construction of the Valor Fitness climbing ropes gives you excellent grip ability and a sweat-resistant surface that will help keep you safe.
Resistive with regards to absorbing moisture-sweat, the surface of this rope offers excellent reliable grip, the width of the rope offers a nice natural hand grip.
Durability is at a level for which this rope can be expected to be in use year after year without any wear and tear.Read more
The Valor Fitness Sisal Climbing Rope is 25 feet long, with a max weight of 300 pounds. It is 1.5 inches in diameter, making it easy to grab and hold onto. Sisal is a strong, durable material that has a comfortable texture. There is a loop at one end, and the rope knots very easily. This makes it easy to secure for installation. The rope is light, weighing only 13.2 pounds, so it will be easy to carry and hold in place while installing. It will not fray or splinter over time.
According to Valor, they tested the rope in “over 40 events throughout Florida” and found it nearly indestructible. Divots in the climbing ropes also aid with grip, and also aid in knotting. A heat-shrunk vinyl sheath, on the opposite end from the loop, also prevents fraying to ensure the Valor Fitness Sisal Rope will give many years of dependable service.
5. Aoneky Fitness Climbing Rope
30 foot long
1.5 inches wide
Easy to install
Green rubber sleeves may slide off
The Aoneky Fitness Climbing climbing ropes are another offering made of Manila, so it will resist fraying while giving you a secure grip surface.Read more
The rope is thirty feet long, 1.5 inches wide, and weighs in at twenty pounds. It is suitable for a climbing station, but the weight also means you can do throws, slams, jacks, waves and pulls with it. The climbing rope is attached to a post with a D ring and carabiner, unlike the eyelets or clamps, we saw on most of our other review ropes.
The thickness and the weave of this rope do vary a bit when compared to other heavy-duty manilla ropes, this is not a downside, the rope is designed for the purpose, offers great durability and ease for use.
One possible issue is that the green sleeves on either end of the rope may come loose. One user reported reaching the top of the rope and having the sleeve slide down, which caused rope burns. Overall, the Aoneky Fitness Climbing rope is a decent workout aid at an economical price.
There are also reports that the climbing ropes have a strong odor, like oil or fuel. Letting the rope sit outside for a day or two should counteract any odor.
6. White Polydac Climbing Rope
Secure yet soft grip
Ten sizes available
Comes in different lengths
Easy to install
Rope may be slippery at first for new users.
Crown Sports offers the White Polydac climbing rope, another lightweight, weather-resistant rope made from polyethylene and Dayton fibers.
When new this has a noticeable odor, this is easy to fix, let the rope "air" for a few days.
The grip on this rope is very good, the width and weaving offer a surface that gives a nice natural hand-hold. There is a good range of length options available, the maximum being 30-feet.Read more
The synthetic composition makes the Polydac strong and tears resistant, while also going easy on the hands. The grip was above average. The climbing ropes attached to a post or rafter with a heavy-duty eye hook. The eyehook means you have more options on where you can install your rope and it can work as an outdoor climbing rope too. The climbing ropes are available in ten sizes, from 3 to 30 feet.
Another special feature the White Polydac climbing ropes offer is that it arrives without knots in it. You have the option of keeping it smooth for a more challenging workout, or you can tie the knots to give yourself something to grab onto for a less strenuous workout. Knots are definitely a smart choice for beginners who do not have much climbing experience. In addition, the Dacron means you will not get rope burns or friction burns on your hands. At the same time, the softer material means you will get a more challenging workout, with or without the knots.
7. Ropefit Climbing Rope
Made in the USA
Heat shrink end caps
Made by hand, inspected for safety
Does not need anchor plate for installation
The climbing ropes may have an odor at first
The RopeFit Climbing Rope is trusted by the U.S. military and, amazingly, are made one at a time by hand.
The military is not the only institution that uses these pieces of rope art. Many commercial gyms and CrossFit boxes use the RopeFit manila climbing ropes, and they are also used in the Spartan races. They will be a fine, useful addition to your home gym, and they are easy to install, too.Read more
The rope is manila, with a breaking strength of 16,000 pounds.
A knotted loop on one end allows for easy knotting to an anchor point, with no anchor plate needed. The climbing ropes are 1.5 inches in diameter, available in custom lengths by request. Heat shrink end caps discourage fraying.
RopeFit puts a big emphasis on safety and can account for the making of each climbing ropes since they are handmade in house.
The price on the RopeFit is surprisingly known, and the company points out that its products are equal to anything else on the market but at a lower price.
8. Poly Dacron Rope
Graphite polymer blend
Comfortable climbing grip
Made in the USA
Good indoors or outdoors
May be slippery at first
The poly dacron climbing rope is the only one on our list to be made of a poly dacron blend.
Those climbing ropes choice gives you the option to try a rope that has different properties which the maker's claims will give a great level of durability and performance and stands up well to wear and tear.Read more
The construction is quite strong, and also provides a climbing grip that is secure, firm, and comfortable. The graphite and polymer also mean the rope will not fray or shed as organic climbing ropes may.
The rope installs with a steel clamp, meaning you need a carabiner or eyebolt. With those two pieces of hardware, you can install the rope almost anywhere and can even have a portable climbing system if you desire.
The gym climbing rope is made with a combination of strands for extra strength and durability and can be used both indoors and outdoors. The climbing ropes are available in lengths from 6 to 30 feet. Heat shrink wraps are military-grade and manufactured by 3M. This is a long-lasting climbing rope, suited to a variety of uses such as CrossFit rope climbs, at a price that will fit almost any budget.
9. Petzl Mambo
Thick outer sheath
A core is not dry treated
Thinner than the others on our list, this rope will help you meet your fitness goals while staying within even the tightest of budgets.
This rope does not present as a thick designed rope, it is thin but not too thin, this will hold weight, easy to use while offering a little more of a challenge for grip.Read more
A single best climbing rope designed for both indoor and outdoor climbing.
It has a thick outer sheath which provides a strong level of protection and prevents fraying or cracking. A special ultra-sonic finish has the sheath and core bonded together on their ends, providing further protection from frayed ends.
Another innovative feature is the ClimbReady coil, which means that the cord is always ready for use.
An Everflex treatment on Petzl Mambo ropes enables them to be more effectively stabilized and more consistent. This gives greater gripping ability and overall handling. The cord has two middle marks with black stripes on either side of the middle. The unit comes in a sealed plastic bag. Overall this is a good, cheap climbing rope.
10. Blue Water Lightning Pro
Effective elongation for fall protection
Can be used outdoors
Easy to transport, lightweight
This rope is expensive.
This narrow diameter CrossFit rope climbing lends itself to climbing in almost any environment, and it has visual appeal.
The rope is offered in a range of different patterned colors.
This is a high-quality rope with high durability, has a high weather resistance when it does get wet, it will dry out very quickly.Read more
The Blue Water Lightning Pro is a double dry dynamic single model. It is a lightweight rope with a 9.7 mm diameter. It is a stylish and attractive rope that is also extremely well made. The strength, elasticity and grip level of the cord is outstanding. It handles very smoothly, having a slip-resistant surface that allows you to maintain a firm hold every time.
The Blue Water Lightning Pro will stand up to inclement outdoor conditions. It will dry out quickly from rain and soon be back to the original condition. The elongation means that falls are very soft and comfortable. A very good rope, if a little pricey.
The Blue Water Lightning Pro comes in three colors: pink, green, and a mix of pink and green. The other ropes we reviewed did not offer many color options or, often, none at all. If you have to transport the rope, you will find it is both lightweight and easy to pack, since Blue Water designed it with a pliable outer sheath.
Criteria Used for Evaluation
Use is an individual preference
Seeing that rope hanging from the ceiling, just waiting to be climbed on can instill both fear and excitement, especially if you never climbed a rope before. Climbing ropes aren't so hard, you just have to make sure you know what you're doing, and that you're doing it safely.
Rope climbing will definitely test your strength, endurance, and your bravery - if you suffer from a fear of heights, you probably won't have such a good time when climbing ropes! In order to climb the rope properly, there are a few things you can do. First, grip the rope properly, with one hand positioned above the other. Let the trail hang between your legs. Then try to pull yourself up by bending your elbows, and once you lifted yourself up as much as you could, grab onto the rope with your other hand, and repeat the motion.
You can let the rope hang behind your leg and over your toes, and then stand with your other foot on your toes, so the rope acts as a break. This will help you beat the rope easier and faster since you'll be supporting your bodyweight. Challenge yourself to go up the rope as fast as you can, and see how you do!
Rope climbing is something that we've been doing since ancient times. It's very simple, can be mastered easily and it's very effective for physical growth. Before you actually climb the rope successfully, you will need to be decently fit. That's not to say that you can't climb the rope at all if you're just a beginner - but you will have a hard time climbing it. If you are a beginner, there are still many things you can do to prepare yourself for the rope. First, you must master doing the pull-up. If you cannot do this, there is no way you will be able to pull your own body weight up. Push-ups will also develop the strength of the muscles needed for you to scale the rope successfully. You can also tie a dumbbell or a kettlebell to the end of the rope, and then throw that part over a pull-up bar.
Then pull the rope towards you, and gradually increase the weight of the dumbbells until you are sure you can lift yourself up to the rope.
Weather resistance for durability
Weather resistance refers to a rope's ability to withstand being outside under all weather conditions. Even in areas with temperate climates, being outside will still have an impact because of temperature changes and precipitation. Cold weather can cause a manila rope to shrink, and rain will be absorbed by an organic rope. In cold weather, the water may even freeze and cause damage from expansion.
We have specified, in our reviews, whether each rope can be left outside or not. Synthetic ropes generally can. They are made from plastic or poly fibers that will not be affected by temperature changes. Some of these ropes even have design features that allow quick, easy installation on many kinds of frames or supports. This will let you make a temporary climbing station if you want to hold a friendly competition with friends or perhaps demonstrate rope fitness at an event.
The very thin ropes we reviewed, the ones that usually come in different colors, are often primarily rock climbing ropes. This explains their flexibility, portability, and high elasticity for fall protection. Of course, these climbing ropes are more than sturdy enough to be used inside. Regardless of which rope style you decide to buy, read the manufacturer's directions carefully so you will know whether you can safely leave the rope outside or not.
Value equates to performance
As usual, value refers to the quality and features of a product weighed against how much you paid for it. A versatile rope, that can be used indoors or outdoors and that has quick connect installation, is a good value if the manufacturer prices it so that a home fitness enthusiast can easily afford it.
An unreliable rope that will splinter, fray, and change in size shortly after you install it is not a good value, even at a bargain-basement price.
To help you get the best value for your fitness dollar, we consider multiple factors in writing our reviews. Few people who are in the market for a fitness rope would consider just length, or just material, or just weather resistance. A rope that comes in every imaginable length is still not a good value if you need special equipment or posts just to install it.
This is why most manufacturers will include their specifications on each product page. These are important numbers that you should always consider when shopping for a climbing rope.
Durability is a vital factor in any of our reviews, whether we are comparing ropes, shoes, weight benches or any other equipment. An ab roller, for example, can have a great range of motion, but that will not matter if the handles are shoddily designed and one of them falls off.
Finding and using a durable, long-lasting rope is especially important because a broken rope can lead to serious injury. And, too, durability depends on the rope's intended use and how often you climb on it. We cannot install a manila rope in a tree, for example, and expect it to last more than two or three years. Manila climbing ropes manufacturers are very honest and open about their ropes being for indoor use only.
As you consider our reviews and begin to comparison shop for your new rope, make sure your final purchase is one that will hold up under long term use. This will give you peace of mind, so you can focus on meeting your fitness goals and not on replacing or repairing your equipment.
We all know to pay attention to how much weight a rope can hold. But how much the rope itself weighs may seem unimportant, since we are usually not picking the rope up and carrying it around.
However, weight should be a consideration for anyone looking to buy a fitness rope. If it is exceptionally heavy, you may need a friend's help getting it into position and installing it. You must also ensure that any mounting hardware you use, including a frame or post, is rated for both the rope's weight and your weight, or the typical weights of whoever else will be using it. You can never be too detailed when it comes to safety and injury prevention.
A good rule of thumb is that organic ropes will weigh more than poly or dacron ropes. If you want a rope you can take on excursions, perhaps scaling small rock walls or clambering up trees (large trees with tough limbs that can handle a person's weight), one of the synthetic thin line climbing ropes is your way to go.
Expert Interviews & Opinions
It should go without saying, but, to cover all bases, we would like to remind you never to use a climbing rope for anything other than its intended purpose.
Doing so can void the warranty, shorten the life of the rope, and cause injury. Using the rope properly means a solid installation, according to the directions that come with the rope. It also means knotting the rope, if it is not already knotted, as needed. If the rope comes knotted, and you know the knots are something you need or just prefer, leave the knots in place. As you gain upper body strength and cardio endurance, you can remove the knots to give yourself more of a challenge.
Just like you wouldn't put car tires on a bicycle, you should not modify the rope in a way that will prevent it from performing properly. Use the rope for climbing, and it will reward you with increased fitness and years of faithful service.
It is hard to think of a criteria more important that durability. Most of us have had the bad experience of buying a product we love, that seems to make our lives easier, only to have it fall apart or malfunction after just a few weeks of use.
Fortunately, a situation like this is easy to avoid. Simply read each review, talk to friends who use fitness ropes, and carefully review all the manufacturer's documents. Many times, the rope's user manual is available in PDF form even without having to buy the product. The user's manual will give you a strong idea of how durable you can expect the product to be. It will also give you tips for using and maintaining the rope over time.
Other Factors to Consider
We reviewed the capacity of these ropes in a broad criteria sense.
We looked at the actual weight of the ropes, we needed to establish if the weight was suitable for a hanging rope which will be regularly subjected to use, we wanted to know if the weight will contribute towards the rope rating performance, shape, and form.
We reviewed weight to check on how easy the climbing ropes system will be for setting up and using and we needed to establish how portable it is if it has to be taken down and set up elsewhere.
We looked at the approach different brands of climbing ropes that take for creating climbing rope.
A rope is a rope? Actually, this is not so simple, there are many types of materials used for making rope, some are natural products-fibers with a historical record for being good to use a rope.
There are synthetic fibers that can be used to make climbing ropes or blended with traditional fibers to make rope. Brand makers are very innovative, they will use different thickness, different strand combinations.
Different rope colors exist and this will depend on where the materials are sourced from and if the materials are blended with chemical or other materials.
Our review that brand makers look at offering options for climbing ropes but are limited within a narrow range of options.
Value climbs with materials and performance
Our favorite climbing rope is the Rogue manila hemp, a rugged, fine grip model that is made in the USA. It is slip-resistant and guaranteed not to fray. Coming in second is the Fringesport model with clamp, an incredibly tough cord with a 16,000-pound resistance level and a great gripping ability. Our best value rope is the Fitness Solutions white climbing cord, which features an extra-thick diameter to challenge your forearms while you’re climbing. As you can see, climbing ropes are a great addition to your gym, and can provide you with many benefits that you will certainly feel! We hope our guide has helped you find what you're looking for.
Frequently Asked Questions
q: What are the benefits of using a fitness rope?
Rope climbing seems like a specialized movement, but in reality, it has more cross-training benefits than many of us realize. Here are a few of them.
1. Climbing a rope will give you a stronger grip. Obviously, you need that grip to stay on the rope and keep making an upward movement. But many times, as you climb, you will keep your hand clenched in one spot for several moments. That sustained grip is vital for weightlifting. The harder you can grasp a barbell, the more weight you can put on it with better control.
2. Arm progress--pulling your entire body up a rope, with nothing to assist you but empty air, will hit muscles you cannot train by doing push-ups or chin-ups. If you make the rope a regular part of your routine, you will find yourself getting stronger in ways you did not expect. You can apply that arm strength and agility to a whole variety of rope movements.
3. It just makes you feel good--seriously, think of the increased confidence and glow you can achieve by doing something you probably couldn't do when you started. You will have more energy, feel stronger and more capable, and live with the knowledge that you could escape a crisis situation that somehow involved climbing a rope up and away from danger.
q: What else can I do with a rope?
Good question. If you use one of the standard thickness organic ropes-they are the heaviest-there are many things you can do to have fun and challenge yourself.
Of course, this depends on the installation hardware of your rope. If it is a permanent install, with an eyebolt and no carabiner, taking the rope off and putting it back on will be too onerous. But a rope with an adjustable clamp can come down from the support at any time, and be replaced when you are ready to climb again.
With the rope down on the floor, you now have a battle rope. Here are just a few of the exercises you can work into a HIIT routine using your rope.
Jumping power slams. Do a squat with one rope end in each hand, give your core a second, then jump into the air as high as possible while slamming the rope onto the ground. It gives you a full-body workout in one fast move.
Alternating wide circles. This is possibly the grandmother of all battle rope exercises. Simply stand with a rope end in each hand and swing the ends around in a circle. It looks like you are actually battling another person holding their own rope. This will work out your arms, shoulders, back, and core since your core has to be engaged just to keep moving the climbing ropes in a circle.
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