If your kiddo seems to be always jumping off the walls, have them try out rock climbing! Rock climbing is a great sport that helps increase strength, flexibility, and coordination. There are many indoor rock climbing gyms in New York City and we have curated a list of the best gyms with programs for children. Each gym is different in their own way, but each focus on helping your child reach new heights. Whether you are looking for bouldering or top-roping, you will find a fit for your future climber.
Looking for more sports to try? Check out the Best Basketball Programs for New York City Kids in NYC!
Indoor Rock Climbing Gyms in NYC
21 West End Ave.
At Central Rock Gym, you can visit anytime with a Day Pass, no reservation needed beforehand! This gym is a mainly bouldering facility and is welcome to children of all ages. Those 13 and under are welcome until 6 pm on Mondays through Fridays. On weekends, children 13 and under are welcome until 4 pm. If your child is under 8, they recommend signing up for their Staff belay sessions. Central Rock Gym also has a variety of youth programs if your child gets hooked on climbing or has more experience — from a recreational club to an elite team. They also offer after-school kids classes, recommended for kids ages 6 to 10 years old, which is the perfect way to introduce your child to the world of rock climbing.
West: 3225 Broadway
East: 1506 Lexington Ave
Steep Rock is another bouldering rock climbing gym and has two facilities. Bouldering is a type of rock climbing without ropes or harnesses on shorter walls over padded surfaces. Children under 13 are allowed to climb at both facilities until 6:30 pm. The minimum age to climb at Steep Rock East is 5; at Steep Rock West, the minimum age to climb is 8. Before visiting the gym, the Steep Rock staff asks to review their health and safety guidelines and book ahead.
23-10 41st Ave, Long Island City
Brooklyn Boulders offers three different youth programs — Kids Academy, Teen Academy, and Adventure Days. The Kids Academy, for ages 5 through 11, focuses on socializing while bouldering and top-roping all while socially distanced. The Teen Academy, for ages 11 through 15, will learn techniques and challenge themselves in a non-competitive environment. And in order to keep everyone safe, Brooklyn Boulders has healthy and safety guidelines all climbers, staff, and visitors must abide by.
81 Quay St., Brooklyn
This rock climbing gym is a perfect option for older kids ages 13 and up! GP81 prides itself on its completely custom environment with walls and climbing holds unique to the facility. For all participants under 18, they must have a signed waiver before climbing. The gym is open from 6 am to 10 pm on Mondays through Fridays and on weekends, they are open from 8 am to 9:40 pm. They are no longer taking walk-ins due to the pandemic, so make sure to reserve a session ahead of time on their website!
321 Starr St., Brooklyn
Whether your kiddo is a new climber or an experienced climber, MetroRock has a program for you! At MetroRock, you’re allowed to drop in and try out bouldering even without any experience. The staff will walk your child through a tutorial and if they find that they enjoy it, you can sign them up for the Intro to Ropes Class if they are 14 or older. They also have after-school classes, a climbing team, and private belayer sessions.
11-11 44th Dr., Long Island City
At The Cliffs Climbing, they have both recreational and competitive programs for kids. They focus on individualized learning, climbing skills and technique, and teaching life skills. For the recreational programs, your child can join the Viklings if they are between the ages of 6 and 9. Otherwise, they can join the Club Vikings program if they are 10 or above. Both programs don’t have any prerequisites required and are open to all levels of experience. Registration is open on a rolling basis on their website, so you can book a spot now!