• Zachary Wright

Routesetting at Mosaic

Since we’re a smaller neighborhood gym, we had to be creative in how we deliver a ton of value from our routesetting program. We wanted to make sure that

1. There are always plenty of high quality boulders for climbers of all ability levels, and

2. We keep the gym fresh by turning over our climbs regularly.

Here’s our strategy:

Our gym can support approximately 100 boulders at any given time. We decided to reset the gym every 4 weeks, as opposed to the 6-8 week (or longer) turnover that is standard at bigger gyms. This means that in any given week, we are delivering ~25 new boulder problems for our members. This allows us to provide lots of high quality climbs for every ability level, while the frequent turnover means the gym never gets stale.

We love that our members can look forward to a fresh batch of boulders each week, and that we can offer so much climbing at every ability level. Even if you’re brand new to climbing, you’ll have dozens of climbs to try, with more being set each week.

The Mosaic Circuit System

The main idea behind our circuit system is to encourage climbers to try climbs outside of their “usual” grades. By grouping climbs into circuits that span multiple V-grades, we want to emphasize the overall experience of the circuit, as opposed to just sending a single climb of a certain grade.

In our experience, climbers can shy away from trying certain climbs because they “don’t climb the grade.” The paradox is, if you never try a climb because you don’t yet climb that grade, how will you ever climb that grade? We hope our circuit helps climbers de-emphasize specific grades and explore a wider range of climbs during their sessions.

This system also encourages climbers to sample a diversity of climbing movements within each circuit. We structured our circuits to include a wide range of styles, moves, and terrain, with the goal of helping people develop well-rounded climbing abilities.

If you want to do every climb within a circuit, you’ll end up climbing on terrain that is both technical and powerful; you’ll do moves ranging from mantels to dynos; you’ll climb on large fiberglass features and small, dual-texture feet.

The Good Easy

(Note: “Easy” is a misnomer. What’s easy for one person can be hard for another. We’re just talking about the easier end of the climbing spectrum here.)

Setting high quality climbs across the difficulty spectrum is something that is personally

important to everyone involved in our setting program. Too often, we see beginners get stuck with low-quality, unimaginative climbs that seem to be set as an afterthought.

At Mosaic, we are taking the opposite approach: if we want to share the sport of climbing with a wider audience, we have to make sure that their first experiences on the wall are nothing short of awesome.

A beginner-level boulder with great movement and awesome holds.

We think that new climbers should get to enjoy all the things that make climbing magical at the highest level: great holds and inspired movement.

At Mosaic, you’ll find beginner-friendly climbs that incorporate the aesthetics and movement of harder climbs. Our white and yellow circuits (V0-V3 on the traditional V-scale) feature coordination moves, dynos, tons of fiberglass features + big volumes, and a ton of intention behind the movement.

Our routesetting program is unique to our gym and our community. We’re doing things differently than other gyms because we think this is the best way to serve our members and share climbing with a wider audience. We will keep improving our strategy as more people climb at our gym, with the goal of offering the best possible experience for our Mosaic climbing community.

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