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Climbing Debuts at Olympics as it Gains Popularity in Cambodia

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Phnom Penh: The 2020 Tokyo Olympics get underway four weeks on Friday and a new event, “sport climbing” will be making its debut. According to the International Federation of Sports Climbing, there will be 40 sport climbing athletes participating in the Summer Games. The event includes three disciplines; speed, bouldering and lead.

Climbing is slowly gaining popularity in Cambodia. It all started in Siem Reap back in 2008, when the NGO “Angkor Climbers Net” was founded by Japanese and Cambodian donors. Their mission was to help improve the health of Cambodian children through sports climbing. The NGO also contributed to the founding of the Cambodian Climbing Federation, which selects the best athletes to be part of the National Team.

The national federation, which is officially registered as a member of the International Federation of Sport Climbing, took part in its first international competition at the Asian Youth Championships held in Chongqing in 2018. It had no luck back then, but it was a good start and hopefully we will see Cambodia represented in Sport Climbing at the 2024 Olympics in Paris.

If you are in Phnom Penh, the Phnom Penh Climbing Gym is the only facility in the capital to train your sport climbing skills. The gym was seeing a steady increase in members, before it was forced to suspend operations due to the pandemic. It’s hoping to be able to reopen soon.

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