Effective March 1 2021, Übergrippen will require the use of Assisted Braking Devices for all top rope and lead belaying. 


As climbing evolves, so do the technology, techniques, and best practices we use to mitigate the risk of our sport.  Assisted Braking Devices (ABD’s) provide extra stopping force either through the geometry of the device or a mechanism in the device that actively grabs the rope.  Used properly, ABD’s provide an additional layer of protection against roped climbing accidents.  They assist belayers in arresting falls and make it easier to lower climbers in a controlled manner.

We understand that tube-style belay devices, such as the ATC, also work well when used properly.  However, they don’t provide a backup in the event of a belayer losing control of the brake strand.  While we acknowledge that tube-style devices still play a role in climbing, due to advancements in technology, we feel as though they are no longer ideal for single pitch applications.  As all indoor climbing is single pitch climbing, we are updating our belay policy to require the use of ABD’s for ALL belaying at Übergrippen.  

This policy change doesn’t change the way we expect people to belay.  As always, all belayers must maintain control of the brake strand at all times and be alert and attentive while belaying.  ABD’s are not “auto-locking” or “hands-free” and should not be treated as such.  

Approved devices include both passive geometric brake assist such as the Jul2, MegaJul, ATC Pilot, Smart, and ClickUp, and active brake assist such as the Petzl GriGri, Trango Verso, and Wild Country Revo. Unapproved devices include all classic tube style devices that do NOT have a geometric brake assist (ATCs, Verso, etc), eight plates, and stitcht plates. This is not an exhaustive list of approved devices; please feel free to ask our staff if you have any questions on what is acceptable or not.

What we’re doing to help your transition

Providing free instruction on how to use ABD’s

If you’ve never used an ABD before, our staff will happily show you how to use any ABD.  No appointment required, just come see us at the desk!

Providing free ABD demos as available

Whether you’re buying your first ABD or just looking to expand your arsenal, we will be loaning out various ABD’s so you can test them out on a few climbs and see how you like them.  We have the following devices available.

Edelrid Jul 2
Edelrid Mega Jul

Edelrid Giga Jul
Beal Birdie

Petzl Grigri
Petzl Grigri+
Black Diamond ATC Pilot
ClimbTech Clickup
Mammut Smart 

Providing discounts on ABD purchases

Members receive a 15% discount on all ABD’s in our shop through February 28, 2021. Non-members save 10% on ABDs.