The UIAA, or International Mountaineering and Climbing Federation, tests and rates virtually every climbing rope on the market. Use only climbing ropes certified by the UIAA.
The UIAA rates each rope according to the number of falls it can handle. A rope may endure longer or not as long as the UIAA rating, depending on the severity, angle and potential rope abrasion caused by the climber's falls.
Use a dynamic climbing rope, not a static rope, for rock climbing purposes. The dynamic rope elongates when a climber falls, cushioning the fall and lessening the impact on his body.
Protect the climbing rope in every rock climbing application by avoiding sharp rock edges and other potentially damaging features at all costs. Keep the rope in a rope bag to avoid contact with corrosive materials.
If you can see the core of the climbing rope through the sheath---a core shot---retire that climbing rope immediately.
Article Written By Alli Rainey
A professional writer since 1997, Harvard graduate Alli Rainey has written several books, including "Wyoming: An Explorer's Guide." Her articles have appeared in "Climbing Magazine," "Rock & Ice," and "Men's Fitness," among many others.