Retrospect: Halls & Walls 2018

Also in the second year of Halls & Walls in the NCC West of the Nuremberg Exhibition Centre, the event was very well received by exhibitors and trade visitors from the climbing gym sector. Around 1200 participants from all over the world came to the DAV climbing gym meeting on 23 and 24 November, attended expert lectures and discussed the latest developments at trade fair stands.


International exchange of the industry

48 hours of atmosphere, information and contacts: Halls & Walls 2018 once again gathered together the indoor climbing industry in Nuremberg and provided impulses for the coming year. The number of participants shows clearly the growth: 30 percent increase over the previous year. In addition, Halls & Walls is becoming more and more international: Exhibitors and visitors alike do not shy away from long journeys and travel to Nuremberg from all over Europe, from Australia, Asia and the USA. This shows once again that the fair is an important milestone for the international exchange of the industry.


New record reached in the exhibition area

On the exhibitor side, Halls & Walls scored 2018 with very good numbers, also. 125 companies from the climbing gym sector displayed their products on a net floor space of 1,350 m² in total. This represents an increase of 35 percent compared to 2017. Correspondingly the product range was of wide variety: climbing holds, climbing walls, safety mats, belay systems, clothing, cleaning equipment, sports nutrition, administrative software, dust reduction systems and much more - such a 360-degree industry panorama is currently only offered by Halls & Walls.


The indoor climbing industry in GB, USA and Japan

A magnet to visitors were also the expert lectures, which were once again translated simultaneously into German / English. In the first big theme block on Friday afternoon, Rich Emerson began with insights into the climbing gym sector in the UK. The Chairman of the British Climbing Wall Association (ABC) presented among others plans for a national climbing passport, on which, for example, individual belay knowledge could be stored. Ian McIntosh reported on the situation of the climbing gyms in the USA. The managing director and partner of the Mesa Rim Climbing Centre and USA Climbing Route Setter described in his presentation the enormous growth of the last ten years - inspired by intensive marketing, characterized by very large climbing facilities. Quite different in Japan, where in recent years many small bouldering gyms have emerged. The very special situation in Japan was described by the German coach of the Japanese national team, Benjamin Hartmann: the climbing sport plays a much bigger part in Japan than in all other countries in the world.


Digitisation in climbing gyms

On Saturday afternoon, the expert presentations in the room Paris focused on the question of how far digitisation can go in climbing gyms. First of all, Kay Schuster from Edelrid presented a tool for registration, management and testing of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE). In the following presentation, Frank Mergenhagen, Managing Director of Sub9's software company, focused on the digitisation of the inspection of climbing walls. An app for the individual design of training plans presented in the third lecture of the topic block Matthias Polig, CEO of Vertical-Life.


Climbing gyms in social media

The last big speech at Halls & Walls 2018 was also well attended. No wonder, as Hannes Huch from the Café Kraft in Nuremberg and Nina Gassauer from the DAV stood on the stage with two proven experts in social media. Unmistakable and easy to understand, the two revealed how important successful and professional communication in the social media can be for the success of bouldering and climbing gyms.


Come-Together-Party on Friday night

As a grand finale of the first day of the fair Ralph Stöhr from the magazine Klettern gave a hilarious look at the development of climbing sports from outdoor adventures to indoor activities. After the Stöhr's firework display of humour the audience switched directly to the get-together two floors below. There the band "Wicked and Bonny feat. Berise" was firing up the audience. Nevertheless, some trade fair visitors did not seem to have had enough of the business: At many booths exhibitors and visitors talked intensively far into the night. The evening was so successful due to the involvement of the party sponsors Boulders Kletterhallenservice, T-Wall, fritz-kola and Vertical-Life.


Bouldering competition after the fair: "E4 Legends"

On Saturday night there was a Halls & Walls after-work event in a nearby bouldering gym: the show contest "E4 Legends". For many visitors this was just the right event to end the fair. The bouldering hall E4 had invited international bouldering greats to face four rock-hard boulder problems – among them the DAV team athletes Alexander Averdunk, Jan Hojer, Yannick Flohé, Afra Hönig or Alma Bestvater. In the end, Alma Bestvater and Alex Khazanov were on the podium.

More information and pictures you can find here: E4 Legend Competition


Photo gallery of Halls & Walls

Some impressions of Halls & Walls 2018 show the pictures in the photo gallery