Rock climbing has become more popular throughout the years. In fact, it made its debut at the 2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo, Japan.

Women in Rock Climbing

As the popularity of rock climbing grows, so does the rise in the number of incredible women breaking gender stereotypes and showing that they too can enjoy this extreme sport. Not only that, female rock climbers have been setting records in what is deemed a male-dominated world.

A Source of Inspiration

Whether you started rock climbing to have an exciting but challenging hobby or have a fun way to become more physically fit, you may now have come to love this sport. However, there are instances when it is hard to get motivated.

Fortunately, you can get inspiration from other female climbers who are crushing it. Follow them on Instagram and turn your feed into the most inspiring space.

Janja Garnbret

Nationality: Slovenian

Janja Garnbret is one of the most well-known female rock climbers. She is the first-ever female gold medalist in sport climbing at the Olympics. Her record is a testament to her ability and skills. She has participated in 35 Lead Climbing World Cup events. Of these, she had only missed the podium four times. Garnbret also became the first-ever athlete to have won all bouldering World Cup events in one season.


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A post shared by JANJA GARNBRET (@janja_garnbret)

Instagram: @janja_garnbret


Miho Nonaka

Nationality: Japanese

Miho Nonaka took home the silver medal in Sports Climbing in the 2020 Summer Olympics. She started climbing at the age of 9. When she was 17, she participated in her first world cup. She won a gold medal and six silver medals at the Bouldering World Cup in 2018.

Instagram: @nonaka_miho


Ashima Shiraishi

Nationality: Japanese-American

Ashima Shiraishi is considered a climbing prodigy. Shiraishi made noise in the competitive rock climbing scene at the age of 13, which was when she became the youngest person and second female ascent of a 5.14d/5.15a route. Additionally, she was the first woman to climb a V15 boulder.


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A post shared by Ashima Shiraishi (@ashimashiraishi)

Instagram: @ashimashiraishi


Margo Hayes

Nationality: American

Margo Hayes made history when she made the first woman ascent of a 5.15a, La Rambla in Spain. Hayes became the first female rock climber to complete the so-called 5.15a Trilogy after completing 5.15a routes Papichulo and  Biographie. She has won silver in the IFSC World Youth Championships and is a part of the US National Team.


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A post shared by MΔRGΩ HΔΨΣS👑 (@margojain)

Instagram: @margojain


Alex Puccio

Nationality: American

Alex Puccio is dubbed the most accomplished female boulderer in America. She has won two gold, four silver, and eight bronze medals in the world cup. Overall, she has ascended more than 24 boulders graded V12 (8A+) in Europe and the US. Despite getting surgery due to an injury in 2015, Puccio climbed V13 (8B) with a Free Range ascent in Boulder Canyon in the same year.


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A post shared by Alex Puccio (@alex_puccio89)

Instagram: @alex_puccio89


Emily Harrington

Nationality: American

Emily Harrington is a five-time National champion in sport climbing. She was the first female rock climber to ascend multiple 5.14 sports climbs. Harrington was also named the first woman to free-climb the El Capitan via Golden Gate, which is the granite wall found in Yosemite National Park, in one day.

Instagram: @emilyharrington


Shauna Coxsey

Nationality: English

Shauna Coxsey is a professional rock climber who started climbing at the age of 4. She was appointed Member of the Order of the British Empire for her services in the field of climbing. She has won 30 medals in the World Cup for bouldering. Coxsey made a lot of records as well, becoming the first British female climber to finish the V12, V13, and V14 grades.


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A post shared by Shauna Coxsey (@shaunacoxsey)

Instagram: @shaunacoxsey


Akiyo Noguchi

Nationality: Japanese

Akiyo Noguchi took home the bronze medal in the 2020 Summer Olympics for Sports Climbing. She is well-known for winning four times in the IFSC Climbing World Cup in bouldering. Noguchi has retired from competing, closing her career with 169 World Cups and World Championships.

Instagram: @noguchi_akiyo


Angela Eiter

Nationality: Austrian

Angela Eiter started climbing when she was 11 years old. At the age of 15, she successfully climbed her first indoor 8a (5.13b). She has won three World Cups in Lead Climbing and four world championships. In 2020, she made the first ascent of Madame Ching in Imst, Austria. She suggested a 9b (5.15b) grade. Because of that, she recorded the first 5.15b ascent by a woman. It was also the hardest first ascent a woman has accomplished during that time.

Instagram: @angyeiter


Allison Vest

Nationality: Canadian

Allison Vest is among the well-known female rock climbers on social media. She gained a following because of her satirical videos. She ranked first in Canada’s 2020 Open Boulder Nationals, 2019 Open Lead Nationals, and 2018 Open Boulder Nationals. In 2019, she finished in 10th place in the World Beach Games conducted in Doha, Qatar.


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A post shared by ALLISON VEST (@allisonvest)

Instagram: @allisonvest


Final Thoughts

Rock climbing is more than just an activity. It offers various benefits to both physical and mental health. However, there are times when you may lack the motivation to do what you love doing.

In such cases, it can be helpful to see some of the most inspiring women climbers on your Instagram feed. They can serve as rock climbing role models. Seeing their experiences can give you the courage to push yourself to beat your personal best.

Connect with more female rock climbers on our Instagram.

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The Hows and Whys of Becoming an Amazing Lead Belayer
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