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AMGA Single Pitch Instructor Course

$525Purchase required to enroll


AMGA Single Pitch Instructor Course

The Single Pitch Instructor course replaced the well known Top Rope Site Management Course in 2008. The course is similar to the TRSMC with the inclusion of leading single pitch routes up to grade 5.6.

The SPI is a 5-day program that we offer with the AMGA. It is comprised of a three-day (27 hour) training course and separate two day (18 hour) assessment. This course will train you in the proper ways of setting up and instructing a group while working in single pitch terrain (including top-roping and leading single pitch routes). It provides a high level of the many needed skills and techniques which allow you to handle the situation with confidence and skill. This course is for those who work as instructors or guides at guide services, climbing gyms, outing groups, camps, schools/colleges, etc. as climbing instructors now, or for climbers who are interested gaining the proper international skills to become one. After successfully completing the course, it is suggested you take some time to practice the skills (everyone gets a course evaluation to help you prepare for the assessment) and gain more experience on the rock. Then, when you feel ready, you take the 2-day assessment. After successfully demonstrating that you are able to provide a high level of knowledge and consistency with the skills, you will receive a certification from the American Mountain Guides Association (valid for three years) and a one-year Associate membership to the organization.

This course can run privately or in a group. You can also visit http://www.amga.com/programs/rock_SPI.php for more specific details. The rates for the SPI are specialty rates and are not listed on out Rates & Reservations page. For more information please contact us.

SPI Course Details:
The SPI will be able to proficiently facilitate and instruct the sport of rock climbing in a single pitch setting. Single Pitch Instructors supervise and teach climbing at any single pitch cliff, working at the base or from the top. They can work at sites where the anchors are accessed by non technical terrain and also by leading. For the purpose of the SPI Program a single pitch climb is one which:
• Is climbed without intermediate belays
• Presents no difficulties on approach or retreat, such as route finding, scrambling or navigating

The SPI course is not a ‘climbing’ course. It is an instructor training course for current, proficient and active rock climbers and for climbing instructors who currently teach rock climbing that wish to gain the SPI Certification.
The SPI is the first stage of the AMGA’s Rock Discipline guide training and certification program and will significantly help candidates that wish to work towards the next stage in the program, the AMGA Rock Instructor Course. The course teaches many instructor specific topics such as professionalism, teaching techniques, risk management, group site organization, climbing site conservation/LNT and assistance/rescue skills.

SPI Course Candidate Pre-Requisites
You meet the pre-requisites for the SPI course if you:
1. Are a current member of the AMGA and have a genuine interest in rock climbing and in instructing novices on single pitch crags.
2. Are at least 18 years old at the time of the course.
3. Have at least 12 months prior climbing experience.
4. Are an active climber with traditional lead climbing experience (leader placing pro).
5. Have trad lead climbed a minimum of 15 rock climbing routes (any grade).
6. Are capable of comfortably climbing 5.8 while on a top rope.

The above pre-requisites are absolute minimums and most candidates have way in excess of the above.

Without having at least this amount experience you are unlikely to play a constructive part on the course or be able to make best use of the training. If you are unsure of your skill levels we suggest hiring an AMGA/IFMGA certified guide to evaluate and enhance your skills and experience prior to SPI Program enrollment.

Please note that leading is not part of the course. While having lead is a pre-requisite, you will not lead any routes in the course. It is only required for the movement skills in the exam.

NOTE - as of 2015, there are new requirements to enroll - you must now be a current member before enrolling. Membership is no longer provided in the course or assessment fees.

Step 1: Join the AMGA (or log-in to your existing account)

Step 2: Apply to Your Course or Assessment

  • Sign in to your myAMGA account.
  • Click the “Apply for a Program” tab.
  • Select the discipline and course type you are applying to.
  • Select the specific program you are applying to and click “apply.”
  • Confirm your prerequisites.