Bouldering is a form of rock climbing that is performed without the use of ropes or harnesses. While it can be done without any equipment whatsoever, most climbers use climbing shoes to help secure footholds, chalk to keep their hands dry, and bouldering mats to prevent injuries from falls. Bouldering problems are usually less than 6 meters (20 ft.) tall. Artificial climbing walls allow boulderers to train indoors in areas without natural boulders and more padding.
Top rope climbing (or top roping) is a style in climbing in which the climber is securely attached to a rope which then passes up through an anchor system at the top of the climb, and down to a belayer at the foot of the climb. The belayer takes in slack rope throughout the climb, so that if at any point the climber were to lose their hold, they would not fall more than a short distance.
Lead climbing is a climbing technique used to ascend a route without access to the top of the rock. This technique involves a lead climber attaching themselves to a length of dynamic climbing rope and ascending a route while periodically attaching carabeaners to the face of the route and clipping into them. As lead climbing does not require a pre-placed anchor at the top of the route, it is often seen as less restrictive.