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Climbing lessons terms and conditions

Be in the know with all the terms and conditions of climbing lessons at UOP Sport

The University of Portsmouth Department of Sport and Recreation wants you and your child to enjoy and make the most of our sports facilities. To ensure that you know your rights and responsibilities when using our climbing lessons, our sports facilities and its services it is important that you read and understand these terms and conditions.

These terms solely relate to climbing lessons. For general behaviour and activities that take place on the climbing wall UOP Sport rules and regulations also apply and you should familiarise yourself with this document.

1. Teaching policies, procedures and parental responsibilities

1.1 All University of Portsmouth Climbing Instructors hold relevant qualifications and an in-date DBS check completed before they are allowed to teach.

1.2 Climbing Instructors will take responsibility for pupils during their climbing lessons, but any parents/guardians are required to remain nearby so that if required the parent/guardian can deal with toilet breaks or any behavioural issues. The University of Portsmouth Climbing staff will not take pupils to the toilet.

1.3 Parents/guardians must remain on the premises whilst the pupil is attending their climbing lessons. This is imperative in case of the unlikely event of a medical emergency, building evacuation or other emergency. It is the parent/guardian’s responsibility to supervise/watch their child get to and from their teaching station ensuring a prompt pick-up at the end of the lesson. Pupils must be collected promptly at the end of the lesson.

1.4 Parents/guardians must never distract the instructor during a lesson and should direct all communication through the reception staff or the Climbing Officer (if available). Parents/guardians should not speak with an Instructor during the period that lessons are in progress as it is dangerous and it may distract the Instructor from the supervision of the pupils in their lesson.

1.5 Pupils can be refused entry to the lesson if they are more than 5 minutes late for a lesson, as it disrupts the lesson for the other pupils.

1.6 A log book will be issued when joining the NICAS climbing course  (Levels 1 - 3). Lost books can be replaced by purchasing a new book from reception. 

2. Pupil illness

2.1 If your child is unwell, we recommend that you do not bring them to their climbing lesson.

2.2 If your child has been ill with diarrhoea or COVID/flu-like symptoms, they should not attend their lesson. To protect others, they should not climb for at least 48 hours or until symptoms have stopped.

3. Climbing lesson programme

3.1 The majority of our NICAS climbing lessons are held over a 90-minute time slot which includes time to take registers and assessments.

3.2 Child-to-instructor ratios are developed in line with NICAS Guidelines with 1:9 adult-to-child ratio

3.3 The University of Portsmouth Climbing programme reserves the right to cancel lessons at short notice at its discretion  if deemed necessary.

4. Climbing lesson dress code and hygiene

4.1 All children should wear appropriate clothing, no loose-fitting items such as hoodies. Climbing footwear will be provided.

4.2 No jewellery should be worn during a climbing lesson. Religious or medical bracelets are allowed but should not distract the climber from their lesson.

4.3 Please ensure that your child uses the toilet before the lesson commences. 

5. Pupil progression

5.1 All pupils on the University of Portsmouth Climbing programme will follow the “NICAS” skill development programme.

5.2 Instructors will continually assess all pupils’ progression throughout the course.

5.3 Progression of all pupils will be at the judgement of the climbing instructor and following the progression within the criteria of the “NICAS climbing Framework”.

5.4 Pupils will be moved up to the next level when they meet the skills criteria required and if there is adequate room in the next level for the movement to take place.

5.5 Upon completion of a level, the parent/guardian will be contacted explaining that the child is ready to move up to the next level via email/phone. 

5.6 Due to the continuous progressive nature of our programme, and the variety of ability levels within each session, we cannot guarantee a specific time slot on progression, as a space within the next level may not always be immediately available. Those waiting for spaces will be kept in their current lesson until a place becomes available and will be working on developing skills appropriate to the new level.

6. Climbing lesson payment

6.1 All fees for the University of Portsmouth NICAS program must be paid in advance of the lessons. Current fees can be viewed on the climbing web pages.

6.2 Direct Debit payments are taken on the 1st or 15th of each month based on your selection when signing up for climbing lessons.

6.3 We reserve the right to apply a joining fee where appropriate.

6.4 To cancel your Direct Debit for the University of Portsmouth Climbing Programme, please email and give one clear calendar month’s notice.

6.5 Failure to provide the full notice period to cancel your lesson place when paying with Direct Debit, may result in the University of Portsmouth taking recovery action for the outstanding payment.

6.6 The University of Portsmouth reserves the right to change the price of climbing lessons at any time. Direct Debit customers will be notified in writing with at least 10 working days’ notice of any change.

6.7 For any failed Direct Debits, the University of Portsmouth Climbing  Officer reserves the right to restrict access to the lessons until a suitable payment has been made for the missed Direct Debit Payment. Under these circumstances, the University of Portsmouth will not guarantee the same space in the existing lesson.

6.8 Direct Debit payments include one lesson per week at the agreed level of lessons for the monthly Direct Debit subscription.

6.9 The monthly Direct Debit subscription remains the same for each calendar month, regardless of the number of lessons that are delivered during the month i.e. some months there will be five lessons, whilst in most months there will be four. During December there will be two or three lessons depending on the cycle of the year. Over 12 months, with 12 equal Direct Debit payments, a total of 50 climbing lessons will be available to attend unless a lesson has been cancelled - please see section 8 for more details.

6.10 For the avoidance of doubt, University of Portsmouth climbing payments do not entitle you or your child to any other rights or privileges experienced under any other membership/contract type chosen except for those listed in these climbing lesson terms and conditions.

7. Changing and moving lesson

7.1 You may request a change of time, day or Climbing Instructor. We will try to accommodate your request, provided space is available. If you cannot be accommodated at that time, your child will be added to the movement’s list and you will be able to make movements through the ‘Home Portal’ when a space becomes available.

7.2 Climbing ability and speed of progression will vary depending upon the individual climber.

8. Climbing Wall closure and cancelled climbing lessons

8.1 In the event of a climbing wall closure, we will make every attempt to contact our customers as soon as possible. Contact will be via email or phone.

8.1.1 Customers paying for climbing lessons will have their Direct Debit for the subsequent month reduced to reflect the missed lesson.

8.2 In the event of a planned climbing wall closure, wherever possible, you will be offered an alternative lesson to accommodate your lesson.

8.3 University of Portsmouth Climbing programme reserves the right to cancel lessons should numbers fall below our minimum numbers per group (50% of lesson capacity). If this happens you will be offered an alternative lesson of the same level.

9. Missed lessons

9.1 Lesson fees are non-refundable where the pupil has either missed lessons or decided to withdraw from the programme altogether.

9.2 Lessons will run consecutively, the monthly fee will cover the cost of the weekly lesson regardless of pupil attendance, except for climbing wall closure/lesson cancellation (section 8).

9.3 In exceptional circumstances, management may exercise discretion on refunds or credit notes, but this would only be on the production of a medical certificate or documentation from a medical centre, hospital or GP.

10. Changing Instructor

10.1 We will use reasonable endeavours to provide the same instructor for each lesson within a course. However, cover instructors may be used without prior notification.

10.2 We reserve the right to appoint a new instructor at any time and may, at times, need to provide an alternative instructor for a lesson or lessons due to illness or any other unforeseen circumstances.

10.3 In the event an instructor is away for a long period we will try to keep the same instructor for the duration of the absence where possible.

11. Communication

11.1 The duty management team will be the people to resolve any facility issues. Any problems or issues should be conveyed through them. They can be contacted through reception.

11.2 If you have any questions regarding the progression of your child, please email the Climbing Officer at The University of Portsmouth Climbing team will contact you to discuss the query regarding your child. 

11.3 All parents/guardians are required to provide a valid e-mail address for quick communication purposes. This is essential so that we can inform you when your child is ready to move up to the next stage of lessons or for any cancellations.

12. Viewing

12.1 No photography or filming is permitted in the building, including the changing area without prior approval from the Centre Management.

13. Behaviour and Conduct

13.1 Parents accept that their child is under the supervision, control and care of the Climbing Instructor, during the lesson period. Should the child's behaviour be unsatisfactory and the lesson is being disrupted, the Climbing Instructor has the right to remove the pupil from the lesson.

13.2 The instructor may employ reasonable measures as necessary to maintain the smooth delivery of the lesson. 

13.2.1 We reserve the right to request that your child be removed from lessons should they persistently disrupt or are seen to be putting themselves or anyone else at risk during the lesson. No refund will be provided if a child is removed under these circumstances and suitable alternative arrangements cannot be made.

13.3 If a child in climbing lessons causes the cancellation of a lesson, we reserve the right to apply a penalty for loss of income for this activity. This will be administered and applied at the centre management's discretion.

14. Liability

14.1 Users of the University of Portsmouth’s climbing facilities accept that they do so entirely at their own risk.  The University of Portsmouth’s liability for any losses incurred by use of the climbing facilities is limited, to the fullest extent permitted by law, to the fees paid by the user. The University does not accept liability for loss or damage to personal belongings brought into the climbing facility.

15. Waiting List

15.1 Waiting lists will be checked weekly and parents will be contacted when a place becomes available on a

first come-first served basis.