Onsight Rock Gym

5335 Western Avenue

Knoxville, TN 37921

(865) 888-9123

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5335 Western Avenue
Knoxville, TN, 37921


Onsight Rock Gym is a brand new, world-class indoor rock climbing gym in Knoxville. Featuring over 12,000 sq feet of climbing surface and walls that soar over 50 feet tall, we are Knoxville's largest and tallest rock climbing gym. Onsight offers top rope/lead climbing and bouldering for all ages and abilities as well as a wide array of programming for adults and youth. Onsight even has a separate climbing room for private parties and events. We are proud to be a part of Knoxville's community! 

New Climbers

A guide for new climbers on how to prepare for your first visit to Onsight Rock Gym.

new climbers


  • Everyone who enters the facility must have a current and valid Onsight Rock Gym Release of Liability Form (waiver) on file.

  • To get started climbing faster when you arrive, please fill out the online waiver before your visit.

  • Everyone under 18 years of age must have their waiver signed by his or her parent or legal guardian. If the parent or legal guardian will not be present, the waiver must be completed in advance. Legal guardians must provide proof of guardianship to sign a child's waiver.

  • All children under 13 years of age must be supervised by an adult at all times while at Onsight Rock Gym.

Basic information:

  • Upon arrival to our facility, all guests must complete a Gym Orientation with Onsight Rock Gym staff and watch a short Bouldering Orientation video before being granted access to any climbing area. This orientation procedure is mandatory and will include an introduction to all of our climbing areas, facility rules, and policies.

  • You can purchase a day pass, which lasts all business day (you can leave and return), a 10 visit punch pass, or one of our membership options.

  • What to wear? We highly suggest avoiding restrictive clothing such as jeans because it can limit movement and make rock climbing uncomfortable and more difficult. Any athletic type of pants would be perfect. No skirts or dresses are allowed while climbing. Don't forget to wear closed toed shoes! Rock climbing shoes, while not required, are highly recommended. Climbing harnesses, belay devices, chalk bags, and climbing shoes are all available for rent.

  • Have more questions? Visit our FAQ page or Contact Us

THREE options for a new climber's first visit:

Take an Intro to Climbing Class

Top rope climbing is the most common type of indoor rock climbing that people are familiar with. The rope is always through the anchors above you, at the top of the route. You will always have a fixed system with proper safety equipment that allows you to climb confidently while someone belays you from the ground, on the other end of the rope. Your belayer's job is to help arrest falls and safely lower you back to the ground. The basic skills required to belay are not difficult to learn, but require specific instruction from trained personnel and practice to properly master.

Without previous belaying experience, your best option is to take an Intro to Climbing Class. In this 90 minute class, you will learn the basics of climbing and top rope belaying. Upon successful demonstration of the new skills, you will receive a temporary top rope belay tag to belay for that day only. You may choose to return on a separate day to take the Top Rope Belay Test. 

  • Requirements: 13 years of age or older; classes are not required to use facility

  • Includes: Day pass for use of the facility on day of your class and a FREE return day pass to use within 2 weeks of your class date.

  • Booking: Reservations are recommended but not required. Check our events calendar for available dates + times.

  • Price: Members FREE (for one class only), Non-Members $35

More Information on Classes

Want to take a Family Intro to Climbing Class? This option allows the adults to take the class while the kids climb on the auto belays. A perfect way to get the whole family climbing together!


Bouldering is a type of climbing that involves climbing to shorter heights which are not tall enough to require a rope or harness. It also doesn't require you to have a partner, but it is always more fun to climb with others and have someone spotting you. For these reasons, bouldering is a great way to try out climbing! Onsight Rock Gym has a large bouldering area that is equipped with a super thick and seamless flooring system. 

  • You must be supervised by an adult if you are under the age of 13.

  • Although you do not have to be certified to boulder, you must understand the rules of bouldering, how to spot, and how to fall properly, which are covered in our mandatory Bouldering Orientation Video that you will watch when you arrive.


Try out an AUTO BELAY

Onsight offers seven Perfect Descent Auto Belay units in the kids’/beginner’s climbing room and five in our main climbing area. During private group events and parties (usually on weekends), the kids’/beginner’s room may be unavailable. Please call us ahead of time to ensure the room is available if you are interested in using the auto belays in that room. An auto belay eliminates the need for a human belayer. The auto belay takes up the slack as the climber ascends and controls the descent when the climber reaches the top or in the event of a fall. After a quick orientation on how to use the auto belays, you can clip yourself in and try out rock climbing! Children ages 12 and under must be clipped in by an adult and supervised at all times.