The AMGA Single Pitch Instructor Program is designed to enable climbing instructors to “proficiently facilitate and instruct the sport of rock climbing in a single pitch setting.” The SPI Course is not a ‘climbing’ course; it is an instructor training course for current, proficient and active rock climbers that aspire to instruct and for current climbing instructors who wish to gain the SPI certification. The course teaches many instructor specific tools enabling the individual to deliver exceptional experiences to students and clients in the single pitch environment.


Minimum Eligibility Criteria: See Prerequisites tab below


Length: A minimum of 16 hours run over a two-day period.


Maximum Ratio: 6 participants, 1 guide


Minimum Age: Under 18 will need written consent from parent/guardian


SPI Explained
  • It significantly improves the instructor’s skill sets and integrates into the next level of training, which includes the AMGA Rock Guide Course and the Multi-Pitch Instructor certification.
  • The program is for current, active rock climbers who have a real desire to teach rock climbing to novices in a single pitch setting.
  • The SPI Course is a 27-hour training course that normally runs as three consecutive nine-hour days or day classes with evening sessions.
  • The SPI Assessment is a minimum of 16 hours run over a two-day period.
  • You are a Professional Member of the AMGA.
  • You have a genuine interest in rock climbing and instructing novices on single pitch crags.
  • You are at least 18 years old at the time of the course.
  • You have at least 12 months prior climbing experience.
  • You are an active climber with traditional lead climbing experience (leader placing pro).
  • You have led a minimum of 15 traditional rock climbing routes (any grade).
  • You are capable of comfortably climbing 5.8 while on a top rope.

    The SPI Program is a three day (27 hour) training course and separate two day (16 hour) SPI Assessment. Certification lasts for three years as long as the candidate keeps current AMGA Membership and First Aid Certification. After three years current SPI’s need to re-take the SPI Assessment or take any higher level AMGA Program to maintain the SPI certification. 


    The above prerequisites are absolute minimums. Without having at least this amount experience you are unlikely to make best use of the training.



    DAY 1

    Session 1: SPI and AMGA Program Overview

    Session 2: Professionalism

    Session 3: Equipment
    Session 4: Knots and Hitches
    Session 5: Belaying
    Session 6: Protection and Anchoring 
    Session 7: Teaching
    End-of-Day Debriefs


    DAY 2

    Session 8: The Climbing Site
    Session 9: Site Organization and Group Management 
    Session 10: Base-Managed Sites
    Session 11: Assistance Skills: Base-Managed Sites
    Session 12: Programming and Risk Management
    End-of-Day Debriefs


    DAY 3

    Session 13: Instructor Demo Lead Climb
    Session 14: Top-Managed Sites
    Session 15: Lowering
    Session 16: Assistance Skills: Top-Managed Sites
    Session 17: Rappelling
    Session 18: Climbing Movement
    Session 19: Review Sessions
    Final Individual and Group Debriefs

    Does Include:

    • AMGA and/or IFMGA Certified Instructor(s)
    • AMGA SPI course curriculum. Certificate upon completion of the course.

    Does Not Include:

    • Food and Lodging
    • Personal Climbing Gear
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    Risk management is SAI’s number one priority. Our guides manage significant hazards inherent in the mountains such as avalanches, ice fall, rock fall, inclement weather, and high winds, but they cannot eliminate them. SAI guides draw from their wealth of experience and training to make sound decisions that maximize your experience without compromising the necessary margin of safety. Please clearly understand that mountaineering and all other mountain adventures are inherently hazardous sports. You are choosing to engage in an activity in which participants have been injured and killed. While those accidents are indeed infrequent, they may occur at any time and be out of our control. We ask that participants acknowledge the risk and hazards of these sports, and make their own choices about whether or not to engage in these activities.


    Q:What am I responsible to bring?

    A: Each one of course pages has information on what to bring under the tab “Price Includes”. We will also send you additional info on how to prepare for your guided day once via email once we have received your payment. 


    Q:How fit should I be for my course?

    A: Our courses vary from absolute beginner to more advanced techniques on the sharp end.  While a base level of fitness (moderate hiking) is generally necessary to get to the climb, all courses can be tweaked to match your level of fitness.


    Q: What if the weather is bad and we need to cancel/reschedule?

    A: Read our cancellation policy on our policies page.


    Q: Do I need to have prior climbing experience?

    A: Each course/objective has different experience requirements. This information can be found under the Prerequisites tab at the bottom of our course pages.  For example, you do not need any prior experience to enroll in our Intro to Mountaineering Course but would need some prior climbing experience to participate in our Learn to Lead Trad Course. 


    Q: Is there an age minimum? Can I bring my kids?

    A: No, there is not an age minimum and yes you can bring your kids! However, there are some courses where children would not be suitable. You can find more information under the “course details” tab on our course pages. Also, check out our custom guiding options where we can create custom itinerary for you and your family. 


    Q: Will I need transportation to get to the climb?

    A: Yes, we do not provide transportation. We encourage carpooling with other course participants whenever possible though to save the environment and parking space! Meeting times and locations will be sent out via email once you have booked a course with us. 


    Q: Do you offer lodging options?

    A: No. We offer recommended lodging options and sometimes discounted rates depending on the course or trip. Feel free to call us if you have any questions about lodging!


    Please review our cancellation policy here.


    Advanced registration is required to book this course. We have a limited amount of guides and book up regularly. Simply book online if you’re ready to secure a date or, give us a call during business hours if you have any questions.