01690 720214

Mountaineering Instructor Award Training

Course Overview

The 9 day course covers the technical aspects of rock climbing and mountaineering for the mountaineering instructor together with essential training in cliff rescue, as well as sessions on skill acquisition, the mountain environment, strategies for teaching navigation and the role of the MIA holder in the ML scheme.
You must be registered on the Mountaineering Instructor Award scheme with Mountain Training prior to attending this course and have the required experience.

Experience Required

Scheduled Dates

Detailed Course Notes

You should be 18 years old to attend this course.

Pre requisites for the training course

Mountain Training (MT) strictly requires that all students are specifically registered for the Mountain Instructor Scheme prior to commencing the course. They will not recognise completion of the course by non-registered participants. Please do not book a place on a course until you are registered with the scheme.

Ensure your DLOG is fully completed with your experience. To get the most out of the course do arrive climbing confidently at VS 4C standard.

Course content

We will work closely with the MT syllabus. In particular we will concentrate on areas that the board feels it is difficult for candidates to learn on their own. The programme may be revised at short notice to take account of weather and other considerations, in such a way as to satisfy the spirit and detail of the Mountaineering Instructor Scheme syllabus. The nine days are generally split into the following nine areas:

Single pitch climbing

  • Crag use with different types of group
  • The Single Pitch Award and beyond
  • Using single pitch crags and sea cliffs at a higher level.

Introduction to problem solving

  • Hoists
  • Lowers
  • Escaping the system
  • Retreat from multi-pitch crags

Multi-pitch climbing

  • Route choice/ finding
  • Placing protection
  • Belays and stance management
  • Rope systems and management

Multi-pitch teaching and lead climbing

  • Teaching skills 'on the move'
  • Preparing students to lead
  • Protecting yourself and a student leader

Problem solving in a multi pitch setting

  • Simple solutions for simple problems
  • Putting into practise skills learnt on the introduction day
  • Evacuation scenario

Navigation techniques

  • Personal skills
  • Teaching strategies at all levels
  • Standard of navigation for national awards

Mountain days

  • Scrambling techniques with students
  • Short rope techniques
  • Interpretation of the environment
  • Short pitches and direct belays
  • Steep ground and rope work for the mountain leader

Group adventure activities

  • Sea level traversing, gorge scramble or similar
  • Tyroleans and clip lines
  • Other relevant ropework

In addition, there will be evening classroom or centre based sessions, covering some of the more theoretical aspects of the syllabus. We intend to look at the following areas:

  • Climbing equipment for the 'technical expert'
  • Climbing walls and their use
  • Teaching skills
  • The work of Mountain Training UK
  • Professional codes, ethics and practices.
  • AMI and insurance
  • Introduction to short roping
  • Assessment skills

Individual interviews will be held at the end of the week for feedback and guidance.

Useful Books

  • Complete Guide to Rope Techniques by Nigel Shepherd
  • Handbook of Climbing by Fyffe & Peter
  • Hillwalking by Steve Long (MLTUK official publication)
  • Rock Climbing by Libby Peter (MLTUK official publication)

Also recommended reading
  • Rock Climbing for Instructors by A. Richardson
  • The Mountain Training Handbook by P. Hill and S. Johnson

The following titles are relevant to specific syllabus topics and should be available through libraries or climbing bookshops.
  • The Birds of Britain and Europe by Heinzel (Collins 1987)
  • The Wild Flower Key by Francis Rose (Warner)
  • The Mammals of Britain & Europe by Corbet and Ovenden (Collins)
  • The State of the World’s Mountains by Peter Stone
  • Reading relevant magazines is also a good way to keep abreast of current issues in the climbing world.

What's Included In The Price?

Whether you choose to stay with us or you have alternative accommodation nearby, the following items are included in the total cost.

    Afternoon tea & homemade cakes
    Equipment hire
    Free (low-speed) wifi access in the bar & dining room
    In course transport
    Railway station pick up & drop off (please call to arrange)
    Course Workbook & documentation
    Parking with CCTV surveillance
    Free use of climbing wall, gym, MTB skills course & rolling pool

    If you choose to stay with us, these items are also included in the total cost:

    Accommodation the night before your course
    Accommodation during your course
    Breakfast & evening meal
    Bar Lunch/packed lunch

Accommodation For This Course

Plas y Brenin Main House

Your course is based at Plas y Brenin, The National Mountain Sports Centre in Capel Curig, North Wales, LL24 0ET.

If you are staying with us,

If you have chosen to add accommodation onto this course or holiday it is usually in the main house in a comfy en-suite room (normally shared with another guest). Each room has tea and coffee making facilities and all bed linen and towels are provided.

This includes accommodation the night before your first day. Your room will be available from 6pm. On your last day you will need to vacate your room by 10am. It is sometimes possible to arrange to stay an extra night please phone 01690 720214 for availability and cost.

Secure storage facilities, showers and toilets are available for you to use on your departure day once you have checked out of your room should you need them, please ask at reception.

Also included, if you chosen to add accommodation, are all your meals - breakfast, packed lunch, afternoon tea and freshly baked cakes and a three course evening meal. Please bear in mind an evening meal is not provided on the night before your course or on the last day of your course but our bar will be serving meals from 7.00pm until 8.45pm.

If you are are not staying with us but coming in each day,

If you choose to come in daily for your course or holiday you will need to arrive ready for a 9am welcome talk on the first day. For the rest of your course or holiday you will need to be here for 9.15am. We return from a full day of activity, usually in time for tea and cakes at 5pm (included).

There are more activities from 5.30 - 6.30 on some days of your course or holiday, please check on the first day.

For most of our awards and qualification courses there will be further evening sessions on some days which you need to attend, please check on the first day.

There is an 8pm adventure talk by one of our coaches on Saturday, Monday and Wednesday evenings which you are welcome to come to. Find out more about the upcoming talks here.

On the final day you will be finished by 5pm.

For courses based on-site our bar will be serving lunches from 12pm until 2pm or you are welcome to bring a packed lunch.

If your course is based away from the centre then you will need to bring a packed lunch with you. Each evening our bar serves evening meals from 7pm until 8.45pm if you wish to eat here.

You can arrange to have any of the following meals - breakfast, packed lunch and a three course centre dinner, by contacting our customer services team on 01690 720214 or

follow this link for more details

What Equipment Do You Need To Bring?

  • Personal mountain clothing

  • Waterproof jacket and trousers

  • Warm hat, gloves, neck gaiter/buff, sunhat

  • Walking boots

  • Day rucksack

  • Rucksack liner (e.g. rubble bag or dry bag)

  • Drink bottle

  • Flask

  • Lunch bag/box

  • Personal first aid kit

  • Gaiters (optional)

  • Headtorch

  • High factor sunscreen

  • Midge repellent

  • Notebook and pen

  • OS Explorer 17 1:25,000 Snowdon & Conwy Valley (ideally laminated if not bring a map case) (Can be purchased from our shop)

  • OS Landranger 115 1:50,000 Snowdon (ideally laminated if not bring a map case) (Can be purchased from our shop)

  • Compass (Silva Expedition 4 recommended)

  • Fine permanent pen (for writing on laminated maps)

  • Rockshoes

  • Harness

  • Helmet

  • Climbing rack

  • 2-3m of 5-6mm cord for prussic loops

  • MT logbook and confirmation your registration has been approved for the award

Plas y Brenin will provide all ropes for use during the course. If you plan to climbing in your free time you will need your own ropes.

Customer Reviews For This Course

Dont forget your lunch

Garreth Stockton

I had a great time on this course during late July. The content and pace is amazing, and you quickly learn to eat your sandwiches on the bus as you don't stop during the day.
Fantastic instructors with a massive wealth of experience and knowledge and a great group of colleagues to work with.
The crag evacuation day was highly memorable. 5 hours of problem solving in the heaviest rain I have seen in Snowdonia. Still if its not raining its not training.

Not found what you were looking for?

You can hire one of our coaches instructors or guides from only £250 per day. They'll tailor the day to suit your aims and aspirations perfectly.
You can enjoy one to one coaching for that cost or if you get together as a group, depending on the activity, you can split that cost between up to 6 of you. If you are a group we can run any of our courses on a date that suits you and your friends. Or you could just write your own agenda for a week or weekend and we'll price it up for you - with or without accommodation. What's more, just like out normal course fees, our private instructor hire charge covers all your equipment too. Click on the link below to fill in a request form and one of our coaches will call you back (or e-mail if you'd prefer) to discuss things in detail with you.

Fill in a Callback Form

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