Alex Honnold on climbing's Olympic debut: 'Sports is constantly changing'

World renowned professional adventure climber Alex Honnold, featured in the documentary 'Free Solo,' joined Olympics.com for a series of content pieces around the debut of sport climbing at the Olympic Games.

Picture by 2018 Getty Images

The only person in the world to climb the notorious El Capitan alone and without ropes, documented in the film Free Solo, Alex Honnold was watching along with the rest of us as his life passion, climbing, was featured in the Olympics for the first time at Tokyo 2020.

Sport climbing - in a combined event featuring speed climbing, bouldering, and lead climbing - was added to the Olympic programme for Tokyo, with 40 climbers from all around the world competing for two sets of medals - one men's, one women's.

"I just like to see people perform in a very high level, to see athletes perform at their best," Honnold said in a conversation with legendary surfer Kelly Slater, with surfing also being added to the Olympic programme. "I just want to see people have a great performance. I think that's really why I like the Olympics - because it brings out the best performances from people."

MORE: Alex Honnold on the Olympic Channel podcast - Tokyo 2020

Honnold spoke with Slater as part of a series of content pieces with Olympics.com. Below, you can find that collection in full, which includes:

  • Honnold in conversation with fellow adventure climber Tommy Caldwell about sport climbing being added to the Olympics and what it means for the popular recreation sport and activity - plus much more.
  • Honnold guest interviewing Olympic gold medallist Janja Garnbret after the Slovenian made history by winning the sport's Games debut.
  • Honnold giving insight and expertise to both the men's combined and women's combined sport climbing lead finals.
  • Plus, Alex and partner Sanni McCandless Honnold discussing a healthy outdoor lifestyle, how climbing is evolving and how they tend to their everyday wellness; Honnold's advice for beginners who want to get into the sport; and much more

What's next for Honnold? His own podcast - Climbing Gold - is in its second season, as it explores a variety of topics surrounding the sport - and beyond.

Alex Honnold with Janja Garnbret

Alex Honnold in conversation with fellow climber Tommy Caldwell

Alex Honnold gives insights, perspectives on women's lead climbing final

With pop-in special guest, Adam Ondra!

Alex Honnold on men's lead final

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