Gravity Research’s Umeda branch for bouldering has one big advantage going for it. Located at the central axis of Osaka’s main transport hub, it’s very easy to reach and offers itself as an ideal after work climbing location. But how does the actual bouldering and facility itself hold up?
Integrated into the 5th floor of the high-end shopping mall Grand Front Osaka, this gym has a skyline view over Osaka’s busy working district. While not covering the largest area, it still has enough room to pack 5 separate bouldering wall sections, two dedicated system wall sections, and a small campus ladder. A rest area also incorporates warm-up / cool-down mats with core and stretching equipment. Changing rooms and lockers are also available.
Unfortunately, the gym’s location means it does get incredibly full on weekend and evenings, much more so than Gravity Research’s other locations in NAMBA and NAMBA-B. While the hall’s size would be okay on an empty day, during peak hours there’s hardly any space to climb, without feeling like you’re getting in the way or about to fall on someone. Additionally, I was dismayed to see that even after 3 months a lot of the basic boulders hadn’t been changed. While monthly circuits do exist, the basic problems hadn’t change, apart from even more polish and dirt. As such, unless no other option exists, I would recommend making a detour to any of the other locations in the city. Space, quality and crowds means there’s really no reason to stop by here unless you have to. Hop on the Midosuji line to Namba or take a detour to one of the other halls nearby like Climbing Space BOLD, City Rock Gym or Mush Rooming Bouldering.