Industry Standards

Association for Challenge Course Technology - ACCT 
ACCT is a trade organization, serving Challenge Course Professionals all over the world. The purpose of the association is to promote the use of Challenge Courses and to set minimum standards for Challenge Course installation, operation and inspection. Originally founded by vendors, ACCT members are now predominantly Challenge Course managers and facilitators, in addition to the installers and trainers who are our longtime members. ACCT has been setting challenge course standards since 1993, and is now accredited by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) as a standards developer.

ACCT Mission Statement
The Association for Challenge Course Technology (ACCT) establishes and promotes the standard of care and measure of excellence that defines professional practice and effective challenge course programs. ACCT develops, refines and publishes standards for installing, maintaining and managing challenge courses, provides forums for education and professional development and advocates for the challenge course industry.

ACCT Vision Statement
The Association for Challenge Course Technology (ACCT) is recognized as the leading professional resource for those who create safe and effective challenge course programs that facilitate learning and positive change in individuals, groups and communities.

For general inquiries about ACCT, Standards book order, Membership, Annual Conference, Accounting, Purchase order questions, and other topics:

Phone: +1-847-325-5860
Fax: +1-847-325-5864
P. O. Box 47
Deerfield, IL 60015 USA

A challenge course is a series of individual and group, physical, social and emotional challenges that require a combination of teamwork, skills and individual commitment. Challenge courses are constructed outdoors using trees or utility poles and ropes, cables and wood. These courses may also be constructed indoors within an existing structure.

High elements require a person to climb higher than can be safely spotted from the ground and require a belay system to protect the participant. This includes indoor and outdoor climbing walls.
Low elements are non-belayed activities below shoulder height, which focus on a set goal within a supportive group environment. This includes indoor and outdoor bouldering walls. Low elements can be removable.

European Ropes Course Association – ERCA 
Our association includes european trainers, builders and inspectors of ropes courses as well as organizations working with temporary or stationary ropes courses. The board and teams represent the interests of all ERCA members and aim at developing ropes courses further. At least once a year a general meeting takes place offering the opportunity to set standards, to give the teams assignments, to define new teams and organize workshops and conferences dealing with our topics. Three elected members represent the board.

We update and optimize existing ERCA standards concerning construction, inspection and operation of ropes courses. We view ourselves as a basis for the exchange of ideas and for research. We represent and support our members.

Today there are already teams dealing with the following subjects:
• Safety research and prevention of accidents
• Material research
• Public relations
• Adventure Parks (October 2007)

ERCA Contact Information
European Ropes Course Association (ERCA)
The Association For The Promotion Of Ropes Courses e.V.
Verein zur Förderung von Ropes Courses e.V.
Klaus-Müller-Kilian-Weg 2
D-30167 Hannover

E-Mail: ERCA - Office (Geschäftsstelle)
Fon: +49-511-16989937
Fax: +49-721-151-372924

Professional Ropes Course Association – PRCA 
The mission of the PRCA is to develop user friendly standards, ropes challenge course documents, and to define, document and outline the construction / operational practices for the ropes challenge course and canopy tour industry. The documents of the PRCA will be used for course evaluations, insurance criteria, and professional development.

Further, for the purpose of inclusiveness, other industry standards have been reviewed and applicable portions have been adapted specifically for the use of the ropes challenge course industry; e.g. Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA), National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), American National Standards Institute (ANSI), Cordage Institute (CI). These standards are for educational use, construction resource for properly trained professionals, and to provide a venue for collaboration among challenge course practitioners.

The PRCA was created by ropes challenge course professionals for ropes challenge course professionals. It is a non-profit association comprised of a board of directors, peer reviewed vendors, organizational members, and individual members. Within the ropes challenge course industry, there has been a perceived need for an association and standards document that was reflective of a democratic process. To address this need and to strengthen the effectiveness of the PRCA standards, a solid representation within the ropes course industry was sought. By collaborating with other industry organizations and input of other industry leaders, a more inclusive situation has been achieved.

PRCA Contact Information
Professional Ropes Course Association {PRCA}
6260 E. Riverside Blvd.,#104
Rockford, IL 61111 USA
P - 815.986.7776 F - 815.637.2964
Website -