Joe Kinder: Rock Climber is Still Dedicated to the Sport Today

Image Credit: Joe Kinder/Instagram

It was back in 2018 when controversy struck the climbing community as one of their very own pro athletes, Joel “Joe” Kinder, was accused of cyber-bullying through Instagram to an extreme. Among his primary targets was apparently then-rising star Sasha DiGiulian, whose decision to stand up for herself is what ultimately led him to be outed before nearly everyone turned their backs on him. This much has actually even been indicated in HBO’s ‘Here to Climb,’ although his name was never explicitly mentioned so as to protect his privacy and avoid further public scrutiny of his being.

Joe Kinder Has Been Climbing Since He Was a Teen

While not many details regarding Joe’s early years are publicly available, we do know he was first introduced to the world of climbing at age 13 in Estes Park, Colorado, during a family vacation. However, it wasn’t until two years later that the New Hampshire resident truly recognized his innate skills as well as deep passion for the sport, following which he chose to pursue it in full force. This was when he began associating himself and learning from some of the biggest names in the industry, resulting in his own level quickly improving to such an extent he was able to turn pro at the age of 20.

Nevertheless, it’s imperative to note that while Joe was achieving wonders by traversing across the globe, free climbing some of the most incredible Big Walls, he was also attending college. In fact, it wasn’t until he’d graduated from Maine College of Art with a degree in painting that he devoted himself to the sport full-time and even relocated out west to hone his skills on new terrains. Then, whether it be China Beach in Rumney, Slaughterhouse-Five in Utah, Child of the Storm in Pawtuckaway, the Centaur in Boulder, or different walls in France, Germany, Spain, etc, he ascended them all.

Joe Kinder’s Cyber-Bullying Came to Light in 2018

According to records, Joe had created an Instagram account called Jetskijoyrider around 2010 with the primary aim of letting loose by making fun of other professional athletes in a dry, dark manner. He primarily used memes for this, amongst which were those that often commented negatively on then-young climber Sasha DiGiulian’s weight or overall appearance, making her deem it simply “malicious.” Therefore, following eight years of trolling and failed attempts to privately reach out to the admin, she publicly called him out without once mentioning his name so as to finally have some peace.

This did lead to Joe’s name being ousted, driving him to eventually take responsibility for his actions in an apology on social media itself: he penned, “I’ve always had a bit of a harsh sense of humor as I grew up a skater-kid punk. I’d rile my friends with pranks or nicknames… fast forward to my adult years, and I still enjoy joking and never taking ourselves too seriously but there’s a point when it’s too much. Bullying or harmful content is nothing I’d like to be connected to and I’m not proud to have offended people… I went overboard and would like to publicly apologize. Sasha, I’m sorry.” But alas, it was already too late.

Joe Kinder is Still Climbing

As a direct consequence of Joe’s actions, he was immediately dropped by both his sponsors — La Sportiva as well as Black Diamond — owing to their zero-tolerance for bullying and hate policies. Though since Sasha then emphatically came forward to make it clear she only wanted the internet trolling to stop and not for things to turn livelihood-threatening in this manner, he was able to survive. In fact, thanks to the private support of loved ones, Joe is now not just a professional climber who specializes in bouldering but also one of the best route developers — he is the one who has planned some of the hardest climb trails across the nation.

As for his personal standing, Joe is happily married to fellow climber plus designer-model Lindsey Tjian Kinder, with whom he shares a couple of adorable dogs as well as the Life of Villans apparel brand. They actually tied the knot on March 29, 2019, yet they’ve been together for over a decade despite their fair share of ups and downs, making it clear there’s no one and nothing that can ever come between them. However, we should mention that to this day, it appears as if Joe’s priority (apart from his family) is still rock climbing — he recently even made ascents to Death Of Villains in Hurricane, Utah, and Hueco Tanks in El Paso, Texas.

Read More: Sasha DiGiulian: Where is the Climber Now?