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u/KTanenr · 1 pointr/climbharder

As far as improving your headgame goes, leading easy but long runouts is super helpful, as well as falling onto (well-placed) gear. Alpine multipitch is an admirable goal, but it is a far cry from what most people think of as trad climbing. You should be confident on long runouts, with potential no-fall zones. There are a lot of skills that are important for alpine climbing that often are not learned in a typical trad climbing mentor relationship, such as self-rescue, alpine route finding, and depending on your goals, snow climbing skills. There are several ways to learn these skills such as books or hiring a guide. Ultimately, your safety is much more dependent on yourself when alpine climbing. I say this not to scare you away from alpine climbing, as it has been responsible for some of the most amazing memories I have, but it has also been responsible for some of the scariest.

Some books that you might find beneficial:

Climbing Self-Rescue - Just what it says in the title.

Vertical Mind - I found this book useful for improving my head space.

Training for the New Alpinism - Probably the best book to help a climber transition into the backcountry.

[Mountaineering: The Freedom of the Hills] ( - This book is excellent, but probably isn't extremely helpful until you are climbing more serious alpine routes.

As far as advice, just get as much mileage on lead outdoors as you can, with 1-2 indoor bouldering sessions per week. If it doesn't impact your bouldering, you could add a couple strength sessions as well. If you want to get into alpine climbing, or even just multipitch climbing, practice your systems at the top of single pitch routes. Belay your partner from the top, practice building an anchor at the top off of the bolts, set up simple pulley systems. Just spending 15 minutes per session will help you get muscle memory down for when it really matters.

Edit: As you get into more alpine climbing, you should increase the strength training and cardio. Climbing efficiently after four hours walking with a pack full of gear and food is harder than it sounds. Increasing your physical strength will reduce the mental load a lot, allowing you to think more clearly and be more confident.

u/eshlow · 2 pointsr/climbharder

>I have also read that in some tests, climbers on average don't actually have much greater hand strength (in grip tests) than the general population, which supports the theory they are relying on nonmuscular structures. (I wish I could find/provide a source for that...)

This is true. However, it's not really non-muscular structures so much as it is specific angle and muscle length neurological adaptation.

In general, isometric strength is different from dynamic strength like grip. For example, your crimping strength with full crimp, half crimp, and open crimp will be different depending on how much you practice each of these because of the specificity of strength at a particular joint angle. Isometric strength tends to be very specific to the angle (about 15-30 degrees IIRC) of the particular joints.

Obviously, climbers have much stronger connective tissue than your average person, but the hand positioning still needs to be supported by muscular strength in order to hold the hand and thus the body in a specific position.

It's not so much that a lack of or too much grip strength contributes to tendon injuries but of overuse of a specific hand positioning in regard to high amounts of stress to where you can't recover from it. For example, if you have A2, A3, or A4 type of injury, full and half crimp climbing will tend to aggravate them because of the specific positioning of the hand. However, things like slopers will generally be fine to climb without incident because of the lack of stress on the pulleys at the specific hand angles.

Thus, your 'grip' could be weak or strong relative to whatever you want... but you could still overuse the hand in a certain position and get injured. Obviously, being stronger will generally signify you probably have more adaptations to forces which means you are less likely to get injured. But that's only a generality. It's better to think of injuries in terms of 'weak links' which may have potential contributing factors from other places.

I hope that makes sense.

Source: wrote this book and am a physical therapist.

u/stoked_elephant · 7 pointsr/climbharder

This particular interview with Joe Rogan has been referenced below by /u/twintersx and I wanted to direct the question to you.

Obviously you said that low volume/high intensity training sessions have been beneficial to you, but in almost every other sport this isn't the case. Whether it be an endurance sport like cycling to short/high intensity bouts like wrestling or gymnastics (In both of these cases I agree that the "amount of time" as being short is relative, but albeit they are mostly anaerobic).

To summarize the interview (and perhaps butcher it) Firas Zahabi references training techniques used by the Russian Olympic Wrestling team where they do high volume low intensity workouts focused largely on technique. They then will increase intensity and decrease volume leading up to the competition. This seems to accomplish two things really well: it increases performance (apparently the Russian wrestling team is legendary), and decreases injury.

Another place that I've seen this type of training recommendation is within the book Training for the new alpinism where one of the authors describes his experience for improving his cycling performance through low volume/high intensity workouts. He ultimately realizes from personal experience that nothing can beat a firm solid "base" or "foundation" that includes a high amount of volume and low intensity, from which you can launch into more intense strength / power. Granted, in this book he is almost exclusively talking about endurance (both in the mountains and in cycling), but I can't help but feel an intuition that these folks are onto something...

From my own personal experience I largely have seen great gains in the short/high intensity sessions that you are describing. But despite all of my precautions / recovery / prehab I find myself getting injured and setting myself back from further gains.

I'd like to hear your thoughts!

u/tcmspark · 1 pointr/climbharder

Can I get some of you more experienced boulderers to cast your eyes over my new training plan?


I *finally* reached the end of a 12-week cut, having dropped 7.2kg. Now I plan to bump my calories back up to maintenance and take advantage of the extra energy and improved body composition.

I've been bouldering for ~2.5 years total, going 3x per week for the last 6 months. I mostly climb in the gym (V4/V6) but would like to get outdoors a bit more as the weather improves.

The Plan

I want to improve my skill and strength for bouldering. I'm going to continue climbing 3x a week but give each session a different focus as suggested in Steve Bechtel's book, Logical Progression. I also really enjoy lifting, so I'm going to follow Jim Wendler's 5/3/1 Building the Monolith, which is essentially the big four lifts with a few accessories – nothing too crazy. Finally, I'm going to add a hangboard session each week. I've never really trained on the hangboard, so I've picked a very simple beginners protocol to do once a week and see how it goes.

So my week will look like this:

Monday – Gym

5/3/1 Building the Monolith (BtM) squat and OHP

Tuesday – Climbing: strength endurance intervals

Climb 1 route at onsight level, rest 2 minutes. Repeat this 6 times then rest for 5 minutes. Then repeat the whole thing two more times.

Wednesday – Gym

5/3/1 BtM deadlift and bench

Thursday – Climbing: endurance intervals + hangboard

Lower intensity but more volume than Tuesday. Climb 1 route ~1-2 grades below onsight, rest one minute. Repeat this 12 times then rest for 5 minutes. Then repeat the whole thing two more times.

Hangboard protocol is 5s on 25s off, 10s on 20s off, 15s on 15s off. Repeat four times.

Friday – Gym

5/3/1 BtM squat and OHP

Saturday – Cardio

Ride my bicycle and relax!

Sunday – Climbing: limit bouldering

Four routes at 1-2 grades *above* onsight level, spending roughly 20 minutes on each.

u/ouroboros_eats_ass · 5 pointsr/climbharder

You could also consider Xian.

I haven't had a session with her but if I paid for coaching again in London I think it would be with her. Friends have had sessions with her learned tonnes.

I've had sessions with Louis and a number of the other Catalyst team and honestly the quality of the coaching really varies. Louis is great, I've climbed with him in London and on a week long trip to Sardinia, and I got some great insights from him both times. You could probably learn a bit from him. I was much more beginner when I went to him (around 1 year climbing at the time). But the real benefit from climbing is going to be regular exposure to the coach so you can continue to work on your weakpoints.

Also buy and read John Kettle's book. It's the best written resource on climbing technique I've found.

u/digitalsmear · 9 pointsr/climbharder

First things first: There is no magic bullet. Training well requires a multi-prong approach; commitment to a program - any program!(especially commitment to appropriate rest and supplemental exercise!), individual-specific nutrition, technique/skill building. These are all critical to discovering maximum potential.

That said, if you're only ever going to buy one climbing training book, make it this one: Climb Injury Free. Everything else is just icing. This is the most important thing a dedicated climber needs to add to their arsenal. Climbing stresses the body in a lot of really unusual ways and making sure you support the underutilized parts of your body, as well as the over-stressed ones, can make or break your progression. Fucking shoulders, man, take care of them.

An even deeper, though less sport specific, dive into taking care of your body is Becoming A Supple Leopard. Goofy title, best book.

That said, if you want to go further, there are plenty of options for delving deeper and no single book, or routine, is the end-all-be-all.

Rock Climbing Technique, by John Kettle - support your strength by being efficient. Quality movement also helps reduce your chance of injury.

Self-Coached Climber - helping you learn how to learn.

The Rock Climber's Training Manual - great routines and a really solid section on theory, so you can better understand the why's instead of just throwing you at a program. It's mostly geared toward

Big shoutout to the Training Beta Podcast as well. I've listened to the first 50 episodes so far and it's been an incredible learning experience that has taught me so much. If you want to dig in and get to the best information, I suggest you skip most of the interviews with pros (though they're all really interesting) and stick to the interviews with trainers and non-famous individuals who have done something really interesting. Favorites so far include the Anderson Brothers, Jared Vagey (Climb Injury Free author - he's done several episodes), John Kettle, Tom Randall, Steve Bechtel, Justin Sjong, Adam Macke, and Bill Ramsey.

I think I'm missing one that was heavily focused on training with minimal time, but these are a great place to get started.

u/ovincent · 2 pointsr/climbharder

Hard to say exactly what can help you specifically but you might want to pick up a comprehensive strength and body guide like becoming a Supple Leopard to instruct you in head-to-toe mobility and strength.

Personally, with similar issues and coming from a weightlifting background, I do a lot of the mobility exercises in that book using a spiked lacrosse ball or other torture devices. A lot of glute strengthening exercises and body weight movements such as L-sits or assisted levers help me to get my legs strong enough to actively move in extended/compromised positions.

u/RoyalTannenbaum · 6 pointsr/climbharder

I feel your pain. I'm 27M with the same issue. The only advice I have gotten from medical professionals has been to wear looser fitting shoes (ha). I found a pack of bunion pads on amazon that comes with multiple style pads but found that this style works best (

This isn't the brand that I have, I'll have to look that up later. having that little extra padding over the bunion allows me to wear tighter shoes without pain. I used to use finger tape to tape my big toe to the toe next to it as well as taping around my foot / bunion to act as a buffer. The special gel pads are a much better solution though. I can't climb comfortably without it now.

u/bjanaszek · 6 pointsr/climbharder

Yeah, grip strength is a great test. You can get a fairly inexpensive dynanometer that is easy to chuck in your climbing bag. I find it useful to judge whether it is worth trying to do any sort of limit work. If my grip strength seems enough below my baseline, I stick to volume, or even skip the workout altogether.

u/dr_grigore · 1 pointr/climbharder

Eva Lopez's blog has a lot of good resources. But she does caution the use of her methods and products to those with "2 years of systematic training" and some proven level of finger strength.

Given your minimal experience, common wisdom suggests just climbing routes as the best means to develop both strength and technique. On that front, the Self Coached Climber spells out climbing movement.

When your ready, check out Mike and Mark Anderson's new site. These are the "rockprodigy" guys.

u/owensum · 56 pointsr/climbharder

Ok, I'll be the first.. Obviously you need to devote a large amount of your training to learning skill and technique. The new-ish John Kettle book is mentioned regularly on this sub and I can vouch for it—it's a no-nonsense list of highly effective technique drills and accompanying videos. Kris Hampton of the Power Company climbing has a series of movement skill youtube videos. Practice practice practice. Try and find someone with better skills that you can climb with and learn from. You have a head start with your strength, now you've gotta relax that grip and learn how to use your feet and hips and engage body tension.


As far as synovitis goes, that sucks. There's advice on this sub which you can search for. Crimp avoidance is almost mandatory, taping can help, as can finger curls for some ppl. Progressive loading on the hangboard is a good idea.

u/SoundSunspotWestern · 17 pointsr/climbharder

My advice is that most of us are climbing to live, not living to climb.

Steve Bechtel and Charlie Manganiello of ClimbStrong both advocate cutting down on cardio to truly hit your climbing peak, both of them ski and run, and have put plenty of thought into progressing while being a multi-sport athlete.

It also depends on your current goals. Trying to cut weight? eating right and engaging in some mild cardio can help. Trying to climb long trad routes and be a mountaineer? Buddy there's a whole massive debate about how to become the most insane cardio machine possible.

You should do the thing you feel is most rewarding. I tend to cycle in and out of climbing-heavy and running-heavy periods of my life because they both make me happy. Am I the strongest at either that I could be? Definitely not.

u/byoh9 · 1 pointr/climbharder®-Patented-Exerciser-Strengthener-Enforcement/dp/B075RRHWYZ/ref=lp_8128373011_1_4_a_it?srs=8128373011&ie=UTF8&qid=1526699574&sr=8-4

These things are the shit man. you can do it just while your sitting on the couch watching tv or whatever which is whats nice. I have my elbow at 90 degrees so my finger point toward the ceiling. try to start so your wrist is somewhat flopped back. palm more toward ceiling. as you pull your fingers back your wrist will want to straighten up. try to keep it on somewhat of a tilt and really pull with your finger through the full rep. i do anywhere from 3-4 sets 15-25 reps hold for 3 seconds at top. still pulling as if you want to pull it back even further. last rep i hold for ten seconds. I believe it does have a bit more effect on the outside of the elbow but it should help you stay balanced and increase overall elbow health. keep it with the hammer type thing but i agree with the other guys on the pvc or other apparatus'

u/JIMMYJOHNS4LIFE · 2 pointsr/climbharder

> Why isn't climbing the best training for climbing?

You get stronger at a particular workout by incrementally increasing the intensity/weight/volume of the workout. This is also known as "progressive overload." The reason why "just climbing" isn't the best training for climbing is because it tends to be too sporadic and varied to guarantee consistent progressive overload. That's why you see a lot of people on these subreddits doing things like hangboarding and weight lifting because the intensity/weight/volume is easily quantifiable, making progressive overload possible.

In Steve Bechtel's new book, Logical Progression, he suggests a few ways of quantifying your climbing sessions so that you can increase the intensity of them from session to session in such a way that you improve your strength, strength endurance, or endurance. Check it out for some good tips.

u/justinsimoni · 3 pointsr/climbharder

I would sincerely suggest reading one of the Steve House books, either the OG Alpinism one, or the one that just came out. I'd be curious to know if r/Ih8usernam3s is a sports scientist, a coach, or currently an athlete (care to enlighten us?). There's no shortcuts to gaining the fitness you need for alpine missions.

If you want to get fast, you want to get efficient: lots of workouts below your aerobic threshold. My resting HR can be in the low 40's - it certainly didn't get there by doing, "Interval Training", whatever that's supposed to be (seems a nebular term).

u/vikasagartha · 1 pointr/climbharder

There's this u/eshlow chap who hangs here. He wrote this awesome book called overcoming gravity about gymnastic training. I've found gymnastic training quite beneficial for climbing, overall strength, and injury prevention. There's a dedicated sub --> r/overcominggravity. There's really good progressions + programming for creating a routine.

u/prox_ · 2 pointsr/climbharder

Great book: "Performance Rock Climbing" by Dale Goddard & Udo Neumann

"Handbook for experienced climbers covers all the physical and psychological aspects of climbing training."

Bonus: Udo Neumann Interview Excerpt. A really nice guy.

u/jbnj451 · 1 pointr/climbharder

6 months? Are you still on your first pair of shoes? You might need shoes with a little better edging to keep from popping off those tiny holds. Also, The Self-Coached Climber has some great drills for learning good footwork (you can find most of the videos on youtube by searching "self-coached climber").

u/turbomellow · 6 pointsr/climbharder

Not exactly answering your question, but I'm going to highly recommend Training For the New Alpinism, which can help you formulate an effective workout plan for your trip.

Anecdotally, I've lifted and climbed on the same day because alternate days would never allow recovery. Usually I'd lift weak and (try to) climb hard. Mountaineering prioritizes functional fitness over "glamour."

u/mennatm · 5 pointsr/climbharder

I recently came back from a pulley injury. The best thing I could have done was taken a month off. It sucked at the time, but here I am three and a half months out and my finger feels great.

here are a few of the resources I used to help with my recovery:


Tendon/Pulley injury w/ Esther Smith and Dan Mirsky -- The video includes some good exercises to regain mobility in your finger

A2 Pulley Injuries in Rock Climbing -- The recovery chart at the bottom really helped me

some products that also helped:

Grip Strength Training Kit

Finger Massager

Therapy Putty

Edit: I used all this stuff after my injury, and within 8 weeks after the injury I was off of jugs and back to crimps.

u/4sritwoone · 2 pointsr/climbharder

I highly recommend you get this checked out by a doctor or climbing physio.

I felt this exact sensation of my forearm painlessly "separating" from my hand on several different kinds of holds (slopers, holding myself into an overhung wall using a pinch were the two most notable).

I had already been neglecting some level of wrist pain when twisting my wrist in either direction for a couple of months at that point and even once I started feeling this weird sensation I kept climbing for a few more weeks until the pain became unbearable. Finally got it checked out by a hand specialist and it turned out that I had a torn tfcc and ecu tendon subsheath resulting in ecu tendon subluxation. It took me more than 7 months of no climbing or any other exercise using my wrist until I could climb pain free.

Definitely don't do what I did. Stop climbing/working out until you get it looked at by a professional and hear what they have to say.

edit: if that isn't an option or you don't want to do this for whatever reason you could try using this:

it's what my hand doctor recommended I wear when recovering and it should help with subluxation assuming that's the cause of the separation you're feeling

u/Kewnerrr · 1 pointr/climbharder

Cool, I'll try to read both Bechtel articles this evening and try to construct some kind of a routine after that. Of course I still might return to this thread with new questions, but these articles really seem to be a goldmine of information.

I heard about the campus board being a dangerous one, so I kept my distance so far. I'll look up the Simple & Sinister program; I've been looking for such 'supplementary' programs and also read some good things about Tactical Barbell, although I'm not sure whether many climbers have tried it out yet (I think someone on this Reddit metioned it though, using the 'Fighter Template' from the book).

Thanks for all the help, I really appreciate it.

u/wavepad4 · 2 pointsr/climbharder

You've been bouldering for 6 years so obviously you're experienced, but since everyone seems to be focused on strength, maybe it's technique? Or it could be something else entirely.

This might not be your cup of tea but, if you're desperate, 9 out of 10 outlines a number of hangups (non-strength related) that get in the way of progressing and breaking that plateau.

u/mtbLUL · 2 pointsr/climbharder

Hey! I got the MRI for a suspected tfcc tear as well but it came back negative. That said, my hand specialist still thinks theres a problem with it. It might just be instable without a tear. I recommend doing rice bucket exercise, and also the hammer one helped me I think. You grab a hammer by the handle and rotate it slowly to reinforce your wrist.

Good luck and if you find out its something else please let me know what it is !

I also wear this all the time

u/FireClimbing · 2 pointsr/climbharder

It sounds like you would be better suited to a non linear program, as you can continue to climb outdoors and get stronger/better as well.

u/bryan2384 · 4 pointsr/climbharder

I follow Steve Bechtel's nonlinear periodization.

Logical Progression: Using Nonlinear Periodization for Year-Round Climbing Performance

It's basically a system that is less strict (if you miss a sessions you just pick up where you left off), doesn't use blocks, and is better for someone who doesn't have a "sending season" (I live in Miami so my season is whenever I make it outside, which could be any time in the year). He also has specific example of what each day should look like, etc. Just a thought. I know this doesnt answer your question directly, but I highly recommend Bechtel's teachings.

u/YellowFever47 · 1 pointr/climbharder

I keep seeing that book pop up all over the place. I am going to buy it soon, once the financial stress of Christmas passes. I also saw another book, ["9 out of 10 Climbers Make the Same Mistakes"] ( At the gym, I notice that my contact strength is probably the least developed. I almost always fall off or get stumped on a project due to a lack of finger strength. I'm gonna start ARCing more and figuring out how to use a fingerboard properly
Thanks for the advice!

u/pedros997 · 2 pointsr/climbharder

Gresham mentioned training forearm extensors to prevent elbow tendinitis and made a hand opening motion. Is he talking about this sort of device?


Do people use these? Does this warrant its own thread?


Edit: Here's a link to where he said it

u/ThomasVega · 2 pointsr/climbharder

Udo Neumann and Dale Goddard cover this in Performance Rock Climbing (chapters Flexibility and Flexibility Training).

The chapters are included in the Amazon preview here:

(It's quite an old book, so I'm not sure if there are new insights already)

u/amalec · 1 pointr/climbharder

Definitely loading pin is the easiest approach. I use

but there are cheaper options out there.

You can also girth hitch.

u/tyrannis · 2 pointsr/climbharder

Check out The Self Coached Climber. In the first part, the book focuses on movement, including ideas behind moving efficiently, being aware of your body position and how you initiate moves, and a bunch of drills for foot placement and techniques such as flagging. The second part has some training exercises and ideas for structured programs. It's highly acclaimed and I got a lot out of it.

u/IFoundItThatWay · 1 pointr/climbharder

I ordered this one, since I had a bunch of 1"-hole plates already:
I'm 6'1", and I usually get the weights 5-6" off the ground on the pinch. 10" should be fine.