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  1. #1
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    Has the Training Trend Peaked?

    Anecdotally, it seems like training is all the rage in climbing these days. Everyone is reading books, taking classes, and doing all kinds of workouts. I get it at a certain level of ability, or breaking through a plateau you've been at for a while.

    But now it's down to this: https://rockandice.com/rock-climbing...imbing-harder/

    Training exercises aimed to get your gym climbing from 5.9 to 5.10....I always thought the trick was just to climb for longer than a month. Has the fad peaked or is this the new norm?
    It sucks to suck.

  2. #2
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    Training is a more efficient use of time than just going out and climbing (or skiing, or whatever), and people seem to lead increasingly time-constrained lives, so I think it's grown out of that.

    You'll improve faster in nearly any sport if you start as a rank amateur with an incredibly solid, well rounded fitness base that you continue to maintain while learning a new sport, than if you approached a new sport in modest shape, and simply focused all of your energy on practicing the sport itself.
    Doesn't mean that much to me, to mean that much to you.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by glademaster View Post
    Training is a more efficient use of time than just going out and climbing (or skiing, or whatever), and people seem to lead increasingly time-constrained lives, so I think it's grown out of that.

    You'll improve faster in nearly any sport if you start as a rank amateur with an incredibly solid, well rounded fitness base that you continue to maintain while learning a new sport, than if you approached a new sport in modest shape, and simply focused all of your energy on practicing the sport itself.
    This isn't wrong per se, but:

    -It's far less applicable to climbing since in climbing technique>>fitness.
    -The link in the OP is undeniably pointless filler copy with no real need to exist.

  4. #4
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    Has the Training Trend Peaked?

    Quote Originally Posted by glademaster View Post
    Training is a more efficient use of time than just going out and climbing (or skiing, or whatever), and people seem to lead increasingly time-constrained lives, so I think it's grown out of that.

    You'll improve faster in nearly any sport if you start as a rank amateur with an incredibly solid, well rounded fitness base that you continue to maintain while learning a new sport, than if you approached a new sport in modest shape, and simply focused all of your energy on practicing the sport itself.
    Bullshit.

    It’s a skill based sport and until you’re “elite” climbing should be the majority of your “training.”

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by glademaster View Post
    You'll improve faster in nearly any sport if you start as a rank amateur with an incredibly solid, well rounded fitness base that you continue to maintain while learning a new sport, than if you approached a new sport in modest shape, and simply focused all of your energy on practicing the sport itself.
    That can apply to some sports, but climbing simply isn't one of them. Especially at the grades they're talking about.
    It sucks to suck.

  6. #6
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    I remember the Topher Donnahue quote, "Real 5.10 will always be hard"

    http://www.alpinist.com/doc/ALP24/es...topher-donahue

    But yeah, climbing 5.10 in the gym pretty much just requires climbing a bit. Stupid article.
    "Alpine rock and steep, deep powder are what I seek, and I will always find solace there." - Bean Bowers

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    when I saw “go from 5.9 to 5.10”, I assumed the article was satire.


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  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dantheman View Post
    This isn't wrong per se, but:

    -It's far less applicable to climbing since in climbing technique>>fitness.
    -The link in the OP is undeniably pointless filler copy with no real need to exist.
    Disagree with your fist point entirely. When you start it's all about technique and fitness can lag far behind without being an issue. You'd get more benefit from losing 5 lbs than doing anything else...
    Once you get into the mid 5.12 range though no amount of technique is going to compensate for lack of fitness. Without strong fingers and a combo of endurance and power you either can' stick the moves or gas out after 3 of them. There's a reason the level has skyrocketed in the past few years and it's 90% due to the introduction of structured training. There's probably two dozen people at the top of the game right now and they all train like beasts. Sharma was a freak of nature who got to where he was by climbing only. The others are extremely gifted and train all the time.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Boissal View Post
    Disagree with your fist point entirely. When you start it's all about technique and fitness can lag far behind without being an issue. You'd get more benefit from losing 5 lbs than doing anything else...
    Once you get into the mid 5.12 range though no amount of technique is going to compensate for lack of fitness. Without strong fingers and a combo of endurance and power you either can' stick the moves or gas out after 3 of them. There's a reason the level has skyrocketed in the past few years and it's 90% due to the introduction of structured training. There's probably two dozen people at the top of the game right now and they all train like beasts. Sharma was a freak of nature who got to where he was by climbing only. The others are extremely gifted and train all the time.
    Glade's post was about amateurs, which is what I was addressing and you seem to agree with wholeheartedly.

  11. #11
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    i think some people here continually underestimate the asymmetry between desire to read about an activity interest in participating in an activity and opportunity to participate in said activity.

    Quote Originally Posted by Boissal View Post
    Sharma was a freak of nature who got to where he was by climbing only.
    and he could only climb because he had really easy access to a climbing gym when he was starting out.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dantheman View Post
    Glade's post was about amateurs, which is what I was addressing and you seem to agree with wholeheartedly.
    Yep, I wasn't entirely clear if your point was more general though. For the causal climber, I thing we're all in agreement. Better footwork and more headspace will do a lot for than a weekly hangboard workout (which will probably also lead to injury).
    I'm climbing stringer now after barely setting foot in the gym over the winter than I was at the end of a summer/fall of doing nothing but climbing. I'm almost 10 lbs lighter from touring a shitload.

  13. #13
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    Amateurs and new climbers can certainly benefit from having a hangboard to work out on, and also stretching to increase flexibility. I remember Rock and Ice had an article about stretching that I clipped out and did those stretches for years and that really helped my climbing improve. Suddenly I could easily high step through moves I used to have to power through, and that preserved a lot of arm strength and upper body strength.

    But yeah, nothing can replace pure mileage on the rock IMO when you are starting out. Toproping vertical or overhanging routes until your forearms are inflated with lactic acid and you literally watch your fingers open up and let go of a huge jug. For me it was always tough to get that same pump in the gym because I just wasn't as motivated to hang on as I was on a real climb. Climbing gyms are super boring I think.

    Edit: I never got injured using a hangboard, but I also didn't try to do pullups on the tweaky small holds. Other than straight pullups on the jug holds, I usually put a chair out in front of me while I trained on the board, to mimic my feet underneath me as on an overhanging climb. Takes a lot of weight off your fingers and lets you really get pumped. Again, though, really boring.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by yeahman View Post
    Climbing gyms are super boring I think.
    That's relative. Try spending any decent amount of time on a spin bike or treadmill (I don't, because I'd rather stab myself in the eye).

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dantheman View Post
    That's relative. Try spending any decent amount of time on a spin bike or treadmill (I don't, because I'd rather stab myself in the eye).
    Ha, true, climbing gyms are more fun than that stuff for sure.

  16. #16
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    Opinions are like assholes...
    Doesn't mean that much to me, to mean that much to you.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by yeahman View Post
    Ha, true, climbing gyms are more fun than that stuff for sure.
    i just left my gym. there were about 15 people bouldering, a few really cute girls, and a couple of v10 crusher / setters that i could learn a lot from. everyone was cheering for each other to pull as hard as possible on the plastic in french, spanish, and english. it was really fun, and that’s a pretty typical night. i don’t really drink at bars anymore and would take that over shoveling money at a bar tender any day. or if i wasn’t taken, i’d be there looking for someone to move into a van with me. but if you have goals to climb hard stuff in a short window like in quebec it’s a necessity, and it’s hard to say training jumped the shark when you look at adam or margo. they spend so much time training indoors and no one has ever been better.
    .....I hope you know that this will go down on your permanent record

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  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by yeahman View Post
    Amateurs and new climbers can certainly benefit from having a hangboard to work out on, and also stretching to increase flexibility. I remember Rock and Ice had an article about stretching that I clipped out and did those stretches for years and that really helped my climbing improve. Suddenly I could easily high step through moves I used to have to power through, and that preserved a lot of arm strength and upper body strength.

    But yeah, nothing can replace pure mileage on the rock IMO when you are starting out. Toproping vertical or overhanging routes until your forearms are inflated with lactic acid and you literally watch your fingers open up and let go of a huge jug. For me it was always tough to get that same pump in the gym because I just wasn't as motivated to hang on as I was on a real climb. Climbing gyms are super boring I think.

    Edit: I never got injured using a hangboard, but I also didn't try to do pullups on the tweaky small holds. Other than straight pullups on the jug holds, I usually put a chair out in front of me while I trained on the board, to mimic my feet underneath me as on an overhanging climb. Takes a lot of weight off your fingers and lets you really get pumped. Again, though, really boring.
    "Getting pumped" isn't an effective training strategy.

  19. #19
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    I dunno, seemed to build endurance for me. I was obviously never very scientific about it.

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by concretejungle View Post
    "Getting pumped" isn't an effective training strategy.
    Yes, it is. It's called arc training.

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by yeahman View Post
    Amateurs and new climbers can certainly benefit from having a hangboard to work out on, and also stretching to increase flexibility. I remember Rock and Ice had an article about stretching that I clipped out and did those stretches for years and that really helped my climbing improve. Suddenly I could easily high step through moves I used to have to power through, and that preserved a lot of arm strength and upper body strength.

    But yeah, nothing can replace pure mileage on the rock IMO when you are starting out. Toproping vertical or overhanging routes until your forearms are inflated with lactic acid and you literally watch your fingers open up and let go of a huge jug. For me it was always tough to get that same pump in the gym because I just wasn't as motivated to hang on as I was on a real climb. Climbing gyms are super boring I think.

    Edit: I never got injured using a hangboard, but I also didn't try to do pullups on the tweaky small holds. Other than straight pullups on the jug holds, I usually put a chair out in front of me while I trained on the board, to mimic my feet underneath me as on an overhanging climb. Takes a lot of weight off your fingers and lets you really get pumped. Again, though, really boring.
    Quote Originally Posted by zartagen View Post
    Yes, it is. It's called arc training.
    That sounds like ARC training? ARC is a light pump and is generally a couple number grades below your onsight level.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by concretejungle View Post
    That sounds like ARC training? ARC is a light pump and is generally a couple number grades below your onsight level.
    Whoops, I didn't read what you quoted. Yeah, ARC is a sustained light pump. Getting ultra pumped and thrashed just starves your forearm muscles of blood. I tend to get some sort of compartment syndrome that fucks up my arms if I don't sufficiently ARC and climb a pumpy route(s).

  23. #23
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    Working your muscles by climbing to fatigue and/or failure...I guess I considered that "pumped" but you're right it's not the same as getting flash pumped, which is counter productive. IN any case the only point I'm making is that, for me, climbing outside a ton as a beginner, always trying to finish the day by toproping something that would really work me, as well as projecting overhanging routes on lead that were a couple letter grades above my ability...those were the things that got me stronger and progressing through the grades, without climbing inside much or having any real training regimen. I plateaued in the mid-5.12 range for redpointing sport climbs, and 5.11+ for leading trad climbs, which I was pretty happy with. If I'd wanted to progress into 5.13 I would have needed to do more specific training, but it wasn't worth it to me. I have no beef with climbing gyms, it's just not my scene. I mean they hardly even existed when I started climbing.

  24. #24
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    climbing gyms are a where as much as a when. that was my point about Sharma - kid was 12/13 when a good gym with good climbers and relatively cheap membership opened up within bike range of his house. bike to the climbing gym every day after school and you can get good. and he did - quick. he kicked ass at the gym not before long, and they encouraged him. it's place + people.

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