/ NEW ARTICLE: Training to Become a Better Climber - Part 5
With a specific training plan, technique tips and detailed coaching, this article series has all you need to know to become a better climber.
Read more at http://www.ukclimbing.com/articles/page.php?id=4565
Rumour has it drinking red wine is a new training technique. Do you have any advice on this..?
Note to the Ed, Robz as ticked 8c now, though I think this was before the alcoholism.
Lots of common sense mixed with a few ideas I hadn't thought of. Cheers UKC.
Liked the goal setting section in particular as the starting grades are similar to mine.
Especially the boulder grade targets - so v7 (from v5) by july, which seems possible although for sure a stretch.
But then v9 could take another 5 years with v11 being the dream alongside f8c! I don't disagree , but more mouth agape at the realisation that beyond v7 is very hard going.
To be honest I have never even thought beyond v7 and f7c which is why I like the goals part. Made me think.
Nice article and very detailed. Thanks.
The one thing that I don't think is covered is the long-term aspect of form and fitness. The problem with training at this level is that as you approach the higher grades, often even just maintaining your existing fitness can be time-consuming.
So I think it's worth mentioning the the concept of the "come-back". For most people, 'real-life' will get in the way at some point, which makes a serious dent into fitness and thus progression towards goals. The trick is to not get demotivated at the corresponding loss of fitness, because I find that getting back to your previous level is usually much quicker and easier than breaking new ground.
Robbie, I hoped to hear your take on the usefulness of powerscreaming (If I have learnt one thing from you, it is how to bring the whole of Ratho to a halt with blood-curdling yells). Is this a technique you would recommend and, if so, above what grade is it acceptable and not just embarrassing?
Interesting that while the article says "applies at E4+" there's no mention of trad goals in the whole thing. I don't doubt for a second that there are loads of trad routes that training like this will help - but (and note I'm operating at a slightly lower level) IME they're more the exception than the rule.
Put it this way, I trained all winter indoors, and made measurable progress in the wall in both aerobic fitness and PE, and over the winter I climbed my hardest boulder problems (and without sieging). But going back to doing trad, I reckon I'm worse than in the autumn (I'm climbing mainly on grit and I basically think that it's an ungradable esoteric little corner of the sport when viewed in the context of progression and training). Maybe the training will help when I'm back to pulling on holds on limestone and sea cliffs?
Do authors sometimes gloss over the fact that while structured training may apply very effectively to sport and bouldering, you can do as much training as you like and still be sh!t at trad?
Sounds a bit extreme - isn't E4 normally about f6c/+ ?
So maybe onsighting 7a/+ would be about average for a regular E4 leader?
The whole trad/sport thing is just difficult to convert. Say your highest sport onsight is 6c+/7a; if you're a very good trad climber (quick at placing gear, cool head) then you can climb E4 or even E5. But if you're not so experienced at trad, then yes, you'd want to have some 'grades in hand'.
And even then, it's all bollox - sport grades are usually given to long bolted overhanging limestone routes, which have very little in common with e.g. delicate run-out grit slabs.
Clearly, the difference between a climber's max trad and sport grades will vary with the individual, and the smaller the gap, the better the trad climber in terms of trad skills. I was having a guess at the average sport-trad 'gap' - just a factual thing - rather than thinking about what a trad climber 'should' aspire to.
All this assuming a resonably well protected, pulling on holds kind of trad (say, Pembroke South style).
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