/ What do to when you think you might fall indoors

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Dandelion - on 20 Sep 2012
What do you think is the best thing to do, leading indoors, when you reach a move where you feel you might fall? Would you aim to climb down, rest on the rope, use other holds, or push it and fall? I'm wondering whether this last option, which I find most appealing being a bit keen in my odd way, is perhaps unwise if it gets me into dangerous habits for outdoors.
teh_mark - on 20 Sep 2012
In reply to Dandelion:

If you're not falling off when climbing sport or indoors, you're not trying hard enough! As long as you recognise the difference between falling onto a solid bolt with nothing below your feet and falling onto a dodgy nut 2m above an ankle-crunching ledge then you won't have a problem.
AJM - on 20 Sep 2012
In reply to Dandelion:

Personally I'd just go for it. Doing otherwise teaches your brain not to commit in safe situations, which can't be helpful in similarly safe situations outdoors.
Dandelion - on 20 Sep 2012
Right, that clears that up then. Nothing like hearing what you want to - thank you :)
Nille - on 20 Sep 2012
I agree with pushing it but only if you can fully trust your belayer. Whenever I climb with anyone other than my usual climbing partners I climb very conservatively until a few clip-drops sessions start to inspire confidence.
Jon Stewart - on 20 Sep 2012
In reply to Dandelion: The problem many climbers have - including me - is that when they think they're going to fall they down climb, sit on the rope, and whimper "TAKE" pathetically. What they should be doing is snatching for the next hold, and keeping going til they fall off. (This applies to sport and indoors, and only certain trad situations).

Learn how to do it now and it'll stand you in good stead.
I like climbing - on 21 Sep 2012
In reply to Dandelion:
It's safe indoors - always go for the move. Falling is good.
mightytigerds2000 - on 21 Sep 2012
In reply to Dandelion: I think learning to fall and being able to not be scared of falling is important, however i think it is also important to be able to down climb to a easier rest spot, shake out and then attempt the crux again. This is often necessary in trad and will do your stamina good
Panick - on 21 Sep 2012
In reply to Dandelion: Once I got into the mind set of climb until you fall off I really started to push my grade.
If you've got the energy to down climb you probably have the energy to make the next move...
Dandelion - on 21 Sep 2012
Thanks again. As for downclimbing - indoors that can be practiced on any route. I'm shocked at how bad I am at it and always intend to do more. It feels like a waste of energy, which is daft. I've already had to climb down about 3 or 4 moves on a V Diff I started where I couldn't find a gear placement, so I know it's something I need to do, but maybe doing it on some routes deliberately is better.
Wee Davie - on 21 Sep 2012
In reply to Dandelion:

I'm also guilty of shouting 'take' at times- mostly when I'm not 100% committed on a route.
However, the bottom line is, if you are trying your hardest you WILL fall off sometimes- 'If you're not flying you're not trying.'
Falling gives you confidence to push it in appropriate situations. It won't turn you into a suicidal maniac on trad.
jkarran - on 21 Sep 2012
In reply to Dandelion:

Depends what you're doing, what your objectives are:

Redpointing or attempting to flash something I'll push on. I usually call down to warn my belayer I'm flagging a bit.

If I'm working a route I'll climb down, use other holds, grab the quickdraw, slump on the rope, fall... whichever is easiest.

If I'm doing back to back routes for training then I'll occasionally cheat past stopper moves, it's the mileage I'm after anyway.

There's nothing wrong with learning to push on and risk a fall when it's safe to do so. If you have difficulty deciding when objectively how safe you really are then that's what I'd suggest you spend your time on rather than developing an aversion to climbing hard above your gear.

jk
silhouette - on 21 Sep 2012
In reply to I like climbing:
> It's safe indoors - always go for the move. Falling is good.

providing that is, that your belayer is not an idiot you've met on the internet.

MaranaF - on 24 Sep 2012
If you can't fall because you don't know if you can trust your belayer, you shouldn't be allowing that person to belay you!

You know, seeing someone gripping the wall, legs shaking, eyes wide in terror, fingers refusing to let go, is a regular sight at any gym or outdoor sports climb! The fear of falling is why most climbers don't progress beyond the most basic of grades.
Now saying that, I use skinny rope because it has less drag.I'm very conscious about the pressure points I am putting on my rope each time I fall. If I'm misreading a route and I'm feeling pumped then I take a rest, sit back and work out my moves before continuing. I don't throw myself off the hold or try to grab onto something that is way out of my technical ability. What is the point in that? Sometimes reading an entire high route from the ground is difficult and the only way we are going to learn and move forward in our dynamic ability is to understand what it is we are climbing and what moves are going to be necessary.
Falling may be fun for the confident and we should all be confident enough to fall or we will never improve our climbing, but falls do create rope stress, quick-draw stress and harness stress. I have taken some big falls and had to retire my rope because of it. There are many times outdoors when falling really isn't a safe option and actually that can be true indoors too. I was climbing at a very busy indoor gym on Sunday when I fell from a lengthy overhang that I was leading. As I came to a stop and was lowered the remaining couple of meters by my belayer, I was suddenly aware that a girl was backing up right into the space where I had just fallen. I told her that what she had just done was very dangerous and that I could of landed on top of her. It makes the hair stand up on the back of my neck just thinking about that.


Kieran_John - on 24 Sep 2012
In reply to silhouette:

I'm climbing with a new bunch of people tonight and I'll echo that. I've climbed a couple of times with them but they're fairly new to it, they seem nice and safe but I'm still a little nervous so find I don't really push myself as I do with my "regular" belayer.
MaranaF - on 24 Sep 2012
In reply to Kieran_John:

Stand back and watch them belaying each other. Only then can you decide who is safe to belay you and who isn't.
Jonny2vests - on 26 Sep 2012
In reply to DemolitionRed:

> The fear of falling is why most climbers don't progress beyond the most basic of grades.

I don't know about that. I think it just means you end up boxing below your weight.
mikekeswick - on 26 Sep 2012
In reply to Dandelion: Fear of falling has held me back for years. I could do the odd English 6c and pretty much every 6b I tried on top rope and yet I was liable to turn into a jibbering wreck on hvs when leading....
Falling indoors was never really a problem but translating that to falling on trad gear has been hard.
The process of learning how to fall safely and then embracing falling are massively important in climbing.
I'm finally starting to get my head around things but it's been a long road.
I would suggest you find out everything you can about falling and do it regularly - even as part of your warm everytime you climb.
Pekkie - on 26 Sep 2012
In reply to Dandelion:

A lot depends on the steepness. Most harder indoor routes are overhanging so you fall into space. If you're trying a vertical line at a grade near your limit then if you fall off you risk hitting holds on the way down. And on a hard vertical route the holds are often smaller and more rounded. It is a good idea to practise falling off on an overhanging route but watch out for climbers on adjoining routes and the wall management! I remember the climber who used to practise falling off from near the top with the top two bolts unclipped so as to 'get his head in gear'. It nearly gave the climbers on adjoining routes heart attacks.
Jonny2vests - on 26 Sep 2012
In reply to mikekeswick:
> (In reply to Dandelion) Fear of falling has held me back for years. I could do the odd English 6c and pretty much every 6b I tried on top rope and yet I was liable to turn into a jibbering wreck on hvs when leading....

Wow, English 6c to 5a - that is an impressive gap.

I've never been super keen at falling on trad gear, but if its say an E4 crack line, whats the biggy when you know you can place a mini top-rope whenever you like?
Jordon Fleming - on 27 Sep 2012
In reply to Dandelion: ur indoors and the clips are so close ! just have fun and have a laugh. if u fall u fall it dosnt matter. but if u dont go at somthing with the mind set ur going to do it then u just get nevous whenever u have a slight hint ur not going to make it. and its in a safe inviroment, and if u hit the floor u got a crap belay or its ur fault for falling whilst clipping
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Marc Germani on 27 Sep 2012
In reply to Dandelion:

of course to do your best to catch the next hold!!! do your best to improve better

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