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Topic - Coaching advice for a confident VS leader

dr_botnik - on 31 Oct 2012
I have been climbing for about 10 years, with lots of gaps as life has got in the way. For the past 18 months I've really dedicated my time to the sport (mostly due to an indoor wall being built in my hometown and allowing me to train weekly) and have pushed my grade, both indoor and out.

I tend to climb F6a indoors, and have led several HVS's (including Goliath's Groove) however often feel frustrated at not pushing myself outside. I often feel I am capable of climbing harder than VS, but when I do try, I find myself second guessing decent gear placements and failing to really commit, or conversely running the tank to empty fiddling gear on sustained routes and having to then rest. Also I love to boulder, but the majority of problems are just out my price range at Font 6 and above.

Would people either recommend:

a) Doing an SPA course, as this will help improve my ropework/make me a safer climber, but will the instructor have anytime to focus on my climbing technique? And is this really the best way I could improve myself for my hobby, when I'm not really wanting to pursue the qualification for a career?

b) Hiring a professional coach for a session(s), bearing in mind I would prefer coaching on real rock and this will probably make this option quite expensive and logistically difficult (just doing a quick search and a 5 day course at Plas Y Brenin is 725, phew)

c) Just carry on climbing with slightly more experienced partners and training until my grade improves slightly and technique coaching becomes a more worthwhile prospect aka MTFU.

d) Something I'm missing?

My overall goal has been UK Tech 6a, but I'm currently lacking any mileage at 5b and 5c just seems to shut me down on lead. Maybe its just a case that the grass is always greener on the other side, but I'd really like to climb some sea cliffs, or travel somewhere beautiful like kalymnos or the verdon and I can't help but feel I need to improve a bit to get the most out of those venues.

Thanks for reading, and thanks in advance for any tidbits of advice, tips, or sage wisdom the UKC community has to offer, Rob.
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