/ Training to improve my locking off when my shoulder's not used

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SuperstarDJ - on 24 Dec 2013
I've got plenty of climbing weaknesses but at the moment I'm struggling with indoor bouldering routes where I need to lock off with one arm, either low down by my waist or higher and away from my body. I'm guessing my bicep/triceps are doing most of the work (certainly my biceps twinge a little), along with my core. My shoulders don't seem to be engaged at these angles or positions.

Had anyone got any idea of exercises I could do to improve this? Either at the gym, with a fingerboard or at the wall.

I'm climbing stuff at 5b-6a at Nottingham climbing centre (so maybe 6a+ or V3?).

Thanks!

David
Arms Cliff - on 24 Dec 2013
In reply to SuperstarDJ:

Keep trying problems with the sort of moves you are struggling on, this will be the fastest and best way to improve on those specific weaknesses.
Kevin Woods - on 24 Dec 2013
In reply to SuperstarDJ:
If you're locking off so far, maybe you're trying to do moves static that would be more efficient done dynamically? Put a bit of momentum behind your movement to grab a split second extra to get the next hold.
Post edited at 12:31
1poundSOCKS - on 24 Dec 2013
In reply to SuperstarDJ: Try problems that involve lock-offs, but ones that are a bit easier for you. When you lock-off and move to the next hold, don't grab the next hold immediately, hover your hand over it for 2-3 seconds.

Simos on 24 Dec 2013
In reply to SuperstarDJ:

I doubt it's a question of strength but even if it is, you will naturally get stronger by climbing. You can try overhangs with big holds.

My guess is that you are not as relaxed as you should be and you are trying to hold your body weight with your arms. Trying to relax the arms and try and twist by keeping them straight, hopefully you'll feel your shoulders working too and also your core.

Is your footwork right? It would be the number one thing to check along with your body position before assuming it has to do with lack of strength. Can be impossible to hold some lock offs if your body is doing the wrong thing.

You could also try climbing frontal on an inclined wall for strength - good for stabilising the shoulder in open positions.

I guess for lock off strength you could try negative reps on one-arm pull ups. If you can't do it you can try having the other hand holding onto a rope lower down, if that makes sense?

You could just campusing up juggy routes too...
SuperstarDJ - on 25 Dec 2013
In reply to SuperstarDJ:

Thanks everyone for the ideas. Plenty to try!
Simos on 25 Dec 2013
In reply to SuperstarDJ:

I would also echo what Kevin said above about momentum, i've found some problems nearly impossible to do statically but add a bit of momentum and dynamic movement and they become 10 times easier
Kevin Woods - on 25 Dec 2013
In reply to SuperstarDJ:

And one more about momentum, you could doing something wrong if you need to lock off so far up to your waist at the grades you stated. Momentum is the big one, and turning your body through the move to maintain a straight arm will also help.
Simos on 25 Dec 2013
In reply to SuperstarDJ:
Just had another idea to build up perfect lock-off strength: take a heavy toddler for a long xmas-day walk in the countryside, making sure he has a complete meltdown halfway through and refuse to go in the pushchair and then carry him for miles in your arms back home. Make sure he makes absolutely no effort to hold onto you as you carry him.
Post edited at 14:18
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Simos on 28 Dec 2013
In reply to SuperstarDJ:

Some more exercises for lockoffs here: http://mikedoyle.ca/climbing/coachingdoc_3.shtml

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