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ARTICLE: Climbing Moves We Might See in the Paris 2024 Olympics - and How to Do Them

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Indoor climbing movement has evolved considerably over the last decade to become more dynamic and parcour-like. Even in the time since the Tokyo 2020 Olympics, some spectacular new moves have entered the World Cup circuit and trickled down to your local wall. 

We spoke to GB Climbing's Louise Flockhart, a Boulder specialist who is particularly adept at these new-school moves, to share her hints and tips. These skills may be found in any complex combination, but we've tried to isolate the individual moves (the hardest part was coming up with names to describe some of them...) to help you channel your inner Janja Garnbret.

Do you know your run-and-jump-double-clutch from your lâché-paddle-palm-down-dyno? 

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9
 ebdon 20:41 Tue
In reply to UKC Articles:

Boo, Down with this sort of thing! Bring back crimping the **** out of minging edges! 😉

In reply to UKC Articles:

Wot no jammin! How can Ondra beat the Japanese?

In reply to ebdon:

Indeed. A category to do this sort of thing with a full rack, harness, and belayer who won't short rope you would make for some entertaining watching!

In reply to David Bowler:

I think there will be a crack. I’m sure I read it somewhere. 

 philipivan 06:42 Wed
In reply to UKC Articles:

Would be fun to surprise the contestants and get the wideboyz to design the problems. 

1
In reply to philipivan:

> Would be fun to surprise the contestants and get the wideboyz to design the problems. 

I imagine they would be surprised if they were in any way reasonably reminiscent of and relatable to real climbing for the rest of us. It would actually be vaguely interesting to know whether that would significantly affect the results. 

8
 simes303 11:22 Wed
In reply to ebdon:

> Boo, Down with this sort of thing! Bring back crimping the **** out of minging edges! 😉

I agree. It's all getting a bit silly. 

 ebdon 11:51 Wed
In reply to simes303:

On the plus side, it means that all these awful young people getting into indoor climbing will never transition to outdoors due to the lack of double paddle laches at Stannage Plantation or whatever and leave me to blissful solitude failing to pull on minging crimps.

 Toerag 12:32 Wed
In reply to ebdon:

we need some hideous long blind mono to mono moves.  How about a shallow flared bomb-bay roof chimney you're continually falling out of?  Or disposable / breakable holds? Or a million crozzly holds where you have to try every single one to find the best, only to find they're all rubbish?  We need to see some whimpering and fear! Maybe space the bolts out a lot more further up the wall?

Oh, and a replica of the best sequence ever, the one starting at 2:13 and finishing 2:47. youtube.com/watch?v=F6Dp6wbkaF8&

In reply to ebdon:

I'm sure you are only joking, but I have seen a lot of young indoor climbers making the transition to real rock and being very very good, very quickly.

A few years ago a young indoor climber came sport climbing outside with us for the very first time and he redpointed 7c on his first day on real rock. A few years down the road, he has now climbed 8c and 8B+ and capable of more.

Alex Waterhouse and Billy Ridal, both coming from indoor comp backgrounds free climbed The Nose last year. Yes, they had experience climbing outside, but, certainly in the case of Billy, as I chatted to him last summer at the Tor before they went, hardly any trad lead experience and no big wall experience. What they did was pretty impressive. EDIT - A lot of that was possibly from their comp experience of trying hard day after day and not giving in.

Personally I want to see youngsters getting out and having the same or similar experiences I did as a teenager and then an adult.

CB.

Post edited at 12:36
1
In reply to ebdon:

> Bring back crimping the **** out of minging edges! 😉

Like this?

youtube.com/watch?v=K8a90MK-RW0&

CB.

In reply to Toerag:

> Or a million crozzly holds where you have to try every single one to find the best, only to find they're all rubbish?  

What about replicating that horrible conglomerate potato pulling style. Completely cover the wall. Almost all completely unusable with the just the odd one really shit but just about usable by the strongest.

In reply to Climber_Bill:

> Like this?

So much better to watch.

1
In reply to Robert Durran:

> So much better to watch.

Full version here:

youtube.com/watch?v=5-AkweXwoDs&

CB.

In reply to Robert Durran:

> What has actually driven the change to this style of comp bouldering.

My understanding is that there are two reasons.

One was to split the field more as the climbers were all just getting ridiculously strong and could pull on the smallest crimps and monos.

The other, as explained in a video with Alex Megos (on his youtube channel) and an ex IFSC doctor, was to reduce the effect of climbers getting lighter and improving their performance, but worsening their health. The new style, to a point, meant that climbers could do well, being more muscular and larger and not relying so much on being just lighter.

CB.

 Wimlands 13:12 Wed
In reply to UKC Articles:

Enjoyed that, liked the toe hook and 180 moves….

Post edited at 13:12
In reply to simes303:

> I agree. It's all getting a bit silly. 

What has actually driven the change to this style of comp bouldering. Is it because it supposedly has more spectator appeal (especially for non climbers?)? Is it better for splitting the field with low percentage moves? Do the comp climbers enjoy it more? Just a fashion that may change back to proper honest cranking in future?

 1poundSOCKS 13:15 Wed
In reply to Climber_Bill:

> What has actually driven the change to this style of comp bouldering.

And coordination problems tend to reward quick repeat attempts, unlike sustained and strenuous problems which tend to favour longer rests between attempts. Better for viewers.

 Pedro50 13:16 Wed
In reply to Robert Durran:

Well it's climbing not rock climbing so it has no compulsion to replicate what we recognise I guess.

 Fellover 13:29 Wed
In reply to Robert Durran:

The recent OQS had (in my opinion) a good mix of comp style problems and 'proper honest cranking', will be interesting to see what they set for the olympics.

I think it's not true that all comp climbers are so strong they can't be split on fairly basic strength/power boulders, there were a few good examples in the OQS that demonstrated that some people were significantly better at basic boulders than others, just as some people are better at the comp style than other.

One thing that is true is that the competitors go for many more attempts on the comp style boulders compared with the basic boulders. I presume that's because the basic boulders have to be really hard to split the field, so competitors don't have enough energy for lots of tries because it's physically closer to their limit than the comp style blocs are. E.g. there was one boulder I remember in the OQS where Ondra had one good flash go, then decided to rest until he only had 30 seconds or so left, he got maybe a move or two higher but didn't top it. I think it's fair to say that is, for most people, less interesting to watch than someone having about 5-10 tries and improving on the boulder over the course of those tries. I think it fits in quite well when 1/2 out of 4 of the boulders are a relatively basic style, but it would be boring and involve a lot of watching competitors sat on the mats resting if all the boulders were like that.

Post edited at 13:30
 JoshOvki 19:21 Wed
In reply to Climber_Bill:

> but I have seen a lot of young indoor climbers making the transition to real rock and being very very good, very quickly


It is because they are used to dual textured holds, suddenly what polished limestone feels like to mere mortals, feels like gritstone to them

In reply to UKC Articles:

Reminds me of the living room sequence of Johhney Dawes in Stone Monkey.....


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