/ Please help me devise a basic training programme
I used to climb a lot, several times a week to about 6c sport and E2 trad. I've had a break for several years and want to get back to my old level.
Although I get that 'just go climbing lots' is the answer, I want to also accompany this with a training programme at the wall to primarily build strength (core and upper mainly). I'm pretty strong in the legs etc from lots of running and cycling.
Can anyone please help me devise a simple but effective programme that I can do solo at the wall? I'm thinking 3 times a week max, either bouldering or auto-belay (occasionally climbing with a partner too, but best to plan for solo then it's doable regardless of others' availability).
Stamina in my upper body is definitely my weakness.
Many thanks for any help
I started using an app called Thenics recently for training core and upper body strength with bodyweight exercise progressions - find it very good.
My "training" programme: don;t get injured; try really hard. Less fatuously, bouldering near your limit is the most effective means of building strength / power / technique for the tough stuff, and the most satisfying way of filling all those indoor winter sessions. Endurance / stamina, at least for me, can be built to an adequate level "on the job", throughout the spring spent on the rock, peaking in summer / autumn.
> bouldering near your limit is the most effective means of building strength / power / technique for the tough stuff, and the most satisfying way of filling all those indoor winter sessions.
I discovered, after about 15 years, that bouldering on a woodie/board is way better than using the bouldering room. It's far easier to have a productive session because everything's a strength problem, and you set them all at the right level of difficulty. The board I use just has terrible footholds, which teaches accuracy and makes you pull really hard too.
I've also had good results from doing 4x4 steep routes twice a week for about 3 months for stamina. I reckon that once I can do laps on 6c I'm about E3-fit for Pembroke style routes. Laps on steep 6c will get me up E4 at Lower Sharpnose, with the E3s feeling easy. But it won't help at all with anything that requires technique like granite or gritstone!
For trad, I've never found doing hard routes indoors to be useful. Onsighting a trad route is about as far removed as you can get from limit redpointing indoors - the requirements on the body could not be more different.
I agree that steep woodies with poor footholds are the way and the truth. The "jumping between blobs" setting of most walls leaves me cold.
Long base aerobic training is pretty key for trad IMO as it trains your ability to be comfortable and recover on medium sized holds for long stretches i.e. >8 minutes. There's also something to be said about doing your medium hard laps (so 6c for yourself) with at least 10 seconds spent on each handhold where absolutely possible with occasional longer stints of up to 1 minute - for me this a strong representation of trad where you'd be placing gear, weighing up safe moves and generally getting a bit more involved than with a sport redpoint where guns are blazing.
@OP Training for Climbing by Eric Horst is a great place to start and will give you a realistic/balanced understanding of how to form training plans and the various energy systems involved with climbing.
> I agree that steep woodies with poor footholds are the way and the truth. The "jumping between blobs" setting of most walls leaves me cold.
I'm a bit of a fan of a certain percentage of blob jumping (or perhaps blob slapping is a better description) - I find powerful problems on big rounded holds are great for building muscle power and contact strength without risking the fingers too much. I had loads of finger injuries over the last two years due to health problems and I found blobs were way safer to train on than the traditional crimpy fare - and my finger strength certainly hasn't suffered based on my max hangs.
Fingers all healed up now and loving the crimp once again but it's certainly a style of problem I'll continue training on. That's what it's all like in Font, right?!
Are you wanting to get back to E2 trad or 6c sport? (or higher grades, obviously).
Have you got a route in mind or a trip coming up? Either of these will help with the requisite motivation.
Also, don't forget to put in some stretching and pushing, if it's all pulling you'll get injured.
All our ski servicing is done in-store by fully qualified ski technicians, if you have any particular concerns or queries there's... Read more
Mike Hutton continues his tour of the UK and Ireland's finest crags with a visit to Wilton Quarries. Read more
Low impact force, long lifespan and zero sheath slippage achieved solely by perfect control over the manufacturing process. These... Read more
We have heard some very sad news - Chris Moor, known by many on UKC as 'Chris the Tall', has been killed in a snorkeling... Read more