Enhancing & Improving Your Sport Climbing and/or Bouldering Performance

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Want to improve your climbing ability and skills in 2013, 2014, and beyond? I bet you do! I know I do. And you know that I am always looking for ways to improve – not just for myself but also for my coaching clients along with anyone who reads this blog or any articles on the topic that I write. My motivation in sharing training information is really quite simple: I love to learn about better ways to train for climbing. I love experimenting on my own body to see what works best and what flops miserably and everything in between. And (lucky you!) I actually enjoy distilling the information out of general athletic training resources and research and trying to apply them and shape them for climbing training and performance purposes – specifically for sport climbers and boulderers.

I’ve often asked myself, “Why do I do this – try to share what I’ve learned? Why do I even care?” Frankly, I don’t have 100 percent of the answers to those questions. But I think there are a couple components that play into this: 1) I simply enjoy helping others; 2) I love improving at climbing and getting stronger, and I have enjoyed the past several years of “smarter training” the most out of all my climbing years; and 3) If I can help others get stronger and improve, shorten their time on the dreaded plateau, relieve their chronic overtraining, or correct poor training practices, that’s awesome! It goes back to #1: that I like helping others and it makes me happy to make other people happy. I love to hear about others’ climbing (and training and fitness and life) successes; it makes all my efforts to share what I learn as I go here worth it to me.

On to my focus here this year, then – I’m planning to post a series of entries and articles to help you (re)shape and (re)evaluate what you’re doing right and wrong or more efficiently/less efficiently in your climbing training and efforts at improving your climbing performance. I’m going to tackle these areas from easiest to hardest. So I’ll start out with the “easy tweaks,” or the areas of training and/or climbing that I believe are the easiest to modify and correct so that you can experience an almost immediate bounce in climbing performance. From there, I’ll move into the more medium areas, the murkier components of climbing and training that can be quick fixes for some people but take longer for others. Finally, I’ll delve into what I consider to be the most difficult areas and aspects of training for climbing – including those areas that take time and dedication and patience to produce the desired results.

What’s the timeframe for this series of articles and entries? At this point, I’m not sure – as I mentioned earlier this week, I have several other new major projects underway this year as well as all my usual “stuff;” this means that sometimes, I’ll struggle to find the time to put entries together (I’m guessing particularly when I’m traveling or at climbing events). But I’m aiming to do my best to put out at least 1-2 entries a month. This may actually be a good thing for you, though – as each entry is published, if there’s some lag time, you can think it through, contemplate whether the information applies in your particular case, and then take any and all appropriate steps to adapt your climbing and training plans as needed to work toward faster improvement. If you get slammed with material all at once, this can be overwhelming and counterproductive; taking it one step at a time has the benefit of allowing you to make it a habit and ingest the knowledge before moving on to the next area I cover.

Improve at Sport Climbing Table of Contents

Ways to Improve Your Sport Climbing/Bouldering (1): The Warm-Up (EASY)

Ways to Improve Your Sport Climbing/Bouldering (2): The Cool-Down (EASY)

Ways to Improve Your Sport Climbing/Bouldering (3): Breathing (EASY)

Ways to Improve Your Sport Climbing/Bouldering (4): Clipping (EASY)

Ways to Improve Your Sport Climbing/Bouldering (5): Resting (EASY-MEDIUM)

Ways to Improve Your Sport Climbing/Bouldering (6): Promoting and Maximizing Recovery (EASY)

Ways to Improve Your Sport Climbing/Bouldering (7): Using Two Key Training/Exercise Principles – SAID and Overload, Part 1 of 4 (MEDIUM – HARD)

Ways to Improve Your Sport Climbing/Bouldering (7): Using Two Key Training/Exercise Principles – SAID and Overload, Part 2 of 4 (MEDIUM – HARD)

Ways to Improve Your Sport Climbing/Bouldering (7): Using Two Key Training/Exercise Principles – SAID and Overload, Part 3 of 4 (MEDIUM – HARD)

Ways to Improve Your Sport Climbing/Bouldering (7): Using Two Key Training/Exercise Principles – SAID and Overload, Part 4 of 4 (MEDIUM – HARD)

Ways to Improve Your Sport Climbing/Bouldering (8): Strength Training (HARD)

Improve Your Sport Climbing/Bouldering (9): Building Power, Part 1 (MEDIUM-HARD)

Improve Your Sport Climbing/Bouldering (9): Building Power, Part 2 (MEDIUM-HARD)

Improve Your Sport Climbing/Bouldering (9): Building Power, Part 3 (MEDIUM-HARD)

Improve Your Sport Climbing/Bouldering (9): Building Power, Part 4 (MEDIUM-HARD)

Improve Your Sport Climbing: (10): Power Endurance, Part 1 (HARD)

Improve Your Sport Climbing (10): Power Endurance, Part 2 (HARD)

Improve Your Sport Climbing (10): Power Endurance, Part 3 (HARD)

Improve Your Sport Climbing (10): Power Endurance, Part 4 (HARD)

Improve Your Sport Climbing (10): Power Endurance, Part 5 (HARD)

Improve Your Sport Climbing (10): Power Endurance, Part 6 (HARD)

Improve Your Sport Climbing (10): Power Endurance, Part 7 (HARD)

Improve Your Sport Climbing (10): Power Endurance, Part 8 (HARD)

Improve Your Sport Climbing (10): Power Endurance, Part 9 (HARD)

Improve Your Sport Climbing (10): Power Endurance, Part 10 (HARD)

Improve Your Sport Climbing (11): Endurance, Part 1 (HARD)

Improve Your Sport Climbing (11): Endurance, Part 2 (HARD)

Improve Your Sport Climbing (11): Endurance, Part 3 (HARD)

Improve Your Sport Climbing (11): Endurance, Part 4 (HARD)

Improve Your Sport Climbing (11): Endurance, Part 5 (HARD)

Improve Your Sport Climbing (11): Endurance, Part 6 (HARD)

Improve Your Sport Climbing (11): Endurance, Part 7 (HARD)

Improve Your Sport Climbing (11): Endurance, Part 8 (HARD)

Improve Your Sport Climbing (11): Endurance, Part 9 (HARD)

Improve Your Sport Climbing (11): Endurance, Part 10 (HARD)

Improve Your Sport Climbing (12): Technique, Part 1 (EASY-HARD)

Improve Your Sport Climbing (12): Technique, Part 2 (EASY-HARD)

Improve Your Sport Climbing (12): Technique, Part 3 (EASY-HARD)

Improve Your Sport Climbing (12): Technique, Part 4 (EASY-HARD)

Improve Your Sport Climbing (12): Technique, Part 5 (EASY-HARD)

Improve Your Sport Climbing (12): Technique, Part 6 (EASY-HARD)

Improve Your Sport Climbing (12): Technique, Part 7 (EASY-HARD)

Improve Your Sport Climbing (12): Technique, Part 8 (EASY-HARD)

Improve Your Sport Climbing (12): Technique, Part 9 (EASY-HARD)

Improve Your Sport Climbing (12): Technique, Part 10 (EASY-HARD)

Improve Your Sport Climbing (13): Tactics, Part 1 (EASY-HARD)

Improve Your Sport Climbing (13): Tactics, Part 2 (EASY)

Improve Your Sport Climbing (13): Tactics, Part 3 (EASY)

Improve Your Sport Climbing (13): Tactics, Part 4 (EASY)

Improve Your Sport Climbing (13): Tactics, Part 5 (MEDIUM)

Improve Your Sport Climbing (13): Tactics, Part 6 (MEDIUM-HARD)

Improve Your Sport Climbing (13): Tactics, Part 7 (MEDIUM-HARD)

Improve Your Sport Climbing (13): Tactics, Part 8 (MEDIUM-HARD)

Improve Your Sport Climbing (13): Tactics, Part 9 (HARD)

Improve Your Sport Climbing (13): Tactics, Part 10 (HARD)

Improve Your Sport Climbing (14): Mental Training, Part 1 (HARD)

Improve Your Sport Climbing (14): Mental Training, Part 2 (HARD) (Fear of Heights/Falling)

Improve Your Sport Climbing (14): Mental Training, Part 3 (HARD)
(Fear of Failure/Success I)

Improve Your Sport Climbing (14): Mental Training, Part 4 (HARD) (Fear of Failure/Success II)

Improve Your Sport Climbing (14): Mental Training, Part 5 (HARD)
(Positive Thinking)

Improve Your Sport Climbing (14): Mental Training, Part 6 (HARD)
(Visualization)

Improve Your Sport Climbing (14): Mental Training, Part 7 (HARD)
(Your Mind on the Climb 1)

Improve Your Sport Climbing (14): Mental Training, Part 8 (HARD)
(Your Mind on the Climb 2)

Improve Your Sport Climbing (14): Mental Training, Part 9 (HARD) (Setting Goals)

Improve Your Sport Climbing (14): Mental Training, Part 10 (HARD) (Cultivating an Ideal Training Mindset)

Improve Your Sport Climbing (15): Injuries, Part 1 (Introduction)

Improve Your Sport Climbing (15): Injuries, Part 2 (EASY-MEDIUM)
(Five General Injury Prevention Tips)

Improve Your Sport Climbing (15): Injuries, Part 3 (MEDIUM-HARD)
(Five More General Injury Prevention Tips)

Improve Your Sport Climbing (15): Injuries, Part 4 (MEDIUM-HARD)
(Overtraining and Overuse Injuries I)

Improve Your Sport Climbing (15): Injuries, Part 5 (MEDIUM-HARD)
(Overtraining and Overuse Injuries II)

Improve Your Sport Climbing (15): Injuries, Part 6 (MEDIUM-HARD)
(Impact & Other Sudden Injuries)

Improve Your Sport Climbing (15): Injuries, Part 7 (MEDIUM-HARD)
(So I’m Injured, Now What? (I) – First Steps)

Improve Your Sport Climbing (15): Injuries, Part 8 (HARD)
(So I’m Injured, Now What? (II) – Physical Training)

Improve Your Sport Climbing (15): Injuries, Part 9 (HARD)
(So I’m Injured, Now What? (III) – Mental and Emotional Challenges)

Improve Your Sport Climbing (15): Injuries, Part 10 (HARD)
Starting Back After an Injury (or Any Break)

One Climber’s Story: Five Injury Case Studies (I)
Case Study One: Finger Injuries

One Climber’s Story: Five Injury Case Studies (II)
Case Study Two: Torn Muscles in Left Armpit Area (2006)

One Climber’s Story: Five Injury Case Studies (III)
Case Study Three: Ankle Busting (2008)

One Climber’s Story: Five Injury Case Studies (IV)
Case Study Four: An Array of Overtraining Incidents and Relatively Mild Overuse Injuries (2008-2012)

One Climber’s Story: Five Injury Case Studies (V)
Case Study Five: Nerve Impingement (2012)

Improve Your Sport Climbing (16): Nutrition and Body Composition, Part 1 (HARD)
Introduction

Move of the Month 1: Eyes on Your Feet (Improve Your Climbing Series)

Improve Your Sport Climbing (16): Nutrition and Body Composition, Part 2 (HARD)
Top 3 Areas of Focus for Sound Athlete Nutrition

Improve Your Sport Climbing (16): Nutrition and Body Composition, Part 3 (HARD)
Optimizing Body Composition and Strength-to-Weight Ratio (1)

Move of the Month 2: Straight-Arming Your Rests (Improve Your Climbing Series)

Improve Your Sport Climbing (16): Nutrition and Body Composition, Part 4 (HARD)
Optimizing Body Composition and Strength-to-Weight Ratio (2)

Improve Your Sport Climbing (16): Nutrition and Body Composition, Part 5 (HARD)
Alcohol and Athletic Performance

Move of the Month 3: The Backstep (Improve Your Climbing Series)

Improve Your Sport Climbing (16): Nutrition and Body Composition Part 6, (HARD)
Supplements

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