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Alex Bridgewater Demonstrates a 1Arm Hang Lock Off

Hangboard Ladder Training 1

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By Steve Bechtel Over the past few years, we’ve seen some incredible climbing gyms opening around the world. We’re talking multi-million-dollar indoor crags here, some so diverse and huge that you might never want to wander outside again. Strangely, though, the gyms aren’t cranking out superstars as fast as you’d think. I had a great…

Pinch Block with Kettlebell, Photo by Mei Ratz

Making Sense of Hangboard Programs

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by Steve Bechtel I’ve been asked to weigh in more than a few times on various discussions on which was the “best” method of hangboard training. Although this is much like deciding which is the best dumbbell workout, it got me thinking. To truly decide what the best hangboard program for you is, you’ve got…

Another Way To Endure

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By Steve Bechtel Endurance training comes in many forms and it can be argued that any climbing you do that makes you tired makes you better at enduring fatigue. As I’ve said before, most climbers who boulder indoors are, in fact, training endurance when they think they’re training power. Problem is, they are training an…

TS Strawberry Roan

Unlearning “Endurance” Training

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By Steve Bechtel I think I’ve been to a dozen different crags where I’ve seen some dude doing toprope laps on a route he’s got totally wired to “train endurance” at the end of the day. The thing is, this guy has been doing the same thing for years, and getting nowhere. It’s not that…

Systems Board Hang b&w, Photo by Mei Ratz

Get Rhythm

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By Steve Bechtel There are a hundred methods of training endurance for climbing. Rather than going on a rant and bashing all the bad ways people use to get some more juice, let me tell you about one good one that even a boulderer can get his head around. If you don’t relish the idea…

TS Strawberry Roan

“Tolerance” Training

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By Steve Bechtel You’re strong, no doubt. You’re way stronger in the gym than most of the guys you climb with at the crag, but they routinely burn you off out there. There’s gotta be something they have figured out that you haven’t. What they have that you don’t is tolerance. “Tolerance” is the ability…

Alex Bridgewater Demonstrates a 1Arm Hang Lock Off

Introduction to Density Training

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By Steve Bechtel You either boulder or do routes, right? So what happens when you want to get ready for routes by bouldering? You end up feeling like you’re not quite training right, and you’re correct. We have several good ways of training beyond the boulder problem, but training with a repeatable workout and definable…

Cowboy Up

4x4s and Other Variants for Training

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By Steve Bechtel It was probably about 25 years ago – we were mid-session in the bouldering gym and someone suggested we do some “4x4s.” At first I thought this had something to do with the lumber of the same name, but in climbing, this is simply four sets of four boulder problems done back-to-back….

Systems board hand, b&w, Photo by Mei Ratz

Rhythm Intervals Revisited

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by Steve Bechtel There are a hundred methods of training endurance for climbing. Rather than going on a rant and bashing all the bad ways people use to get some more juice, let me tell you about one good one that even a boulderer can get his head around. If you don’t relish the idea…

Charlie Manganiello Inverted Row TRX b&w, Photo by Mei Ratz

Improving Arm and Back Strength

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By Steve Bechtel Fingers aren’t the only part of a climber that can be weak. On hard routes and particularly in bouldering, we often see arm and back strength as a limiting factor. The ability to move between holds effectively, to lock off on holds, and the ability to keep your body close to the…

Charlie Manganiello Weighted Pull-Up b&w, Photo by Mei Ratz

Pull-Ups Are a Waste of Time

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By Steve Bechtel There’s nothing like a title almost everyone disagrees with. It’s a sure-fire way to make people at least look at the article. So, now that you’re looking, I’ll be more clear. If you’re interested in actually improving your climbing ability, you’d be wasting your time if pull-ups were a major part of…

Ab Wheel, Photo by Mei Ratz

Strength Training for Rock Climbing (Part 3)

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By Steve Bechtel There was never supposed to be a third part to this article, but I’ve received a few good questions about what was in the first two parts, and I’d like to elaborate. One of the biggest misconceptions about resistance training is the belief that it can directly ¬†improve your sport performance. Resistance…

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