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Toproping for flow
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arnoilgner


Aug 15, 2005, 9:15 AM
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Hello gamehendge, your Aug 10th post below:

"Since I don't put too much emphasis whether I onsight or flash a route, I often TR a route that is above my current redpoint level. It helps me work out the moves in my mind. I also climb it stopping @ all the bolts finding the best stances."

Everyone wants something different from his/her climbing so what you are doing isn't bad, necessarily. It could be limiting if you are wanting to be a competition climber. It's fine to get to know the route a lot and then redpoint. Yours is just a version of working a route. Remember also, that it is helpful to balance your approach. If your approach is always to toprope first then you'll be a lousy onsighter. Also, be honest with yourself about your intention behind doing this. If it is to hide a fear of falling then do some onsighting and fiesta de la whippers.

Perhaps this helps? arno


arnoilgner


Aug 15, 2005, 9:19 AM
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Hi degaine, your Aug 10th post below:

"Sometimes top roping resets me mentally. If on a given day the fear of falling takes over, I'll top rope a climb similar to hitting the "reboot" button on the computer."

I see your point. I think anything can be beneficial as long as we are honest with ourselves about hiding fears.
best, arno


dredsovrn


Sep 26, 2005, 2:50 PM
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I can grasp the concept of showing yourself how you can climb when you feel safe, and if it works for you, great. I find that I climb different moves when on lead because of the need to place gear or clip, so toproping is not typically productive for me. I also am more open to falling on TR, and thus tend to be more willing to give up.

As part of my search for the way, my trick is to lead everything, always, unless I am following a pitch on a multipitch climb as part of swapping leads. I feel more committed when I know I have to lead, and TR is not an option. It forces me to focus and pushes me out of my comfort zone on a consistent basis. This has really pushed my mental game and my ability.


arnoilgner


Sep 27, 2005, 1:20 PM
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Hello dredsovrn. Your quote below:

"toproping is not typically productive for me. I also am more open to falling on TR, and thus tend to be more willing to give up...
As part of my search for the way, my trick is to lead everything. It forces me to focus and pushes me out of my comfort zone on a consistent basis."

Being forced is a beginning. At least it engages you in the situation. However, consider taking learning to a new level where you don't force yourself. I suggest getting on toprope and learning how to NOT give up even though it is easy to do so.
best, arno


fightingmuskrat


Sep 27, 2005, 2:09 PM
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Jay -

I climb completely differently on top rope than on lead. On lead I'm smooth, but on top rope I tend to be sloppy and not climb as intelligently, e.g. I'll do moves on TR I'd never do on lead.
I will do a head point on TR once in a while, but I prefer to butcher the route on lead first. Doing this allows me to figure out all the moves and rests and take some falls. Hopefully you have a very patient belayer while you do this.

If the route is extremely overhanging, however, I'd do it on top rope so I can get back on and not have to be lowered each time I fall.


jt512


Sep 27, 2005, 2:20 PM
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In reply to:
Jay -

I climb completely differently on top rope than on lead. On lead I'm smooth, but on top rope I tend to be sloppy and not climb as intelligently, e.g. I'll do moves on TR I'd never do on lead.

Why won't you do those TR moves on lead, too? One of the big breakthroughs I made in my climbing was when I figured out that if those committing moves I was willing to make on TR worked on TR that they would work on lead, too. Are you sure you're not calling committing moves, where you're unsure of the outcome, "sloppy," and static moves, where you are sure of the outcome, "smooth?"

-Jay


dredsovrn


Sep 28, 2005, 4:39 AM
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In reply to:
Hello dredsovrn. Your quote below:

"toproping is not typically productive for me. I also am more open to falling on TR, and thus tend to be more willing to give up...
As part of my search for the way, my trick is to lead everything. It forces me to focus and pushes me out of my comfort zone on a consistent basis."

Being forced is a beginning. At least it engages you in the situation. However, consider taking learning to a new level where you don't force yourself. I suggest getting on toprope and learning how to NOT give up even though it is easy to do so.
best, arno

Interesting perspective. I hadn't thought of it that way. I suppose I have had the need to force myself into a more demanding situations. I will check it out. Thanks.


verticon


Nov 12, 2005, 2:47 AM
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I restarted climbing after a 9 year break and I concentrated on TR in order to regain my strenght, endurance and technical skills.
What a huge mistake !
Now I'm able to TR a 5.12 and when it comes to leading I couldn't send a 5.11. Therefore I promised myself to never TR again: fight or flight !
I came to this forum to find useful data on actually doing this, as far as it's quite impossible to buy the RWW book in my country and I thank you guys for all your posts !

PS I noticed that with 32 posts I'm a "toproper"... Well, it's true... for the moment !
I'm pretty sure I will soon become a "red point maniac" (on the forum too)
:)


dirtineye


Nov 12, 2005, 9:28 AM
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I'll agree that top roping allows you to concentrate on moves, and I'll also agree that anything you can do on TR you can do on lead, and I'll also agree that on severe overhangs or big roofs, you can forget about TR.

Although TR can be fun, there are several things I just don't like about it. The rope gets in the way. I worry about the anchor. I hate the big swings haha! TR is fun but it's not very satisfying. TR is more like exercise than climbing.

I feel like bouldering is better for flow that TR.

There just is not much challenge or risk in TR.

If you like to go looking for trouble on new rock (my definition of fun), TR is not usually an option anyway.


_fiend_


Nov 16, 2005, 3:07 AM
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Hmmmm, not sure that this is such a good idea. Not just because top-roping is evil and wrong mmmmmkaay, but because the flow required for leading trad / leading sport / top-roping is different in each case.

The flow for leading has to incorporate either brief pauses at obvious points (sport) or longer pauses at less obvious points you have to find yourself (trad), as well as the necessary rest positions (the need for which is partly due to those protection pauses). I think top-roping could interfere with those rhythms - both physically and mentally. If you get used to smoothly ascending the whole climb in one, how are you going to deal with pausing that ascent to place protection, and then restart it to leave the security of that protection??

An alternative might be to lead some easier climbs, of whichever genre is suitable, with the best flow you can - then you'd be practising a more applicable flow.

(The latter idea is also how I've sometimes dealt with having a bad day climbing - find something quite easy and focus on climbing it well, it sort of refreshes my mind).

Edit Verticon can't you mail order RWW over the internet??


verticon


Nov 19, 2005, 7:32 AM
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In reply to:
Verticon can't you mail order RWW over the Internet??
I only have a bank account in the local currency and no credit card. And even if I had a US Dollars credit card it would be very difficult to use it over the Internet because there were a lot of Internet frauds committed by Romanians and many sellers don't accept Internet orders coming from Romanians anymore.
Arno tried to help me and he gave me the email address of his contact in Romania, but I so far I received no answer.


arnoilgner


Nov 21, 2005, 11:09 AM
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Hello Verticon
Cordee in the UK is distributing the RWW book to some parts of Europe. You could contact them at: june@cordee.co.uk.
Or, you could check out www.rockcreek.com or www.amazon.com. They do international orders and can do the currency exchange also.
arno


arnoilgner


Nov 21, 2005, 11:15 AM
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Hello Verticon
Cordee in the UK is distributing the RWW book to some parts of Europe. You could contact them at: june@cordee.co.uk.
Or, you could check out www.rockcreek.com or www.amazon.com. They do international orders and can do the currency exchange also.
arno


rufusandcompany


Nov 27, 2005, 1:49 PM
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For me, toproping has never had the effect of making me climb better on the sharp end. In fact, I tend not to pay as much attention to my movement, when on TR.

The reality of a fall potential is a regular part of leading, and any apprehension about committing to a smooth climbing rhythm must be addressed and overcome if one wants to become a more effective leader. I believe that the most effective way to achieve that is to confront fall potential, head on, until it ceases to inhibit your ability to climb smoothly.


ajkclay


Nov 27, 2005, 3:55 PM
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In reply to:
I'm not sure if this WW material per se, and it probably isn't original either, but I wanted to mention this "trick": Sometimes I find myself stuck in a climbing mode in which I climb haltingly and hesitant about making committing moves. When this happens on a route, I sometimes find it useful to toprope the route once and pay attention to how I climb the route on TR, when I feel safe. Usually, I find that I climb faster, smoother, with greater willingness to make committing moves. Then I remind myself that this is how I climb when I'm not worried about falling, and then I lead the route with the image in mind of how I just climbed it on TR. I often find that I am then able to lead the route in the same manner that I just TRed, more smoothly and with greater commitment.

Anybody else do this, or have similar "tricks?"

-Jay

yep, exactly this. Just climbing, no other distractions, it's a great way to remind me of how I should climb in other styles.

Sometimes I climb TRing and really exaggerate the movements too, in order to work the technique and bypass just using strength on easy moves.

Cheers

Adam


verticon


Nov 28, 2005, 2:24 AM
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In reply to:
Sometimes I find myself stuck in a climbing mode in which I climb haltingly and hesitant about making committing moves. When this happens on a route, I sometimes find it useful to toprope the route once and pay attention to how I climb the route on TR, when I feel safe. Usually, I find that I climb faster, smoother, with greater willingness to make committing moves. Then I remind myself that this is how I climb when I'm not worried about falling, and then I lead the route with the image in mind of how I just climbed it on TR. I often find that I am then able to lead the route in the same manner that I just TRed, more smoothly and with greater commitment.-Jay

It didn't work for me: Few weeks ago I top-roped a 5.11 on-sight, than I climbed it again a couple of times because I liked the route very much, than I decided to lead it. I climbed past the crux without any problem and on the following easier section, while in a good no-hand rest stance with a bolt 2 m below my feet I noticed that the next bolt was 3 m away on a diagonal lay-back crack and the whipper would swing me away. That clogged me there for a long time: I decided to commit into the moves for a couple of times and down-climbed to the rest stance as I was feeling too pumped to climb over. Finally, after a 10 minute no-hand rest (with eyes closed and deep breathing) I went for it and desperately clipped the next bolt just before falling.
Well, it didn't end here. Once at ground level I decided to top-rope it again and I just flown over the route to the top without any problem: no pump, no black thoughts, nothing !
So, I don't think TR is of any help at all ! I decided to never TR again when the next climbing season comes. Meanwhile I started to train hard on my system training wall and on my home wall, because I think that feeling fit could be a great aid to my self confidence.


oldrnotboldr


Nov 29, 2005, 9:30 AM
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After reading all the posts, I would agree with the negative effects from top rope (for example a false sense of security), yet I believe there are some benefits as well. Primarily in the form of safely practicing specific moves/techniques. For example, one I was working on was getting pumped then doing a layback on an overhang (110'), while trying to slide a prusik up the rope to eliminate slack (forego the silent partner). Would probably never do such a thing on a real climb, but it was fun to play around with

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