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jb2100


Oct 10, 2010, 12:04 AM
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Bouldering Difficulty Progression
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Hey so I apologize if this is a question that has been asked before. Obviously these forums are pretty extensive and searching through every thread is too time consuming.

So I've been bouldering for about a year now. Almost predominately indoors, although I do sport climb outdoors 7-8 days a month. I usually boulder at my university's indoor gym anywhere from 3-4 days a week, 2-4 hours a day. For a college student this is quite a lot, probably way too much, but I love climbing so I keep doing it. In the past year I've made (what I consider) to be decent gains and can usually flash or onsite V5's, consistently climb V6 and after a few days of projecting climb V7. I kind of feel like i'm plateauing around this level though. I'm sure I will get better but I want to know how long it takes.

So my question for all you who have been bouldering for a long time is this. How long have you been bouldering, and what grades do you do? Indoor or outdoor? What was the longest period of time it took you to move between any two particular grades?


cruxstacean


Oct 10, 2010, 1:30 PM
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jb2100 wrote:
Hey so I apologize if this is a question that has been asked before. Obviously these forums are pretty extensive and searching through every thread is too time consuming.

So I've been bouldering for about a year now. Almost predominately indoors, although I do sport climb outdoors 7-8 days a month. I usually boulder at my university's indoor gym anywhere from 3-4 days a week, 2-4 hours a day. For a college student this is quite a lot, probably way too much, but I love climbing so I keep doing it. In the past year I've made (what I consider) to be decent gains and can usually flash or onsite V5's, consistently climb V6 and after a few days of projecting climb V7. I kind of feel like i'm plateauing around this level though. I'm sure I will get better but I want to know how long it takes.

So my question for all you who have been bouldering for a long time is this. How long have you been bouldering, and what grades do you do? Indoor or outdoor? What was the longest period of time it took you to move between any two particular grades?

Sending multiple V7s with a few days work after less than a year of climbing is hella good progress...

I have been climbing for about a year and half and climb a couple grades easier than you... It doesn't really matter how fast you are progressing, just train enough but not too much and work on technique.

Out of curiosity, are problems at your gym graded unusually hard for the difficulty? Can you climb this hard at other gyms?


rhythm164


Oct 10, 2010, 2:38 PM
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Sending 7 within a year to me says that your gym sets sooooft problems, either that or you should start sending out "sponsor me" letters.


jb2100


Oct 10, 2010, 3:45 PM
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The grades at my gym vary in difficulty in relation to other gyms. I can consistently climb V6 at all the other gyms I've climbed at but because I only ever manage to hit up these gyms for a day while passing through the city or something I've not tried to project a V7 anywhere else than my home gym.

At my home gym we have a variety of routesetters, some sandbag their routes so their 5's are really like 6's, but a lot of them are easier than normal too, so really there's quite a mix. The main difference is that our gym lacks inverted walls, so when I jump on a 45 degree wall I can MAYBE pull off a V4 if I work on it for a while. To compensate for this all of our holds at my gym tend to be a lot harder to hold onto. Mostly micro-crimps. So I should have made that clearer earlier, I climb V7 difficulty on vertical to maybe a few degrees inverted, definitely not on a 45 or a cave.


cruxstacean


Oct 10, 2010, 4:41 PM
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Well good job. Don't get injured.

I would be very happy if I were you...


lithiummetalman


Oct 10, 2010, 10:54 PM
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This is what you need to do.

1. Get a crashpad
2. A beanie
3. A vehicle
4. Some buddies, g/f, dog, cat, chinchilla
5. Beer
6. Ramen
7. Roadtrip

Go to Bishop, Hueco, JT, etc

Climb hard, have fun, make good times.

Come back and report your progress!


rainman0915


Oct 18, 2010, 11:45 AM
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first of all gym climbing grades are almost always irelevent, they can be so rediculously soft that they mean nothing at all. although outdoor ratings can be more consistant they can also be very inconsistant. There are two universal ratings that are almost always different for different people and these are V-easy and V-hard. basically what im saying is that you really shouldnt be worrying about grades, just get outside and start climbing for yourself, not for grades.


spikeddem


Oct 18, 2010, 12:26 PM
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rainman0915 wrote:
first of all gym climbing grades are almost always irelevent, they can be so rediculously soft that they mean nothing at all. although outdoor ratings can be more consistant they can also be very inconsistant. There are two universal ratings that are almost always different for different people and these are V-easy and V-hard. basically what im saying is that you really shouldnt be worrying about grades, just get outside and start climbing for yourself, not for grades.

What's wrong--specifically--with climbing for grades? How is it exclusive of climbing for his motivation? How do you know what motivates him? If his motivations include climbing the hardest grades he possibly can, I don't see any problem with that.

And if he wants to do all this in the gym without bothering to touch real rock, so be it. It should be about what he get's the most enjoyment from. Sounds to me like you're actually trying to get him to climb for your reasons and not his own.


colatownkid


Oct 18, 2010, 12:39 PM
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spikeddem wrote:
rainman0915 wrote:
first of all gym climbing grades are almost always irelevent, they can be so rediculously soft that they mean nothing at all. although outdoor ratings can be more consistant they can also be very inconsistant. There are two universal ratings that are almost always different for different people and these are V-easy and V-hard. basically what im saying is that you really shouldnt be worrying about grades, just get outside and start climbing for yourself, not for grades.

What's wrong--specifically--with climbing for grades? How is it exclusive of climbing for his motivation? How do you know what motivates him? If his motivations include climbing the hardest grades he possibly can, I don't see any problem with that.

And if he wants to do all this in the gym without bothering to touch real rock, so be it. It should be about what he get's the most enjoyment from. Sounds to me like you're actually trying to get him to climb for your reasons and not his own.

Quoted for posterity as this is perhaps one of the most logical things I've read on here lately.


gerbil


Oct 18, 2010, 1:32 PM
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jb2100 wrote:
Hey so I apologize if this is a question that has been asked before. Obviously these forums are pretty extensive and searching through every thread is too time consuming.

So I've been bouldering for about a year now. Almost predominately indoors, although I do sport climb outdoors 7-8 days a month. I usually boulder at my university's indoor gym anywhere from 3-4 days a week, 2-4 hours a day. For a college student this is quite a lot, probably way too much, but I love climbing so I keep doing it. In the past year I've made (what I consider) to be decent gains and can usually flash or onsite V5's, consistently climb V6 and after a few days of projecting climb V7. I kind of feel like i'm plateauing around this level though. I'm sure I will get better but I want to know how long it takes.

So my question for all you who have been bouldering for a long time is this. How long have you been bouldering, and what grades do you do? Indoor or outdoor? What was the longest period of time it took you to move between any two particular grades?

first of all, grades don't matter. second of all, climbing in a gym doesn't count. go outside n00b


erisspirit


Oct 18, 2010, 2:09 PM
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I got stronger bouldering then I sprained my ankle. Then I got strong again and sprained my knee...

so right know I boulder reasonably poorly.


milesenoell


Oct 18, 2010, 2:23 PM
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It sounds to me like you are trying to get a sense of how far you've come and how to keep improving. Finding people knowledgeable enough to help you answer those questions will likely yield better results than trying to do it alone, although I doubt that the internet is the place.


rainman0915


Oct 18, 2010, 6:03 PM
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this is very true. although the main point of my post was to point out the inconsistancy of grades in rock climbing. but you bring up a very valid point. climb for whatever reasons you want, i may not agree with them, but thats my problem lol


eric_k


Oct 29, 2010, 2:54 PM
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I am climbing right around where you are, but it took me a few more years to get there. I am no expert, but from what I have heard talking with people stronger than me it to take it slow. Keep climbing as much as you can, but don't just jump into campus training right away especially if you have only been climbing for a year. It takes a while for your tendons to adapt to the high stresses.

My advice is start doing some injury prevention workouts. If you do a few a week you will stay injury free, injuries will slow your progress more than anything else.


major


Oct 29, 2010, 9:53 PM
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Climbing for grades is tough, precisely because of the inconsistencies in grades people give to problems. At my university wall, the guy who sets the routes sets V2s that are the same difficulty as V5s at another gym in town. However, I'm sure you're able to judge which climbs are more difficult than others, so I guess the V-whatevers don't even matter.

It sounds like you're doing great!


Stoves


Jan 31, 2011, 3:00 PM
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Hey JB can you talk a little more about your progress?
How long it took you to get into v3, v4's and etc.. ANd also how hard was the transitions and how you managed to go up the scales.
Did you use hangboards, campus, etc? Break it down sounds like you had an excellent year


Jason4


Feb 2, 2011, 3:01 PM
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For reference I've been climbing since the middle of August (about 6 months now) and have been able to get a couple of 6b+ (Font' scale) at my local gym. I tend to think that they grade pretty true as the owners climb at Fontainebleau regularly and I've heard from other very experienced climbers that they even grade them easier than most would lately.

I wouldn't say that I projected either of the recent 6b+ problems, one I got second try and the other I got first try tonight after giving it about 4 good tries on Sunday. I think I would be climbing 7a by now if I didn't have a seriously bad elbow from an accident that isn't climbing related. I don't think I'm any better than average at my local gym.


Stoves


Feb 4, 2011, 3:17 AM
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Nice Jason. Keep it up dude.
I cant wait until I start doing 6b/6b+ (v4)

There's a couple 6b/6b+ that I been projecting for weeks just for fun. I'm mid way into it.

Now how does that translates to outdoor bouldering?


spikeddem


Feb 4, 2011, 7:24 AM
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Stoves wrote:
Nice Jason. Keep it up dude.
I cant wait until I start doing 6b/6b+ (v4)

There's a couple 6b/6b+ that I been projecting for weeks just for fun. I'm mid way into it.

Now how does that translates to outdoor bouldering?
http://translate.google.com/


curt


Feb 4, 2011, 8:59 PM
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spikeddem wrote:
rainman0915 wrote:
first of all gym climbing grades are almost always irelevent, they can be so rediculously soft that they mean nothing at all. although outdoor ratings can be more consistant they can also be very inconsistant. There are two universal ratings that are almost always different for different people and these are V-easy and V-hard. basically what im saying is that you really shouldnt be worrying about grades, just get outside and start climbing for yourself, not for grades.

What's wrong--specifically--with climbing for grades

Nothing really--it's pretty much analogous to masturbating for orgasms.

Curt


kachoong


Feb 5, 2011, 7:48 AM
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curt wrote:
spikeddem wrote:
rainman0915 wrote:
first of all gym climbing grades are almost always irelevent, they can be so rediculously soft that they mean nothing at all. although outdoor ratings can be more consistant they can also be very inconsistant. There are two universal ratings that are almost always different for different people and these are V-easy and V-hard. basically what im saying is that you really shouldnt be worrying about grades, just get outside and start climbing for yourself, not for grades.

What's wrong--specifically--with climbing for grades

Nothing really--it's pretty much analogous to masturbating for orgasms.

Curt

I wonder if there are people that fake their own masturbation orgasms just to help feel better about themselves? I wonder if it occurs more indoors than outdoors?


Jason4


Feb 6, 2011, 1:24 PM
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Stoves wrote:
Nice Jason. Keep it up dude.
I cant wait until I start doing 6b/6b+ (v4)

There's a couple 6b/6b+ that I been projecting for weeks just for fun. I'm mid way into it.

Now how does that translates to outdoor bouldering?

Thanks! I've been having lots of fun with the bouldering and since I moved the Netherlands it's taken over as my only active outlet. I'm used to lots of time in the mountains at home but I didn't start climbing until I got here. I'm a little embarrassed to admit that I haven't been climbing outdoors yet so I don't know how it will transfer over. I'm hoping to get to Fontainebleau next weekend before I move back to the PNW in a couple of weeks. I wish I had made the trip last fall but my climbing has improved a lot since then anyways.

The couple of 6b+ problems that I've gotten definitely suit my climbing style and so I think they are not too hard really. I have had a really hard time on other problems that take more balance or have some funny twists, high steps, or really tiny holds.

The biggest thing that I have done to help move up was to really take things down several levels of intensity when I've been hurt and to really focus on better grips on holds, cleaner hand and foot placement, and finding places to recover after the big moves. I've also started to do more training to build strength in my core and arms.


LeadZeppelin


Feb 11, 2011, 1:05 PM
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I've been climbing about 5.5 months consistently now. In the gym I'm flashing v3, can usually get v4 after a few tries, and I'll project v5s. I have to spend quite a lot of time projecting v6s.

I haven't bouldered outside a ton (have usually been sport climbing when I go out), but from what I have bouldered our gym ratings seem harder. ie, a v4 in horseshoe canyon seems easier than a v4 at our gym. But like I said I don't have enough experience outside to really say that's going to hold true.

I've gotten a lot of compliments from people I climb with that I'm getting really strong. Although, these are just nice people in general, so I don't think that's unusual. I would say I'm progressing at a normal rate. Typically anyone I climb with who is better than me has been climbing longer than me, and anyone I'm better than I've been climbing longer than them.

I remember the first time I climbed a v3. I projected this problem and was so excited when I finally got it. I didn't even notice my transition into climbing harder stuff. It was very gradual I guess. Plus I don't boulder exclusively--I also spend time sport climbing.

I try not to worry about grades too much though. I like problems that push me and if something stumps me for long enough it feels good to complete it no matter what grade the staff decided to put on it.


theextremist04


Feb 14, 2011, 1:57 PM
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The ratings at HCR vary quite a bit though; for example, Crack Ho is one of my favorite routes out there. It's rated V2, which shouldn't be hard, but it's a good bit harder than most of the V4s out there.


MasterOfKungFu


Feb 22, 2011, 8:16 PM
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I would agree on the ratings at your gym being a bit soft simply because it is a University climbing gym and the people who set the routes there are most likely students who haven't been climbing and setting long enough to really know what they are doing.
Not to take away from their ability, but they might be ego trippin'.


swoopee


Feb 23, 2011, 5:43 PM
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lithiummetalman wrote:
This is what you need to do.

1. Get a crashpad
2. A beanie
3. A vehicle
4. Some buddies, g/f, dog, cat, chinchilla
5. Beer
6. Ramen
7. Roadtrip

Go to Bishop, Hueco, JT, etc

Climb hard, have fun, make good times.

Come back and report your progress!

I have all but number 4. People and animals hate me. Can I still boulder? Unsure


curt


Feb 23, 2011, 6:43 PM
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swoopee wrote:
lithiummetalman wrote:
This is what you need to do.

1. Get a crashpad
2. A beanie
3. A vehicle
4. Some buddies, g/f, dog, cat, chinchilla
5. Beer
6. Ramen
7. Roadtrip

Go to Bishop, Hueco, JT, etc

Climb hard, have fun, make good times.

Come back and report your progress!

I have all but number 4. People and animals hate me. Can I still boulder? Unsure

Yes, but with nobody to spot you, be sure to wear a helment.

Curt


spikeddem


Feb 23, 2011, 9:29 PM
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curt wrote:
swoopee wrote:
lithiummetalman wrote:
This is what you need to do.

1. Get a crashpad
2. A beanie
3. A vehicle
4. Some buddies, g/f, dog, cat, chinchilla
5. Beer
6. Ramen
7. Roadtrip

Go to Bishop, Hueco, JT, etc

Climb hard, have fun, make good times.

Come back and report your progress!

I have all but number 4. People and animals hate me. Can I still boulder? Unsure

Yes, but with nobody to spot you, be sure to wear a helment.

Curt
Where should we wear it?


swoopee


Feb 24, 2011, 7:18 PM
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I always wear a helmet.


firewrx612


Feb 26, 2011, 1:58 PM
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My story is similar to yours regarding the fast initial progression.

I was (and still am) a life long mountain biker who took up climbing fairly late in life. I'm 38 now and have been climbing for a bit less than 2 years. I always wanted to try climbing, but outside of 2 or 3 times here and there I never did. Then in April of 2009 a rock gym with an extensive boulder area opened up 5 minutes from my house. So I started bouldering then and got hooked fast. I was going at least 3-5 times a week. In January of 10 I did 2 V8 problems within about a week of each other and then I plateaued. I haven't done a single V8 since.

Part of the problem was, I had some tendinitis in my rotator cuff. It wasn't that bad, so I worked through it, until it got a bit worse and it started to affect me at work (I'm a firefighter). Then I'd take a week off, but it'd come back. Then two weeks, same result. I tried that a few more times until I just bit the bullet and took a full 6 weeks off. This coincided nicely with the birth of my first child so it was kind of perfect. After coming back, I took it easy for a while and didn't go to the gym as often. It's six months later and I feel great. I'm as strong as I was, and feel much better.

Now I'm working on a V9 project that I actually think may be possible soon.

So I guess my advice is, take it a bit easier and if your body tells you to rest, rest. Especially when you're dealing with tendons, they take a long time to heal. Especially when you're old like me.


Masterkush


Mar 10, 2011, 1:10 AM
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lithiummetalman wrote:
This is what you need to do.

1. Get a crashpad
2. A beanie
3. A vehicle
4. Some buddies, g/f, dog, cat, chinchilla
5. Beer
6. Ramen
7. Roadtrip

Go to Bishop, Hueco, JT, etc

Climb hard, have fun, make good times.

Come back and report your progress!
wow that comment made me laugh, 5 stars. anyways, thats some sick progress man, ive been climbing hard for a little over 4 months now and just sent my first v5 and really close to finishing a few other v5s but i hate indoor climbing, its all outdoor for me. I hope to be at your level in the next 8 months, hopefully past it. Im 18 and would love to climb as a career but im sure its to late for that seeing as how all the best climbers are already traveling around the world at my age haha


spikeddem


Mar 10, 2011, 7:51 AM
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firewrx612 wrote:
. . .I'm 38 now and have been climbing for a bit less than 2 years . . . in April of 2009 a rock gym with an extensive boulder area opened up 5 minutes from my house . . . I started bouldering . . . In January of 10 I did 2 V8 problems within about a week of each other and then I plateaued. I haven't done a single V8 since.

V8 in nine months of climbing. Even for someone that is 18 or 19, that is quite likely the most ludicrous progression that I've ever heard of, except maybe Dave Graham's 5.14a in a year. Now, add in the fact that you were 36 or 37 years old, and it's unbelievable. I mean literally, it's unbelievable.

I'm not one to harp on others about quick progression, but this is just wrong. Considering you haven't done a V8 in the last year despite having done two in a single week, my guess is that the routes were three or four grades soft.


saint_john


Mar 10, 2011, 8:27 AM
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maybe it was a V3 and he misread it. 3s and 8s can look similar. I assume he has bad eye sight since he's so old.


sp00ki


Mar 10, 2011, 2:04 PM
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Such a weird thread. I can't quite tell if he's actually looking for advice, or for strangers on the internet to help stroke his ego...

That said, i'd be curious to know what testpiece V5s he's flashing (or, at least, in what areas he's climbing V5/V7), or if he's referring to juggy dynos in a softly graded gym somewhere.


firewrx612


Mar 10, 2011, 5:39 PM
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Vasya Vorotnikov was there on one of the days when I was working the problems and he didn't dispute the ratings. He and his climbing partner gave me some beta that helped me finish the problems.


Believe what you want.


gosharks


Mar 10, 2011, 6:01 PM
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MasterOfKungFu wrote:
I would agree on the ratings at your gym being a bit soft simply because it is a University climbing gym and the people who set the routes there are most likely students who haven't been climbing and setting long enough to really know what they are doing.
Not to take away from their ability, but they might be ego trippin'.
That is somewhat pretentious. When I was in Uni and was working in our gym, we would always sandbag our routes.


sp00ki


Mar 11, 2011, 9:59 AM
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firewrx612 wrote:
Vasya Vorotnikov was there on one of the days when I was working the problems and he didn't dispute the ratings. He and his climbing partner gave me some beta that helped me finish the problems.


Believe what you want.

In that case, you're probably talking about DRG-- whose boulder grades are incredibly soft, especially when compared to the outdoor bouldering on the east coast.
To put things into perspective, i've been climbing for a little over a year-and-a-half.
When i take a day trip to DRG, i typically flash V5 and V6, depending on the style. There isn't a boulderfield from Rumney to the Gunks to Haycock or GS or anywhere on the East Coast where i can flash V6. I certainly cannot come close to flashing V6 in my gym.

(that said, i'd wager DRG's problems are some of the most well set-- if not the best-- in our area)


(This post was edited by sp00ki on Mar 11, 2011, 10:09 AM)


firewrx612


Mar 11, 2011, 11:05 AM
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I'm talking about Rock Spot.


sp00ki


Mar 11, 2011, 11:09 AM
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Ah. He's a routesetter at DRG.

Forgive the assumption!


(This post was edited by sp00ki on Mar 11, 2011, 11:09 AM)


jomagam


Mar 11, 2011, 11:15 AM
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In reply to:
V8 in nine months of climbing. Even for someone that is 18 or 19, that is quite likely the most ludicrous progression that I've ever heard of, except maybe Dave Graham's 5.14a in a year.

Nick Duttle did a V10 in 8 months. Just sayin'...


MasterOfKungFu


Mar 11, 2011, 12:56 PM
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It wasn't intended to be pretentious. I was just making an over-generalization.
But you would agree that setters at a gym with 10+ years of setting experience are better at grading than college students?


sp00ki


Mar 11, 2011, 2:42 PM
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Depends on what they're setting, of course. A V12 climber who sets will probably have a much harder time accurately telling the difference between a V3 and a V5 than, for example, a V7 climber even if he's been setting for three times as long.

At least, i'd imagine it that way.
Don't know anyone who's been setting for ten years.


MasterOfKungFu


Mar 11, 2011, 10:38 PM
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We got some veterans here at the portland rock gym, and one cool thing about its little bouldering section is the whiteboard which has a list of the routes and you can right a little check mark if you think a route is graded soft or hard or just right.


flesh


Mar 21, 2011, 10:36 PM
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Guys the gym is great for training but you really shouldn't assume you can climb any specific grade based on your gym.

I know the route setters at three local gym's which I alternate between. As an example, there was a pockety v8 that I flashed, easily, I told the setter it's not even close to v8, he said, it's v6 but I rated it that way so that v6 boulderers wouldn't try it and hurt themselves on the pockets! lol

I've done dozens of problems outside above v7, for reference. Right now, there's a v7 im my gym that's v5. There's a v8 that's v 11 that no one can do. Lol.

When I go to my brother's gym, everything is a grade softer than my gym, he always refers to himself as a v7 or v8 boulderer, i took him to a granite bouldering area and got him on a v7 and a v6, he couldn't do multiple moves on either. I was spoon feeding him the beta, he climb v7 and once in a while v8 at his gym. I routinely flash the v8's at his gym and only rarely can at mine, those I can are usually soft. I bouldered v7 inside one full year before doing it outside. Funny thing is, around v10, I think it switches to more sandbag in the gyms. It's easier to climb above v10 ouside, lol. We have v11's in my gym that my v13 bouldering buddy projects and cant do after multiple days.

Moral of story, you can climb a certain boulder grade when you climb something outside that's been there for years and has had dozens of ascents and has consensus. Other than that, I try to just use it as a frame of reference.


pyrosis


Mar 22, 2011, 12:51 AM
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flesh wrote:
Guys the gym is great for training but you really shouldn't assume you can climb any specific grade based on your gym.

+1

And the moral of the story? go climb outside. :)

To the OP: Keep it up, don't get discouraged, have fun, learn about yourself, learn about movement. Don't be too caught up in the grade.


spikeddem


Mar 22, 2011, 7:31 AM
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pyrosis wrote:
flesh wrote:
Guys the gym is great for training but you really shouldn't assume you can climb any specific grade based on your gym.

+1

Right, because outdoor climbign--as opposed to indoors--has a non-subjective grading system?

Crazy


flesh


Mar 22, 2011, 11:57 AM
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spikeddem wrote:
pyrosis wrote:
flesh wrote:
Guys the gym is great for training but you really shouldn't assume you can climb any specific grade based on your gym.

+1

Right, because outdoor climbign--as opposed to indoors--has a non-subjective grading system?

Crazy

Not non-subjective, but, significantly less subjective, especially if you aren't very tall or very short, and equally important that I mentioned, is that there's is a consensus over years as to the grade of the problem outside.


spikeddem


Mar 22, 2011, 1:47 PM
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flesh wrote:
spikeddem wrote:
pyrosis wrote:
flesh wrote:
Guys the gym is great for training but you really shouldn't assume you can climb any specific grade based on your gym.

+1

Right, because outdoor climbign--as opposed to indoors--has a non-subjective grading system?

Crazy

Not non-subjective, but, significantly less subjective, especially if you aren't very tall or very short, and equally important that I mentioned, is that there's is a consensus over years as to the grade of the problem outside.
How in the world is it less subjective? Not just significantly, but at all.

Consensus has nothing to do with the subjective qualities of a route.


pyrosis


Mar 23, 2011, 3:46 AM
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All ratings are subjective, which is why I trust a consensus based on ascents by numerous climbers over years to be much more accurate than a grade assigned by how hard a single route-setter thinks a problem is. The subjective nature of the rating is somewhat mitigated by the consensus. EG, tall climbers find a reachy problem much easier than short climbers, but the consensus ends up being somewhere in the middle. Climbers obviously find some value in this, otherwise why even bother to have ratings at all?

And perhaps I am biased, but I strongly believe: If you have not yet climbed that grade on real rock, you have not yet climbed that grade.

Not that it matters, in the grand scheme of things. Nobody really gives a shit what grade you climb, or I climb, or anyone climbs.

Back to the OP: plateaus are quite common. Find out what weakness you have that is holding you back, and work to overcome that.


spikeddem


Mar 23, 2011, 8:12 AM
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pyrosis wrote:
All ratings are subjective, which is why I trust a consensus based on ascents by numerous climbers over years to be much more accurate than a grade assigned by how hard a single route-setter thinks a problem is. The subjective nature of the rating is somewhat mitigated by the consensus. EG, tall climbers find a reachy problem much easier than short climbers, but the consensus ends up being somewhere in the middle. Climbers obviously find some value in this, otherwise why even bother to have ratings at all?

The consensus does make ratings reliable, but it does not change the fact that they're not subjective. If you ask 100 people if they like hot dogs, and they all say yes, does that mean it is not subjective? Of course not. Same goes for grades. Adding more people's opinions does not make something less subjective, even though it does make it more reliable.

Furthermore, except at major bouldering destinations, you can you almost be guaranteed that any legitimate gym is going to see more ascents on a given climb (at least ascensionists adding their opinion to the consensus), except perhaps the hardest problems in the gym.


flesh


Mar 23, 2011, 11:05 AM
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pyrosis wrote:
All ratings are subjective, which is why I trust a consensus based on ascents by numerous climbers over years to be much more accurate than a grade assigned by how hard a single route-setter thinks a problem is. The subjective nature of the rating is somewhat mitigated by the consensus. EG, tall climbers find a reachy problem much easier than short climbers, but the consensus ends up being somewhere in the middle. Climbers obviously find some value in this, otherwise why even bother to have ratings at all?

And perhaps I am biased, but I strongly believe: If you have not yet climbed that grade on real rock, you have not yet climbed that grade.

Not that it matters, in the grand scheme of things. Nobody really gives a shit what grade you climb, or I climb, or anyone climbs.

Back to the OP: plateaus are quite common. Find out what weakness you have that is holding you back, and work to overcome that.

+1


jt512


Mar 23, 2011, 11:14 AM
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spikeddem wrote:
pyrosis wrote:
All ratings are subjective, which is why I trust a consensus based on ascents by numerous climbers over years to be much more accurate than a grade assigned by how hard a single route-setter thinks a problem is. The subjective nature of the rating is somewhat mitigated by the consensus. EG, tall climbers find a reachy problem much easier than short climbers, but the consensus ends up being somewhere in the middle. Climbers obviously find some value in this, otherwise why even bother to have ratings at all?

The consensus does make ratings reliable, but it does not change the fact that they're not subjective. If you ask 100 people if they like hot dogs, and they all say yes, does that mean it is not subjective? Of course not. Same goes for grades. Adding more people's opinions does not make something less subjective, even though it does make it more reliable.

How are you defining "subjective"?

Jay


flesh


Mar 23, 2011, 11:14 AM
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spikeddem wrote:
pyrosis wrote:
All ratings are subjective, which is why I trust a consensus based on ascents by numerous climbers over years to be much more accurate than a grade assigned by how hard a single route-setter thinks a problem is. The subjective nature of the rating is somewhat mitigated by the consensus. EG, tall climbers find a reachy problem much easier than short climbers, but the consensus ends up being somewhere in the middle. Climbers obviously find some value in this, otherwise why even bother to have ratings at all?

The consensus does make ratings reliable, but it does not change the fact that they're not subjective. If you ask 100 people if they like hot dogs, and they all say yes, does that mean it is not subjective? Of course not. Same goes for grades. Adding more people's opinions does not make something less subjective, even though it does make it more reliable.

Furthermore, except at major bouldering destinations, you can you almost be guaranteed that any legitimate gym is going to see more ascents on a given climb (at least ascensionists adding their opinion to the consensus), except perhaps the hardest problems in the gym.

Disagree, gym problems will almost never see more repeats than an outdoor problem in a popular area over years of time.
Also, even if a gym problem see's alot of repeats, only the routesetter is usually grading it. Not everyone who repeats it.

It's all subjective, clearly, however, assuming our goal is to get as close to grading something properly as possible, consensus over years makes a huge difference.

There's a local bouldering problem that is three super thin power crimp moves. X superstar climber supposedly sent it 8 years ago, rated it v13. Since then, NOBODY has done it, not one repeat, the first ascent was done by someone with a drug problem. Local v14 boulderers have tried it to no avail and James Litz aka crimpmaster, says it doesn't go.

I think it does go, however, it's probably a v15 three move crimp problem that only the likes of Paul Robinson might do.

Point is, consensus is important. It ADDS a large degree of accuracy, although, it will never be perfect.


Many problems nowadays are given different ratings depending on your height, that's through repeated ascents and consensus.

Hale Bopp, a huge dyno in font, is rated v8/v11 then it gives a breakdown of what it's rated for you based on your height.

My buddy whos 6 1 did it second try. Put Carlo Traversi on it..... he's wicked strong, most likely its v11 for him... I think hes 5 7.


pyrosis


Mar 23, 2011, 11:15 AM
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spikeddem wrote:
Furthermore, except at major bouldering destinations,

Well, I do live in Bishop :P


spikeddem


Mar 23, 2011, 12:48 PM
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jt512 wrote:
spikeddem wrote:
pyrosis wrote:
All ratings are subjective, which is why I trust a consensus based on ascents by numerous climbers over years to be much more accurate than a grade assigned by how hard a single route-setter thinks a problem is. The subjective nature of the rating is somewhat mitigated by the consensus. EG, tall climbers find a reachy problem much easier than short climbers, but the consensus ends up being somewhere in the middle. Climbers obviously find some value in this, otherwise why even bother to have ratings at all?

The consensus does make ratings reliable, but it does not change the fact that they're not subjective. If you ask 100 people if they like hot dogs, and they all say yes, does that mean it is not subjective? Of course not. Same goes for grades. Adding more people's opinions does not make something less subjective, even though it does make it more reliable.

How are you defining "subjective"?

Jay

Hmm. I'd say Dictionary.com's second definition:
Dictionary.com wrote:
pertaining to or characteristic of an individual; personal; individual.

I'd compare it to the 1-10 pain scale, but we've already seen where that would take us. Perhaps we need to get some placebo boulders for a controlled study on the V-grade?

edit: Even if I misused the term, I still stand by my original point that indoor problems are inherently no more and no less subjective.


(This post was edited by spikeddem on Mar 23, 2011, 12:50 PM)


lazymonkey


Mar 27, 2011, 5:15 AM
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i can crush most v5's and a few v6's @ the gravity vault in NJ

but i get pwnt by v0s in the gunks

Pirate


jb2100


Jul 3, 2013, 3:10 PM
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Funny looking back on this three years later and wondering what the fuck I was talking about. I believe when I posted this I was climbing that hard in the gym (on crimp problems of all the same style), most of the 5, 6's and 7's I had done were put up by a V11/12 Hueco Tanks local named Travis Vincent who likely couldn't tell the difference between a V4 and V8, to him it was just Veasy.
None of these problems I had done were outside. Fast forward 3 years. I've sent a few outdoor V5's at local area's but most of the bouldering I've done has been at Hueco Tanks. To date I've done 3 V6's and 1 V7 (which I think needs to be downgraded to V6) outside. According to my original post it would seem like I've gotten worse (though in reality I've gotten much better I was just too much of a noob back then to realize that gym grades don't mean anything). Granted I spend most of my climbing time sport climbing these days and not bouldering I still don't think I've ever pulled a V8 move (whether on a boulder or a route) in my life. If I could answer my original questions I would say "Start bouldering outside. Get a tick list, when you've flashed 5 of the last 7 outdoor V5's you've gotten on you can say you "consistently flash V5" same goes for the V6's, how many have you sent outdoors? What different styles? What about V7? Confirm where you at with outdoor boulders. Secondly, a lot of people can rush through boulder grades in the first year and get past V5, most people don't get very far past though, but your progress will slow down. This doesn't mean you're getting worse, just that bouldering is not a linear progression. V6 isn't x points of difficulty more than V5 which is x points of difficulty more than a V4. Have fun with your climbing, push yourself as hard as you can, don't worry about the numbers. You might find that you'll be stuck for 3 years at V5 even though you've certainly gotten stronger, or you could have a year where you jump up from V6 to V8, in the end the grades don't mean that much, you know how hard you climb, you know how much you've progressed compared to where you were. That's the only scale that matters.


(This post was edited by jb2100 on Jul 3, 2013, 3:13 PM)


gosharks


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jb2100 wrote:
Funny looking back on this three years later and wondering what the fuck I was talking about. I believe when I posted this I was climbing that hard in the gym (on crimp problems of all the same style), most of the 5, 6's and 7's I had done were put up by a V11/12 Hueco Tanks local named Travis Vincent who likely couldn't tell the difference between a V4 and V8, to him it was just Veasy.
None of these problems I had done were outside. Fast forward 3 years. I've sent a few outdoor V5's at local area's but most of the bouldering I've done has been at Hueco Tanks. To date I've done 3 V6's and 1 V7 (which I think needs to be downgraded to V6) outside. According to my original post it would seem like I've gotten worse (though in reality I've gotten much better I was just too much of a noob back then to realize that gym grades don't mean anything). Granted I spend most of my climbing time sport climbing these days and not bouldering I still don't think I've ever pulled a V8 move (whether on a boulder or a route) in my life. If I could answer my original questions I would say "Start bouldering outside. Get a tick list, when you've flashed 5 of the last 7 outdoor V5's you've gotten on you can say you "consistently flash V5" same goes for the V6's, how many have you sent outdoors? What different styles? What about V7? Confirm where you at with outdoor boulders. Secondly, a lot of people can rush through boulder grades in the first year and get past V5, most people don't get very far past though, but your progress will slow down. This doesn't mean you're getting worse, just that bouldering is not a linear progression. V6 isn't x points of difficulty more than V5 which is x points of difficulty more than a V4. Have fun with your climbing, push yourself as hard as you can, don't worry about the numbers. You might find that you'll be stuck for 3 years at V5 even though you've certainly gotten stronger, or you could have a year where you jump up from V6 to V8, in the end the grades don't mean that much, you know how hard you climb, you know how much you've progressed compared to where you were. That's the only scale that matters.

This is the proper way to bring back a dead thread. Props to you!


bigbear11


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was reading through this site and couldn't believe the people saying they were sending v7's after a few months of climbing. That is crazy in my head. Glad to see you come back and update your original thoughts after some more experience.

Lots of good comments on this thread, something I agree with is sometimes a problem is easy for one climber based on geometry and strength of particular climber then more difficult for another. My good buddy and I boulder in the same difficulty zone generally but there are lots of problems that he sends 1st or 2nd try that might take me half a day and a very creative maneuver to finally hit the move and visa versa.

Love the gym but real rock is where it is at.


Gravitron5000


Sep 3, 2013, 11:45 AM
Post #60 of 60 (2009 views)
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Registered: May 16, 2007
Posts: 43

Re: [curt] Bouldering Difficulty Progression [In reply to]
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curt wrote:
swoopee wrote:
lithiummetalman wrote:
This is what you need to do.

1. Get a crashpad
2. A beanie
3. A vehicle
4. Some buddies, g/f, dog, cat, chinchilla
5. Beer
6. Ramen
7. Roadtrip

Go to Bishop, Hueco, JT, etc

Climb hard, have fun, make good times.

Come back and report your progress!

I have all but number 4. People and animals hate me. Can I still boulder? Unsure

Yes, but with nobody to spot you, be sure to wear a helment.

Curt

A beanie is a bouldering helmet, so you should be good.


Forums : Climbing Disciplines : Bouldering

 


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