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Weight training for climbing?
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lschmidt


Feb 22, 2006, 9:56 PM
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Weight training for climbing?
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I want to get into climbing, and I am in college - which means I don't have a car so can only go to the climbing gym possibly on the weekends. I would like to train for climbing during the week though.

Currently I am on a routine (not designed for climbing):

I usually do 4 sets of 5 reps:

monday, thursday: flat bench, military press, dips

tuesday, friday: weight pullups (35 lb dumbell or so), db rows, biceps

Can I keep doing this for climbing, or is there something better I could switch to?

Pullups are good for climbing right? This is my strong area...I do about 4x5 with a 35 lb dumbell in my legs. Should I change this to less weight and more reps?

Thanks.


happybob


Feb 22, 2006, 11:47 PM
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Well I'm sure you will hear this a hundred time, but the best way to train for climbing is to climb. After getting that out of the way, sense you don't have a choice, yes, pull ups are important, but don't forget your legs. And probably most importantly, your hands. I find that my hands tire before anything else. You can try pinching two plates together and holding them for some magic count, getting some gripper things, strange types of pullups... I'm sure there is more.

Overall, I've found that my weight lifting in general helped me in climbing. But if I were you, make sure your not to burnt out for a full workout when you do get a chance at the wall.

But then again, I'm not that good. :wink:


getsomeethics


Feb 22, 2006, 11:47 PM
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Re: Weight training for climbing? [In reply to]
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i have heard that working the opposing muscle groups to keep them balanced can avoid injury. so the push musles of the upper body. good core strength will always help, so lots of different ab stuff, not just crunches, or sit-ups.



you can check the similar topics menu below this thread as well, i bet there is a ton of info already here.


andrewbanandrew


Feb 23, 2006, 12:27 AM
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even if you can only climb two days a week at the gym, if you climb with the goal of getting a pump and staying pumped, then you'll get really strong really fast


kindasleepy


Feb 23, 2006, 2:17 AM
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Climb when you can.

For grip strength, do towel pull-ups. Drape a towel over your chin bar grab one end in each hand and go for it. Go for sets of 15 before adding weight.

Bicept curls with palms facing the floor, lighten up at first until you get familiar with it.

Noel


Partner phaedrus


Feb 23, 2006, 9:22 AM
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phaedrus moved this thread [In reply to]
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phaedrus moved this thread from General to Technique & Training.


turfguy


Feb 23, 2006, 3:49 PM
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Re: Weight training for climbing? [In reply to]
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I recommend doing more reps say 12-15 and make sure you try and hit all major muscle groups...don't neglect legs and stretching. personally during the winter I weight train 3x week and do most exercises on those enormous balls...not mine, but the ones in the gym mainly for improved balance.


fluxus


Feb 23, 2006, 4:41 PM
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If you can't climb during the week and you want to do lifting you need to understand that there is not a direct relationship between lifting and climbing performance. That being said, consider developing:

- the muscles of your trunk, erector spinae, Obliques, Abs, etc.

- Intermuscular coordination. Climbing movement does not really depend upon the strength of individual muscles, its more dependent upon coordination.

working on these two areas may translate to climbing.

You mentioned pull-ups. While many people on this site will recommend this activity to you, I won't. There are a number of reasons for this but being a new climber I wouldn't want you to think that climbing is about pulling yourself up a climb, its not. What we do with hand holds and pull-up bars are very different. Also doing tons of pull-ups can be very hard on the elbows.

If you want to work your arms, get a hang board for your doorm room.

The best advice though, is that you need a high volume of high quality movement practice and that can only be achieved through climbing, so Get a bus pass, hook up with other climbers on campus or what ever and find a way to get to the crag or climbing gym during the week.


rockkid55


Feb 23, 2006, 4:55 PM
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Penis push-ups. I've found that doing this exercise gives me the big balls needed to run-out on nasty slabs.


claramie


Feb 23, 2006, 5:04 PM
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It wouldn't be something to do at the gym, but you can buy a fingerboard for your place. They aren't that expensive and you can find some place to hang it (above a doorway, or something). Maybe rock rings (Metolius) would work better for you.

Anyway, the idea would be to do pull-ups on climbing-like holds. Fingers and forearms are more necessary than lats and biceps. You're not going to find chin-up bar holds out doors and rarely indoors either. The towel thing works too but if you get used to doing your sets on one pad pockets or deeper two finger pockets, you will get a lot better grip tension and resilience.

Don't overdo it on small holds, especially early on. Finger strength is mainly tendon strength. Tendons get less blood flow than muscles and take a while to develop. If you go straight to some really thin crimp hold for pull-ups you might bust a tendon, and then you're screwed.

Like everyone will say, most important is climb when you can. It's more about balance and footwork than it is about brute strength (although that never hurt anyone either).

CL


wzrdgandalf


Feb 23, 2006, 5:29 PM
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-skull crushers - curls with your palms facing the ground (biceps and triceps)
-lat pulls- pulling down behind the head and in front while sitting down (lats)
-Ab workouts preferrably a very slow workout where going back down is stressed but at a slow speed. (abs obliques)
-Anything to work out the back of your thighs for heel hooking
-Calf extensions- you dont need too much strength but a good stamina worktout
-Dips to even out the increased work to the biceps (triceps)
-Forearm burns- in most gyms they will have some type of cylindrical pipe (pvc sometimes) with a rope connected to it, add a weight to the end of it and roll it up the pipe while keeping your arms as still as possible, this will kill your forearms.
-Pinch two 5 or 10 pound weights together and hold until failure
-Swimming and running are good to build lean muscle which you want for climbing, many times you will see the strongest person at the University of Georgia come to our climbing wall and suck horribly because they weigh so frickin much. You want lean muscle remember that.
-YOGA!!!!!! last but not least, if at all possible take this up and you will get into some of the best climbing shape of your life.


raymondjeffrey


Feb 23, 2006, 5:37 PM
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You should, without question, do the 'Workout From Hell'. John Long perfected it and it is INSANE. I have been lifting seriously for 20+ years and the WFH is the most intense work out that I have ever seen. To have done it for the 4 months that is required was one of the biggest challenges that I have ever faced.

Carry On,

Jefro


bahandi


Feb 23, 2006, 8:50 PM
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i weight train a lot myself. mostly before the wall opens up in my gym. i would have to agree that there is no direct relation between lifting weights and climbing, though the added strength has helped me pass certain 'barriers'.

from personal experience, i would have to say that finger and forearm strength is crucial. strong, stable legs are a must. and flexibility. i can't stress that enough. if i could, i would take up yoga, or even pilates.


tobym


Feb 24, 2006, 1:11 AM
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As ever, listen to Fluxus, he's the man 8^)


tommez


Feb 24, 2006, 3:24 AM
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In reply to:
As ever, listen to Fluxus, he's the man 8^)

Agreed!


headchop


Feb 24, 2006, 8:15 AM
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In reply to:
In reply to:
As ever, listen to Fluxus, he's the man 8^)

Agreed!
Yep.

The problem with developing strength early on is that you'll probably end up relying on it too much, which in turn could have a negative impact on developing good technique.

Fingerboards can easily lead to injury if you're a new climber - your tendons probably aren't ready for it yet.

I suggest you just try to get out for some easy buildering around campus.


scrappydoo


Feb 24, 2006, 9:04 AM
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Train core strength in the gym.

Work on a 'front lever' (search it) for a minute every time you go to the gym.

Don't just do things that are up/down, in/out, forward/backward: do pushups with your feet on a medicine ball, do twisting situps, spend 5 minutes balancing on a medicine ball (sitting at first), anything that works accessory muscles and forces you to tighten your whole core while you work.

Hold the bar at your chest for 2 seconds when you're doing your lat pull-downs, while focusing on proper contraction of your back muscles (don't hunch, pull with shoulder blades and lats)

Do your standing lifts (bicep curls, dumbbell flys, etc) standing on a balance board (or something like it), but only if you can do it safely.

Another one I learned (from Shot Put, surprisingly) is to grab a 20 or 25 pound dumbbell and hold it by its end with one hand: kinda palm the thing and don't wrap your fingers around the inside edge-- keep your fingers on the sides of the weight on the close end. Hold the dumbbell in a vertical position for 30 seconds and repeat.


fluxus


Feb 24, 2006, 9:21 AM
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In reply to:
In reply to:
In reply to:
As ever, listen to Fluxus, he's the man 8^)

Agreed!
Yep.

The problem with developing strength early on is that you'll probably end up relying on it too much, which in turn could have a negative impact on developing good technique.

Fingerboards can easily lead to injury if you're a new climber - your tendons probably aren't ready for it yet.

I suggest you just try to get out for some easy buildering around campus.

Thanks for the props!

Also Headchop is right to caution about fingerboards. Fingerboards are far more climbing specific than alot of the other activities that climbers do and that are being recommended to the OP, but the new climber should take it slow, don't use full body weight for a while, use only the biggest holds, stay away from the pocktes, and get plenty of rest between workouts.

As for buildering, has there ever been a college campus that wasn't full of buildering?!? I knew some kids who went to Yale that were able to top rope their doorm. By all means builder! So fun! You just need to master your " I'm-just-standing-here-next-to-this-wall-minding-my-own-business-look" when ever campus police come by.

Why, I remember back in the day . . .


collegekid


Feb 24, 2006, 10:01 AM
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Weight training is good for injury prevention and overall fitness, but does little to improve technical climbing ability beyond being in good physical shape (you'd probably be just as well off running or swimming instead).


timesofgrace


Feb 24, 2006, 10:05 AM
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if doing pull-ups i almost always do off set pull ups - one hand about a foot higher than the other - and pull up to whichever hand is higher. and if you're stuck with a single bar to do pull ups on work on using as much as your finger tips as possible as opposed to wrapping your whole hand around the bar.
and keep your palms facing away from you.

don't forget your legs too. (for the most part) your hands keep you against the wall, your feet get you up it.

someone mentioned yoga. i definitely suggest taking that up - specifically for core strength, balance, and flexibility.

always cross train too. when you do pull ups do push ups, etc. it makes things easier on your tendons.

but i agree with most other people. climbing is the best work out for climbing, so try to find another climber on campus with a car and get climbing because good technique is what will really help you start climbing harder problems right away.


tobym


Feb 25, 2006, 12:26 AM
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In reply to:
You just need to master your " I'm-just-standing-here-next-to-this-wall-minding-my-own-business-look" when ever campus police come by.

Always harder in rockboots with a chalk bag! :lol:


lschmidt


Feb 26, 2006, 1:57 PM
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I was bored around the room yesterday, and found what seemed like a good workout for the core:

Hang on a pullup bar where you have nothing in front or behind you. Then with your arms straight, rotate your body forward and up. I you look at it from a side view, your arms stay in the same position, but the rest of your body rises up like a male erection (sorry but that's the best description I could come up with).

From here do "reverse pushups" by pulling your body up to the bar, hold various positions, use three fingers, etc.

Also, how about regular pullups with less than four fingers? Also, what if I don't wrap my fingers all the way around the bar, to simulate small holds?


tobym


Feb 27, 2006, 2:09 AM
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In reply to:
I was bored around the room yesterday, and found what seemed like a good workout for the core:

Hang on a pullup bar where you have nothing in front or behind you. Then with your arms straight, rotate your body forward and up. I you look at it from a side view, your arms stay in the same position, but the rest of your body rises up like a male erection (sorry but that's the best description I could come up with).

Otherwise known as a front-lever :wink:


kyote321


Feb 27, 2006, 5:54 AM
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12-ounce curls only.

gymastic rings are the way forward. wieghts involve only one group at a time, involve the whole body, you'll develop crazy core strength.


fluxus


Feb 28, 2006, 3:12 PM
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In reply to:
In reply to:
You just need to master your " I'm-just-standing-here-next-to-this-wall-minding-my-own-business-look" when ever campus police come by.

Always harder in rockboots with a chalk bag! :lol:

Yes indeed, there would be no challenge to it without the rock shoes and chalk bag. Lets not forget the tattered clothing, chalk up to the elbows, iPod, dreadlocks, crash pads, and full climber possee.


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