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sidereus7


Sep 13, 2011, 12:53 PM
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Techniques for Short People
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First off, I just want to say that I completely understand that every body type has its advantages and disadvantages, and I truly enjoy watching the creative and awesome ways that varied people climb.

That being said, I am 5' 2", 98 lbs, and super flexible. I am just starting to transition TR from 5.9 to 5.10a's and I'm having some trouble with my height. Sometimes on routes, there is nothing but blank wall and I am 6" or more out of reach of the next hold.

Can anyone share some helpful techniques for us shorties to reach holds that seem just out of reach?

Thanks! =)


gblauer
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Sep 13, 2011, 1:08 PM
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try harder

Seriously, start working on technique rather than the grades. The more you learn to move your body (at the lower grades) the easier it will be for you to figure out how to make a longer move. For example: what about a drop knee?

Bottom line: As a beginner, I would not chase the grades. I would dial it back, get a copy of the self coached climber and start drillin'


jomagam


Sep 13, 2011, 1:17 PM
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This is not really answering your question, but some problems are just not for everyone, especially in the gym where you're less likely to be able to use intermediate holds. I've seen a 5'0" climber who boulders 8 V grades harder than I have more trouble with a boulder problem than me, who's 6'0".


sidereus7


Sep 13, 2011, 1:20 PM
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In reply to:
try harder

I appreciate the response, and I definitely take your message to heart. I've been working very slowly through the grades, trying not to rush at all as my male friends power past me.

However, I sincerely mean that I am standing on the topmost hold with both feet on their tippy toes, and my arms are fully extended upward and the tips of my fingers are still about 6 inches out of reach. (I have a particular route in mind here.)

I was just curious if there's some ninja way to get up there. Once again, I appreciate the sentiment, but I do have a particular issue in mind here.


jomagam


Sep 13, 2011, 1:44 PM
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And to state the obvious: dynamic movement will help you reach farther.


damienclimber


Sep 13, 2011, 1:47 PM
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sidereus7 wrote:
First off, I just want to say that I completely understand that every body type has its advantages and disadvantages, and I truly enjoy watching the creative and awesome ways that varied people climb.

That being said, I am 5' 2", 98 lbs, and super flexible. I am just starting to transition TR from 5.9 to 5.10a's and I'm having some trouble with my height. Sometimes on routes, there is nothing but blank wall and I am 6" or more out of reach of the next hold.

Can anyone share some helpful techniques for us shorties to reach holds that seem just out of reach?

Thanks! =)


climb more


Rudmin


Sep 13, 2011, 2:00 PM
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learn how to dyno


Kartessa


Sep 13, 2011, 2:23 PM
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sidereus7 wrote:
In reply to:
try harder

I appreciate the response, and I definitely take your message to heart. I've been working very slowly through the grades, trying not to rush at all as my male friends power past me.

However, I sincerely mean that I am standing on the topmost hold with both feet on their tippy toes, and my arms are fully extended upward and the tips of my fingers are still about 6 inches out of reach. (I have a particular route in mind here.)

I was just curious if there's some ninja way to get up there. Once again, I appreciate the sentiment, but I do have a particular issue in mind here.

I think you're gonna get told to quit making excuses. Find an intermediate hold, smear, get your feet higher, figure it out.

I'm 5'2" and every time I pull the short card, I get schooled by someone shorter than me and often send the next go...

... so I'm calling "bullshit" on the "top short" excuse


sidereus7


Sep 13, 2011, 2:36 PM
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Kartessa wrote:
Find an intermediate hold, smear, get your feet higher, figure it out.

This is what I'm asking. What techniques have other short people found helpful to get them to holds just out of reach.

I stated at the beginning that I'm not making an excuse; I'm just looking for a list of good techniques to go to when things are out of reach. I should've just asked, in general, what techniques are helpful for getting those holds.

It was an honest question.


granite_grrl


Sep 13, 2011, 2:37 PM
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Kartessa wrote:
sidereus7 wrote:
In reply to:
try harder

I appreciate the response, and I definitely take your message to heart. I've been working very slowly through the grades, trying not to rush at all as my male friends power past me.

However, I sincerely mean that I am standing on the topmost hold with both feet on their tippy toes, and my arms are fully extended upward and the tips of my fingers are still about 6 inches out of reach. (I have a particular route in mind here.)

I was just curious if there's some ninja way to get up there. Once again, I appreciate the sentiment, but I do have a particular issue in mind here.

I think you're gonna get told to quit making excuses. Find an intermediate hold, smear, get your feet higher, figure it out.

I'm 5'2" and every time I pull the short card, I get schooled by someone shorter than me and often send the next go...

... so I'm calling "bullshit" on the "top short" excuse
Smile

There are ways to maximize your height. Core strength and lockoff will help with this, but it's all meaningless without the technique to go with it.

Short people also have to make use of a lot of intermediates too. To the OP, with your weight you should be able to pull on holds that I can only dream of. Maybe you have problems with this right now, but your grip strength will continue to improve as will your strength and technique if you continue to work at improving.


ceebo


Sep 13, 2011, 2:45 PM
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Grow?. Sorry.. somebody had to do it ;p.

Na really, best tip i can give you is to.. well.. grow. Laugh


Idako


Sep 13, 2011, 3:43 PM
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sidereus7


Sep 13, 2011, 3:46 PM
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lmao

best advice so far.


mr.tastycakes


Sep 13, 2011, 4:14 PM
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sidereus7 wrote:

Can anyone share some helpful techniques for us shorties to reach holds that seem just out of reach?

Thanks! =)

High steps and rock-overs, turning and drop knees, moving dynamically (using momentum), doing "dynos"/throws, hand-foot matches, high heelhooks...the list goes on and on. Make sure you get the most out of the reach you have by getting on your tippy toes and elongating your body as much as possible. Enjoy being 98 lbs. Lots of elite climbers are very short and thin, so don't sweat it...there is a way.


johnwesely


Sep 13, 2011, 4:24 PM
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Re: [sidereus7] Techniques for Short People [In reply to]
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sidereus7 wrote:
First off, I just want to say that I completely understand that every body type has its advantages and disadvantages, and I truly enjoy watching the creative and awesome ways that varied people climb.

That being said, I am 5' 2", 98 lbs, and super flexible. I am just starting to transition TR from 5.9 to 5.10a's and I'm having some trouble with my height. Sometimes on routes, there is nothing but blank wall and I am 6" or more out of reach of the next hold.

Can anyone share some helpful techniques for us shorties to reach holds that seem just out of reach?

Thanks! =)

Here is what you do. Climb steep, thuggy routes and never get pumped. Climb techy face climbs and have no problem cranking off dime edges. Climb finger cracks and get tight hand jams instead. Climb slab just for kicks.


Junicus


Sep 13, 2011, 4:36 PM
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I'm also 5'2". I love being a short climber. You get to be more creative and technical.

Find some short climbing buddies that are better than you. You'll pick up the techniques that are most likely to work for you, faster.

I also climb with tall people. But their style is so different their beta is often useless to me.

(This post was edited by Junicus on Sep 13, 2011, 4:38 PM)


redlude97


Sep 13, 2011, 4:49 PM
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One technique to get an extra inch or two of reach is to learn the "look-away" reach. This is when you look in the opposite direction of the hold you are trying to reach for instead of looking directly at the hold. Most beginners haven't learned that move.


vencido


Sep 13, 2011, 5:34 PM
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As long as the distance between holds is less than the distance of your arms stretched out fully (in your case about 5 feet), there will be a way to make the move.

It might not be easy, but just know that it is always possible.


rhei


Sep 13, 2011, 6:25 PM
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The OP didn’t specify whether the particular problem with the out-of-reach hold was indoors or out. On natural rock, being short isn’t any excuse at all. In most all cases there will be more to work with than found on gym walls.

The situation can be quite different in a gym. Gym routes can be designed and set to force climbers to practice specific techniques and body positions. A good training route might include wide spacing of holds if foot and hand holds are thoughtfully positioned to let the climber set up for a dyno. Unfortunately, my experience is that too many route setters lack the skill or the experience to create such routes. Instead, they simply throw in reachy moves in an attempt to make mediocre routes more difficult. If you’re dealing with such a route, skip it. Don’t waste your time; instead, ask yourself just what you learn from such a route (probably nothing.)

Shorter climbers do just fine when they learn to incorporate flexibility and power into their technique. Try working those elements into the time you spend in a gym. Following on what Mr. T suggested, practice dynamic movement by transferring momentum upward from the feet (it doesn’t have to be a full dyno or throw). Learning efficient weight transfer as you rock onto a high step is another critical skill. Discover how to drive through with the knee as you shift over your foot. Another skill to try is rolling your hips as you extend your reach on the opposite side. This is like the above-described “look-away” move, but the movement is initiated primarily in the hips, not in head and shoulders. You might also look for some good bouldering moves where you can practice lock-offs and shooting your body upward in full extension. All these techniques will stand you in good stead at the crags and in the process of learning them you’ll do just fine on indoor routes. (At least on the ones worth doing.)

(This post was edited by rhei on Sep 14, 2011, 10:21 AM)


sidereus7


Sep 13, 2011, 6:42 PM
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Thank you for your reply. The route I'm climbing is inside a gym, and I'm hoping to get outside to climb soon. I've only been climbing for about a month and a half, but I love it.

It sounds like in general, good technique all around is what will compensate for lack of natural reach. But I will also try to push myself toward dynos and lock-offs. Thanks again. =)


sidereus7


Sep 13, 2011, 6:43 PM
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Junicus wrote:
I'm also 5'2". I love being a short climber. You get to be more creative and technical.

Find some short climbing buddies that are better than you. You'll pick up the techniques that are most likely to work for you, faster.

I also climb with tall people. But their style is so different their beta is often useless to me.

I know exactly what you mean. I go climbing with mostly guys that are around 6' 0" and 175lbs. Our styles of climbing are completely different and currently, so are our abilities.

I have to find myself some short friends in Seattle!


sidereus7


Sep 13, 2011, 6:48 PM
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mr.tastycakes wrote:
sidereus7 wrote:

Can anyone share some helpful techniques for us shorties to reach holds that seem just out of reach?

Thanks! =)

High steps and rock-overs, turning and drop knees, moving dynamically (using momentum), doing "dynos"/throws, hand-foot matches, high heelhooks...the list goes on and on. Make sure you get the most out of the reach you have by getting on your tippy toes and elongating your body as much as possible. Enjoy being 98 lbs. Lots of elite climbers are very short and thin, so don't sweat it...there is a way.

Thanks for the encouragement! I've definitely noticed that I don't tire as quickly with climbing as my other friends and tend not to get pumped easily.

I'll keep your advice in mind when I climb tonight. I really have to start using those heel hooks.


Colinhoglund


Sep 13, 2011, 6:50 PM
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Re: [Kartessa] Techniques for Short People [In reply to]
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Kartessa wrote:
sidereus7 wrote:
In reply to:
try harder

I appreciate the response, and I definitely take your message to heart. I've been working very slowly through the grades, trying not to rush at all as my male friends power past me.

However, I sincerely mean that I am standing on the topmost hold with both feet on their tippy toes, and my arms are fully extended upward and the tips of my fingers are still about 6 inches out of reach. (I have a particular route in mind here.)

I was just curious if there's some ninja way to get up there. Once again, I appreciate the sentiment, but I do have a particular issue in mind here.

I think you're gonna get told to quit making excuses. Find an intermediate hold, smear, get your feet higher, figure it out.

I'm 5'2" and every time I pull the short card, I get schooled by someone shorter than me and often send the next go...

... so I'm calling "bullshit" on the "top short" excuse

^^^^^
What she said. My girlfriend and I are opposites, I'm lanky and she's well, petit . . . She gets around most things with smearing and flexibility that I muscle through. And my friend Mary, I don't think shes even 5'0, she can heal hook and stem like mad and out sends me on techy face climbing. Sorry, I too call BS!!!!!!!!! (in the most encouraging way possible)


JohnCook


Sep 13, 2011, 7:42 PM
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I am 6ft tall with a +4.5inch ape index. I regularly climb with much shorter people. The thing which has most improved my technique is being disallowed from using my reach on routes (Climbing short, not lifting my hands any higher than the top of my head, fun but humbling) My climbing partners have then seen my use my feet, usually getting them very high, whilst leaving my hands low, frequently below shoulder high. They then adapt the technique, and use their feet, getting them 'relatively' very high, which allows them the 'reach' across the long move. They can frequently static moves which were designed to be dynamic.
Think about your feet and body and hand position, combine the three parts to enable long moves. Don't give up, you can and will do it if you apply some thought to the moves.


mrnomas


Sep 13, 2011, 10:08 PM
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rhei wrote:
Unfortunately, my experience is that, too many route setters lack the skill or the experience to create such routes. Instead, they simply throw in reachy moves in an attempt to make mediocre routes more difficult.

This.

I frequent two gyms. One has crap route setters that do the above. Every route is easy bottom, easy top, ridiculous crux (for the grade). The other has well thought out routes. While that doesn't mean the crux routes are undoable at any height (I'm not as short as you but I'm shorter than everyone I climb with), it is frustrating when you are learning. At the second gym, I always feel like a route where I can pull off the ground is doable, even if I can't do it yet. Keep practicing. You've gotten some good advice in this thread.

Also, go outside. It will open your eyes to what climbing really is when you can grab/step/smear anywhere.

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