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Onsighting, fear and importance
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Aug 25, 2013, 1:43 PM
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Registered: Aug 25, 2013
Posts: 1

Onsighting, fear and importance
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I've only been climbing for a few years, but I've enjoyed it so far and haven't had terribly many problems sport leading at my level. Grabbing the book has helped me identify some problem areas to get better, and so far so good. I've only just begun trad and it's helping me with that journey as well.

I've never had the same passion for onsighting as others. It has never given me motivation. It seems a bit like a pissing contest, if I'm honest. But that might just stem from the real point of this post.

I have my irrational fear episodes only when onsighting. It usually shows up as taking when I don't really need to, just to solve a tricky problem and get back to full strength. Sometimes I give it multiple takes, just to get the move right. After a climb or even watching someone do it once I can climb things at my level without this irrational fear ever showing up. Probably because I "know where the holds are". It's just the unknown factor that freaks me out. I take my time, and generally "figure out" the problem and have probably never onsighted anything within a full grade of my max. I'll take regularly on climbs that are well within my level, just to be safe. In my mind it's a great call, but I'm wondering if it's holding me back somehow? Does anyone have a similar experience? Is this manifestation of fear something I need to overcome to enjoy tougher climbs? Ultimately I'm not too worried because I'm having loads of fun. It's just getting to the point where I never even attempt an onsight, and just go for the send and enjoy the climb as much as I can.

Once in a while the ego swings its head around when I speak with higher level climbers who give me lip about taking or not trying to onsight, but I ignore it. I'd rather be safe and then send it on my second attempt.

Should I be pushing past this barrier? Is there any reason to expose myself to extra risks just to say I onsighted it? Isn't that what the whole ego thing is about? I just want to have fun, and my first attempt at a climb is occasionally less fun than the follow-ups if I'm worrying about onsighting.

Thanks for reading guys. Sorry for the long post! It's been bugging me for a while and it would be nice to get some unbiased feedback / critique for this. This is a great forum, and I just stopped lurking to post this one.

Forums : Clubs : Mental Training: The Rock Warrior's Way


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