So you want to climb harder? Same! I have revealed some secrets I uncovered from my own journey to climbing harder; They have come from professional coaches, and my own discoveries.
How To Climb Harder? To climb harder you must try harder and keep trying hard for a long time, but you can also maximise the technical and tactical advantages available to you very fast for an instant boost in your climbing performance!
I Have only Climbed 8a but the insights I have for you are applicable to any stage of your climbing, as i have seen with our in person climbing sessions.
This list gives you 5 ACTIONABLE steps to boost your climbing RIGHT NOW.
1. Climbing rituals
If you dont already have a climbing ritual, there is so much untapped potential for you to access, im really excited for you!
While strength takes MONTHS and technique just as long, the way to instantly CLIMB HARDER is through development of the your mental strength.
Because the techniques like the Climbing ritual can INSTANTLY boost your climbing ability, its my number one way to quickly cultivate success in your climbing.
What is it?
So what is a climbing ritual anyway? A climbing ritual is a routine you develop to perform certain mental training / preperation Techniques. You specifically perform certain techniques like deep breaths to give yourself a mental edge before you set off on your climb.
The power of climbing rituals is the fact you optimise your mental state immediately with certain techniques and boost your climbing ability much higher than you could by investing the time into strength training.
In fact, without a optimal mental state there is no chace we will succeed, even if were plenty strnong enough for the climb.
This because apparent to me when iIwas competing in local competitions.
As a well known climber i felt a lot of external pressure and climber REALLY bad! i forgot how to use my feet and tried to muscle my way through the competiton.
One competition later, i decided i didnt really care how i did, i just had fun with my friends and was in a MUCH better mental state, i would describe it as a confident calm.
The outcome wasnt important, i just focused on climbing well and enjoyed myself.
I won that competition, climbing 24 out of 25 boulders flash, and the one boulder second go.
This showed me how powerful and important our minds are for climbing, and ive used climbing rituals ever since to ensure all my performances are as good as that.
Perhaps you struggle with confidence before you climb?
Well theres a technique for for that you can impliment into your ritual to completely revolutionise how well you climb, and the success it brings you!
- My personal Ritual consists of Deep breathing to calm myself and get my mind ‘into my body’ so i have the best chance of entering the flow state when i climb.
- Step two is a ‘buddy check’ for safety and this boosts my confidence knowing everything is setup correctly and theres minimal chance something will go wrong with my knot, harness or belayer.
This allows me to fully commit to the climb and not worry about falling, which invariably leads to actually falling off less because your not caught up with the fear of falling, you can FULLY commit to the climb.
- Then I end the routine with a smile to my belayer.
This is a POWERFUL auto-suggestion technique to boost my mood and create the perfect mental atmosphere for you and I to perform our best on the rock.
The best thing about your climbing ritual is you can perform it in under a minute, just as you prepare for climbing, because its designed to fit in with your exsisting climbing routine like putting on your shoes and reading the route.
To make your own check out the link to my post on it!
2. Select your Partners Tactically
Okay maybe this sounds a bit weird, to choose who you climb with based on anything but wether your friends or not but hear me out!
Have you ever noticed the phenomenon of your climbing ability one day being through the roof when you climb with certain people?
While i didnt want to admit it, it slowly became apparent to me how much better i perform around certain peers and types of people.
And im not joking about this. Genuinely it has made the difference between sending my projects and then not even being able to repeat them.
Heres why; Were all Extrinsically motivated to some degree, and being surrounded by people we want to impress or get respect from no doubt makes us climb harder and gives more focus.
When im climbing on my own, if i dont really want it i will likely give it 60/70% effort, and let go of holds i could have stuck because ‘you know, whatever it doesnt really matter’.
When you climb surrounded by your peers your likely to try much harder, and therefore your chance of success is also increased.
It works because you want to succeed in front of them, so the climb matters more to you; you will give the climbing more focus instead of just mindlessly resting before another go.
Secondly, surrounding yourself with confident and outgoing people, or just people you feel most comfortable failing in front of will actually make you fall less because there confidence or whatever motivating characteristic they have will ‘rub off’ onto you and positively impact your climbing ability.
‘Tell Me Who You Hang Around With, and I Will Tell You Who You Will Become’
while this quote is a little out of context its the same principle, you surround yourself with confident people or just straight up crushers and you will DEFINETLY climb better.
3. Small Fish
This isnt some weird secret diet where you eat small fish for ‘gainz’.
im refrencing the small fish big pond saying.
Again while i have completely misread the context, the idea is you want to surround yourself with people that are MUCH BETTER THAN YOURSELF.
While it might hurt your ego, remaining the ‘Big fish’ at your local gym or climbing group will probably cause you to plateau or maybe its already happened.
In fact the two big breakthroughs in my climbing plateaus were when i joined new climbing groups and supprounded myself with better and more experienced climbers.
I quickly became the small fish and my motivation to improve shot through the roof.
The saying about ‘tell me who you hang around with’ is also applicable to this situation.
You allready know if you want to improve you must surround yourself with better people, and this is exactly what happens when you decide to become the small fish again and climb with new people!
4. One more try
Imagine the parallel dimension where theres a version of youself that gave one more go, 1 or 2% more effort each time they climbed or trained.
Think about how much harder than you they climb!
All those one more goes for years on end is why the pros are pro.
So unfortunately this isnt an ‘instant’ hack to make you send your project.
But let me explain something, the future you thats an apsolute wad is created right now in the present.
Trying ‘one more time’ is the exact behaveour you need to do now that will create that crusher in the future.
You only become your highest potential self through the day to day actions you take, so once you adopt this ‘one more’ mindset with your climbing, you have basically become the pro you want to be.
The difference in your climbing ability when your properly fueled up or not is massive.
Im no nutritionist i just have my own experience to go by, and i know;
Having an adequate store of carbohydrates is ESSENTIAL for any amount of sustained effort.
not being properly Hydrated has been proven to reduce your endurance by anywhere from 7 to 60%, thats INSANE.
The athletes in Strength sports like bouldering saw a decrease in there Ability when they lost only 3% of there body water!
Imagine if there was an excersise or routine that would make you 60% stronger in a day.
no one would not do it!
Stay Hydrated People!
Im not Qualified enough to recommend you nutrition, as my own nutrition is a weakness in my lifestyle, but i can TOTALLY recommend the 8 week ‘Keto Diet plan’ from Rachel Roberts.
Or world class climber Dave Mcleod who also Vouches for how effective the Ketogenic Diet was for him in reaching new levels in his climbing.
Okay everyone, I hope you can implement these into your climbing for more personal success!
If you have any questions feel free to leave a comment!
I enjoy writing these and i hope it brought you some value, consider checking out my other posts if so.
Im determined to bring you all the information i can on becoming the best climber you can!