The Rock Climber’s Training Manual is now available order yours here!

To flash my enemies’ routes, have them fail miserably on mine, and be the example of sexual perfection to their women.
– Todd Skinner’s tongue-in-cheek meaning of life

Performance topics include…

Janelle Anderson sending Swahili Slang, 12c, RRG, KY.

Janelle Anderson sending Swahili Slang (5.12c) at the RRG, KY. ©Mark Anderson




BOULDERING Articles related to Performance:

  • Don’t Call it a Comeback!As most avid readers know, my family and I spent the last 3 years living in the Florida Panhandle, far from climbing. In May, we made it back to Colorado, and our home in the mountains. These last 3 years have been psychologically challenging, and it seemed to be a massive struggle just to maintain my climbing performance, let alone improve. I always planned/hoped that the training I accomplished in Florida would manifest itself when I was finally able to live closer to climbing.So this fall is our first full season back in the mountains, with good conditions. We trained hard and trained well, and I picked out a project that would represent a significant milestone for me; Prime Time to Shine, a 5.14b (8C) at the Primo Wall in Clear Creek Canyon, CO. Read more…
  • Use Video to Dial-in your Beta The advent of inexpensive, compact digital imaging technology has been a boon to outdoor sports. Now, nearly everyone can get Galen Rowell-worthy images of their adventures in the wildest of places; and products like the Go Pro allow for first-person videos that required a professional camera crew in the past. I’m surprised and a little confused that more sport climbers don’t take advantage of this technology to boost their climbing performance. Modern digital point and shoot cameras can easily record high definition video that can help you remember those complex sequences. Though I’ve climbed all over the country, I’ve only ever seen Mark and I recording our attempts at the crag in this way. Read more…
  •  Sport Alpine Climbing and Siege Sport Climbing  I’m currently reading Greg Crouch’s fascinating book “Enduring Patagonia”. I’ve always had this thought in the back of my mind that when the kids are grown up I’ll go climb Cerro Torre for “fun”.  After reading Crouch’s book I now realize the folly of that idea.  Crouch spent 68 days trying and failing to climb Cerro Torre’s infamous Compressor Route before he eventually succeeded.  Over the course of those 68 days he attempted the route 14 times!  I’ve pondered that number quite a bit and I’m having trouble truly comprehending it. It’s a credit to Crouch’s determination and perseverance. During my currently-hybernating alpine career, I’ve never tried a route more than twice, and even that was extremely rare.  On Devil’s Thumb we were within a few hundred vertical feet of the summit on our first attempt before the weather completely shut us down, so we bailed and returned to base camp and finished the climb a few days later.  Even considering my time as a sport climber, I can only come up with seven routes that I’ve tried 14 or more times.  Read more…
  •  Smarter, Not Harder  Generally speaking, its a good idea to try hard, but what does that really mean?  Many years ago my brother Mike had a chance to spend some time with Tommy Caldwell, so Mike asked him what he does to train for climbing, in hopes that they would discuss proper set lengths, number of repetitions, etc.  Tommy’s response was, “just try really hard, all the time”.  End of discussion.  I’ve always thought this was interesting advice to give to a total stranger and it brings to mind a classic legend.  An aspiring climber hired a local wunderkind to “coach” him.  The coaching session consisted of aforementioned wunderkind yelling “pull harder” throughout the session, right up to the point of catastrophic tendon rupture in the client.  Read more…

If you have questions or comments about Performance, please post them on the RCTM Forum.  We will try to respond as soon as possible.


One thought on “Performance

  1. Pingback: How to Become an Expert Climber in Five Simple Lessons (Lesson 3) | The Rock Climber's Training Manual

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