Training Tips for Climbers: Get Off The Fingerboard!
If I could go back and tell my younger self about strength training, I would definitely talk to 18yr old Cam about reducing the amount of fingerboard training I completed in a week.
Like many climbers, the fingerboard was my introduction to structured training for climbing. It was a tool that was easy to use, and I could objectively measure my progress. It became very addictive to see my numbers go up and feel strong on the wall however, there came a point where I would put fingerboard training over actually getting out and climbing.
Here are x3 things I wish the younger me had focused on, instead of fingerboard training:
1- Getting outdoors to climb on real rock
I have been guilty of prioritising training over climbing outdoors. It is important to remember that, for the majority of us, we are training to get better at climbing. Therefore, we need to take time away from the fingerboard to get outdoors and learn to utilize our new strength gains.
2- Working on my weaknesses
Strength training has always been something I have enjoyed and would prioritise over everything else, usually neglecting other aspects of my training, such as power endurance training or technical practice. I have seen some of the biggest gains in my climbing performance by working on these neglected areas over the past couple of years.
3- Flexibility training
I have previously found flexibility training a long and tedious process with little return, however after trialling some of Coach Josh’s flexibility sessions my mind has been changed. The approach Josh has taken to flexibility training is fun and engaging, not only that but I have been rewarded with big improvements in my range of motion and mobility whilst climbing. This is something I wish I had started training when I was 18 yrs old!