One of the interesting things about being able to return to bouldering areas year on year, is the ability to see change. Change in the climbing environment. Change in the boulders. Change in the community, and of course change in yourself. For me, seeing the changes in myself, and the climbing areas often provide the most reflective moments of any trip. Ultimately this is what keeps me coming back to climbing for more.
From a performance standpoint, returning to boulders you have tried through the years and not done is always a chance to learn. It can be a satisfying moment, seeing a move which was once simply too hard, brought into possibility in a matter of moments. This realisation is without doubt one of my favourite aspects of climbing. It’s also a feeling which is only given with hard work, and an attention to the detail of the move itself. Sometimes it’s a simple thing; “I need to be stronger on pinches”. Other times it’s more subtle; “my body needs to be strong in this quite specific position which only uses this tiny muscle”. But there is always something to learn. When you return to the boulder for the 5th year, and it’s still not possible, you begin to ask more questions; “is this a technical thing?”, “do I need to spend more time on this style of hold or move?”. Finding ways to improve for these problems is what keeps me going, and brings me back to these areas. The broader problem solving aspect of how to improve can be very addictive. You constantly want to know if you’ve improved, addressed weaknesses and created new strengths. Vecchio Leone in Brione was the problem that gave me this experience on this trip to Switzerland. My ability on pinches relative to my last attempts years prior is night and day, and I suppose I have the School Room's famous problem ‘Milk It’ to thank for this. Cheers Malc.
Seeing changes in your mentality is perhaps even more satisfying than changes in physicality. Being content with spending several days on a pr
We recently spoke to the Moonboard legend Hoseok Lee about his training, climbing on the Moonboard and dream boulders. You might have seen his outrageous training feats and hard climbing on Instagram, so be prepared for more psych. Rea on to check out what he had to say!
Posted: December 05, 2020Categories: Bouldering Diary
by Martin Keller
It all started way back on a cold day in November 2004 when I had been able to send the second part of the line for my second 8A-boulder. The first part of the line (Unendliche Geschichte 2, 8A+) with its crazy river polished slopers always puzzled me. The friction was so poor that I had not been able to really pull on those holds and constantly dryfired off somewhere.
The gamechanger was a session in 2007 when the holds got fully condensed while a thunderstorm passed by. The friction was suddenly amazing! It turned out that these polished holds had way better friction when they were totally humid! That was it! A few thunderstorms later and I had climbed the first part as well. Instantly I started to try to link the two parts. But the first move of the second part kept throwing me off on link. I did go back every year since, and came close many times but somehow never managed to stick that move. I really needed good friction (humid and warm) but eventually the weather always turned “too good” and/or I had been sidetracked with other projects.
This spring things were different though! Despite approaching my 43rd birthday I was clearly in the best shape of my life and “suddenly” I had been able to send several hard multi-year-nemesis-projects of mine like Riot Act, low, 8C-ish in the Frankenjura , Ill Trill 8B+ and New Baseline, 8B+ in Magic Wood. So when warm and wet conditions arrived late this spring, I was super interested to see how that shape would change my “Never Ending Story”. I immediately could feel that everything went way smoother and after a few sessions I finally did stick that nemesis-move on link! That I slipped on the last move to the top was a real pity – but I just had been super happy to have done that move that had shut me down for the last 13 years.
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