ivan lisica

  1. Head games: Mind control – the ultimate skill by IVAN LISICIA

    Head games: Mind control – the ultimate skill Do you ever feel that time stretches during certain crux sections? Sometimes you need to slow the rhythm down so you can execute everything precisely, just right. Seconds can seem like minutes for those few moves, but it isn´t a good thing. The more time you have, the more likely you'll start thinking (too much) and eventually mess up. I have this lovely project that's been fooling me around for years. Although the climbing style is athletic, there are two incredibly technical sections pretty high up, and this is where my head feels like it could explode. Holds are small, body positions are weird, feet are non existing and placing them is nearly as hard as grabbing the next hold. To climb either of these sections I have to be accurate, light, strong, agressive, tender, uncompromised, extraordinary, blessed with cool temps and dry north wind, free of lactic acid despite the previous 30-40 moves and, above all, positive and optimistic although I've been getting my ass kicked here for seasons. Sounds like an impossible task? Well, let's just call it tough. In general, I don´t suffer from negative thoughts while climbing. If I am in regular fight mode, my mind is empty. I just switch autopilot on, get into the flow and try the best I can. But in these two sections, I admit losing my focus pretty often. I would have the strange feeling of time slowing and of there being an uncomfortable silence which you're desperately trying to fill, like being on a first date and not knowing what to say. Trying to move through the crux with so many thoughts buzzing around my head was impossible. I knew I had to find my focus and self confidence again, so I experimented with different mental approaches. At first and instinctively, I just wanted to shout something as loud as I could. In the past, this had been an effective way of lowering the pressure and getting a short confidence boost, but this time it didn't match the climbing style. It

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    By Ivan Lisica   Just got back from a huge bolting meeting at virgin canyon of river ?ikola, one hour away from my hometown. The potential of this place is overwhelming and I question myself how it is possible that I have never heard about this place till recently. Jerry Moffat wrote in Revelations that in a certain period his rest days were reserved for soloing. My free days are often spent in the exploration of new areas and despite living like this for almost two decades it is still possible to find surprises like ?ikola almost at my doorstep. This fact is unbelieveable but I enjoy it. Trying to imagine that all this endless rock is known, all crags bolted, all boulders brushed and me as just a guidebook user sounds impossible. Once you feel the excitement of facing the unknown terrain, creativity of setting the new lines and process of doing first ascents there is no way back. It becomes pure addiction and hardly anything can fulfill you more than this. Big bolting events are getting more and more often in this part of Europe. The potential of this region was never questionable so I knew it was a matter of time before they start. These events are impressive because a huge work can be done in just a days and massive areas are opened almost instantly. All day long on ?ikola we had a lot of fun as a crew and motivated each other to work hard like there´s no tommorow. If these events would continue for a decade or so, I can imagine that we could even run out of virgin rock which sounds pretty terrifying. On the other hand since bolting events are usually about developing 'the best' areas I hope it will always be possible to find some small untouched sectors as a fresh dose of new terrain for addicted locals.

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