at-home solutions for climbing-specific training sessions

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  • #39722

    I’m currently in the strength phase of the intermediate rock plan, and while I’ve managed to figure out an at-home solution to the hangboard repeater workouts I’m not so sure how to best mimick the physical demands of the following types of sessions while stuck at home with pretty basic equipment (i.e. metolius rock rings, pinch block, kettlebells, resistance bands, pullup bar): limit bouldering, outdoor mileage days, and power endurance. Here are some of my ideas, which I’d love to get some feedback on:

    For limit bouldering, I figured a reasonable equivalent would be to do the max hangboard workout from Josh’s plan along with max strength consisting of 4-6 sets each of weighted pullups, goblet squats, TGU, and/or some other climbing-specific exercises.

    For outdoor mileage days, I was thinking of doing an ARC-style extended hangboard workout, similar to what Scott Semple mentioned in the “Continuous Climbing At Home” forum thread, with an emphasis on working the forearms and not straining the fingers too much at all. On top of that, I was thinking of doing a solid core workout, and perhaps some Aussie-style pullups and shoulder/single-leg exercises.

    Lastly, for power endurance I was thinking of just doing another phase of hangboard repeater workouts with a little bit more intensity, and doing 4-6 sets of frenchies to improve power endurance in the pulling muscles. The only thing I’m wary of is that, in Josh’s plan, these workouts are sometimes combined in the same day with an AM limit bouldering workout (which, in these circumstances, would be a max hang workout), so I’d have to be extremely careful not to over-stress my fingers. Although, I suppose this would be a concern even if I was doing these workouts on the bouldering wall anyway.

    This post became a bit long, but I very much appreciate anybody who reads this through and takes the time to respond. Despite the less-than-ideal circumstances with respect to training and climbing, I’m determined to make the most of this time and come out stronger.

Posted In: Climbing

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    Nick K on #39731

    I think if you build the volume carefully, and modulate the intensity appropriately, you can hangboard with very high frequency without injuring yourself if you’re not also rock climbing.

    I say that having once (due to a strange set of life circumstances which made this seem reasonable) had a ~10 week period where I front squatted to an easy max (and did back off sets) and hangboarded every weekday morning (as every coach in here faints). There were some supplementary exercises involved, but that was the gist of the program. This was during the winter, so I was ice climbing one weekend day, and Sunday was off or easy short run and homework. Obviously I came out of that extremely strong. I built a huge amount of work capacity on that strength over the summer, and built to a crag day where I sent 9×5.12 a/b in a day. I’m not saying this was the most intelligent way to get there, but it certainly worked. I was early 30s at the time, working and in grad school, so it’s not like I had early 20s recovery either.

    It was, however, an obvious low point in my aerobic fitness.

    If you want to read more in-depth on my madness, here’s the training beta article I wrote afterwards:

    julie.morter on #39738

    I am having the same problem- not a tone of advice here, but I am halfway through the intermediate training plan. We have been hang boarding every 2 days and it seems to be going ok, although we do think that to really build power we might even need an extra day off in each week? But we aren’t building endurance, which isn’t great for when outdoors starts.
    I also like that lower intensity but less rest hang board routine you are mentioning and we are thinking of just making the best substitutions we could: CC workouts would be the ARC one, limit bouldering might be the low end of PE, regular fingerboard repeaters would be the high end of PE and then max hangs would be max hangs. We would just follow the schedule with this substitution. I can let you know how it goes in 10 weeks, ha!
    But we have never done a training program before so to be honest we no longer have any idea what we are doing and mostly expect the next month to be somewhat lost effort for training and best case will just be keeping what we have. We don’t have enough knowledge to re-jig this whole training plan into a fingerboard routine.

    I do think we would need to add more pull-ups in, maybe on the bouldering (but not bouldering) day, because that lock-off strength will go away fast.

    vik.waghray on #40132

    Thanks for the responses, guys!

    @Nick K – That’s an awesome recovery story and it’s encouraging to see the kind of results that commitment to a hangboard program can yield. I’m still experimenting a bit with respect to weekly hang volume but I think I’ve got a decent system figured out so far for this training phase. I will keep your advice in mind as I continue. I’m hoping things open up this summer so I can apply the hangboarding gains toward quality cragging volume and then tackle my alpine rock objectives.

    @julie.morter – I agree with you about power sessions, you want to be fresh going into them so take the appropriate amount of rest you feel you need. As for endurance, try doing a high volume of hangs on a large/easy set of holds (should be roughly 40-50% of your max). Check out the app Crimpd, they have hangboard workouts you can do for each climbing training modality (aerobic capacity, power, power endurance, etc). I’ve found their stuff to be incredibly helpful. With smart training I honestly think we could come out of this stronger. Personally, I feel the main dropoff will be my technique and lead head, but after a full day or two back out I expect to regain those skills. Anyway, it seems you have a system worked out for translating the workouts to hangboard sessions so best of luck with it! Keep us posted.

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