Round 172

Hi Eric, In preparation for a climbing trip I’m doing the training cycle described in your TFC book. The first phase is straightforward, but I’m having trouble designing my workouts for the second phase. Powerful bouldering scares me because of the dynos and the hard crimping. So what exercise can I do in that power phase that will allow me to develop more power without hurting myself? I’m already doing the beginner workout from your website, but if there’s anything I can add to that I’d do it. –Ben (California)

Hi Ben, Developing power is important for advancement, but you must ease into it gradually. I think the prefer intro exercise is “power pull-ups” (aka bar-to-chest pulls). Here’s a short video:

Once you can do both of these well (8 to 10 power pull-ups with chest bump….and, say, 5 pull-ups with ~20% of body weight added), you can begin to dabble on the Campus Board. What I suggest is doing a simple hand-over-hand ladder up the largest rungs (jump off from top careful). Rest ~3 minutes and repeat. Two to 4 sets of this will raise your power another notch. Again, this process will take months not weeks, so give it time. Do the above exercises twice per week on your climbing days.

Hi Eric! My questions is about hangboarding. I train on my beastmaker 1000 and I can do 20mm edges with +20kg or 14mm with +4kg on the 7sec/53sec routine. I’m wondering what would be better: smaller edges with less weight or bigger edges with more weight. –Maarten (Netherlands)

Hello Maarten! Both programs you describe are good. I like using heavy weights and a medium to large hold since it hurts skin less (although this may not be an issue with Beastmaker). It is good to sometimes train on much smaller holds, 6mm to 10mm edges and small pockets, without weight to get used to holding very small holds. However for pure strength training I believe in using 14mm to 20mm edge with heavy weights. 7/53×3 is excellent protocal!

Hi Eric, I recently tore something in my left lower lat muscle while doing weighted hangs. I’m doing some light rehab exercises and stretching a few times a day to get blood flow to that area, but I’m wondering what else can I do to help healing? – Kevin

Hi Kevin, Sorry to hear about your injury…but I’ve been there, done that! I actually get myself some kind of a lower lat tweak about once every year or two. Sometimes it resolves in a week, but in a bad case it’s taken close to a month to fully heal this painful injury. Of course, anything that gets blood flow to the area is good. I recommend lots of foam rolling, gentle stretching, massage, and perhaps a heating pad or sauna. Once good healing is apparent, begin some basic training…slow, easy pull-ups and big hold climbing. Hope this helps!

Hello Eric, We are a bouldering gym in Colorado, and we’d like to build a great H.I.T wall at 45 degree with a 12′ kicker and 8′ wide x 12′ tall. Could you provide us some guidance on the system holds and training? –Fabrizio (Colorado)

Hello Fabrizio, Here’s a link to the ideal training system for my HIT protocol–It’s optimized for 50 degrees past vert, but it will work fine on a 45-degree wall.

Here’s another useful link with wall design and training tips for the HIT System:

Have fun, get strong!

Hi Eric, I really enjoy listening to all of the podcasts that you do…and learning from such a humble coach. Thank you! My climbing goal is to do a 5.12c/d by the end of the season. Currently, I am able to do a 5.11c/d comfortably, and I’ve been able to get to the top of a short 25ft 5.12c route with falling a few times on the way up. While trying a new and challenging route I feel like my strength is up to par but my technique is lacking…which leads to my question. I’ve recently picked up your Training For Climbing book as well as Mastermind. I’m looking at your other books…and wondering if there’s one that might help me further? –Kev

Hey Kev, The two books you have are great, and TFC is an important long-term resource. If there’s one other book to pick up…it’s Maximum Climbing–IMO the most powerful book on climbing mastery ever written! Check it out here.

Good luck…and go get those 5.12+s!