Anytime we feel stuck or in a climbing rut, we love getting back to basics. Our wardrobe is full of functional basics – white tees, blue jeans, black dress – and our arsenal of bouldering basics are just as key as building blocks to awesomeness.
Here are some bouldering basics and best practices to keep in mind for your next send:
- Warm it up, stretch it out: Properly warming up before climbing maximizes your time on the rock/wall by increasing blood flow to the working muscles, which results in more limber joints and less risk of injury.
- Protect and respect your finger pulleys: The tiny tendons in your finger that do all the heavy lifting are the most vulnerable parts of your body when climbing. Tape up these bad boys in case of injury to prevent further injury.
- Maintain straight arms (they’ll thank you later!)
- Keep your hips close to the rock/wall: Climbing with your hips glued to the wall decreases the distance you have to move to get to the next hold, maximizes the effectiveness of your footholds, and minimizes the amount of force in your arms that you need to hold yourself up. This is true whether the wall is vertical or overhung.
- Believe in the Rule of Three: The “3 Points of Contact” rule can help you be mindful of your foot placements. In most instances, it takes 3 points of contact to stay upright and on a wall. So, 3 hands or feet must be touching at all times, except occasionally when you are making a move.
- Grab crashpads and friends (the more the merrier) to catch your falls and make it a party!
- Have a blast!