Stretching for bouldering…

Just found a really good site with information on stretching techniques for bouldering. Here are the illustrations for the recommended moves…

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http://www.rockclimbing.com/Articles/Training_and_Technique/Finger_Back_Arm_Strength_18.html

At the moment, i’m not doing enough stretching, before or after bouldering. It can take a few days to recover sometimes and this is likely down to poor stretching technique. A bit more time on this should help a lot.

There’s also a lot of good information in there about finger strength. It does suggest 3-5 years for fingers to become reliably stronger, given it is not just the muscles, but the tendons which need to grow. The tendon is the main part of the finger and this apparently needs longer. So, no miracle cures for not being able to do that impossible French traverse!

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Bouldering pics…

Another good session of bouldering and more progress on the main central boulder. I can feel the fingers getting stronger each time and I can now do a couple of lift ups on the middle campus board rungs, with only the tips of the fingers for leverage.

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Bouldering & shoes…!

Wow, i’m finding muscles I had forgotten were there!

24 hours ago, I went bouldering at The Warehouse climbing centre, in Gloucester. It a very good facility and it also offers a range of vertical climbing areas, for use with fixed ropes and free climbing. There’s also a kids area + cafe and bar, with pool table.

Bouldering is a style of rock climbing where you climb around a room without a rope, where there are lots of holds to use, with thick crash mats on the floor. The idea isn’t about going up, but mainly around, practising the techniques used in more advanced rock climbing.

Practising techniques doesn’t sound to strenuous but bloody hell, it was a good work out! We were in there about an hour and after that, there was no way I could have done another route, my fingers had nothing left in them.

So, what parts of me hurt? Well, it’s mainly my upper back, just below the shoulder blades, and stomach muscles. My arms are generally buzzing but not quite aching. Shoulders are tight but ok. I thought my fingers would be bad but they seem fine. My achilles tendon also seems to be aching slightly, probably due to being tensed so much.

I also hired some proper climbing shoes, which fit tightly around the foot. These really helped get good holds on the surfaces and i’ve been doing a bit of tinternet research into getting some, rather than paying £2.50 each time.

So, the best deal i’ve found so far is from Go Outdoors, with an amazing 68% off some Montrail Orbit shoes, for £18.97 (original price was £60). The best shoes i’ve found with some really good reviews are the La Sportiva Miura VS, from Banana Fingers, which come in at £97 (down from £102.49). These are out of my price range but look amazing! The shoes I hired last night were La Sportiva and had excellent triple Velcro straps, which helped to mould the shoe around the foot.

Bouldering was brilliant and can’t wait to go again next week!

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