Photo by Sam Challeat.
Squamish Climbing Magazine had the chance to catch up with Sean McColl on a topic that we know he is all too familiar: Campus Board Training.
The following is an article written by Sean McColl.
Fingerboards are always a fun discussion on the best way to train and the best way to design so you keep getting stronger. This design is up there and is worth a look
In follow up to Luke Zimmerman‘s article on Training your Finger Strength, I wanted to address dead-hanging on a hangboard and the variables of time, maximum weight, and the width of the hold you are hanging on.
Unless you have fingers of steel, most climbers will be training their finger strength with two hands on a moderately sized edge. My preferred edge to start with is about the size of the outer mid-sized edge on the old Metolius Simulator board because I can still use engaged hands (otherwise called ‘half-crimp’ in second video) and still maintain good technique with my body. I have only seen the hangboard featured in the videos below one time, but they appear very effective at decreasing the size of hold you are using as you see gains in your finger strength.
Every individual climber will have some specific area of their climbing that holds them back. For many it is fear of falling. For others it is lack of tactics and strategy. Maybe it’s just an inability to try hard. Some climbers have terrible footwork, others lack sufficient upper body strength. Maybe a climber fails because they hold on too tight, or can’t pace themselves.
Whatever the specific area is, each individual will improve their climbing the most by targeting that weakness. However, if we examine climbers as a whole, is it possible to distinguish one area which is the most important? A single factor that if improved, will yield paralleled improvements on real rock for every climber? I say there is. I say there is one particular thing that is the most important. A factor that separates the elites from the rest of the pack. It is any area that every climber will benefit from training . I’m talking about finger strength.