HOW TO: Rest While Climbing Effectively
Updated: Jun 13, 2019
Resting is a skill that is one of the most important aspects of climbing efficiently and effectively yet isn't talked about as much as it should be. Resting isn't just about shaking out or chalking up, it's an approach to climbing. Climbing tense or tight is a sure fire way to not climbing to your potential.
Resting is all about staying relaxed and loose while climbing and not getting in your own head. You want to maintain tension throughout your body but shouldn't climb tense or nervous. Climbing in a mental state that is focused and relaxed will help you tremendously on routes or boulder problems.
Breathing while climbing is HUGE, it helps you get oxygen throughout your body and slows down that inevitable forearm pump. Breathing will help keep your heart rate down which will keep your hands from sweating as much making it so you don't have to chalk up as much. So relax, breath and stay focused to optimize your climbing performance.
Also when you are climbing you either want to be climbing or resting there is no middle. Like Yoda said, " Do or do not there is no try" that should be your approach to resting while on a route or boulder problem.
You want to make sure that you aren't wasting effort by "half resting" or looking up at your next sequence and hesitating about how to do it. Simply, rest when you get a chance and plan your next sequence so when you start climbing again you can climb efficiently and effectively.
If you don't have a sequence or plan when you start climbing you will have to figure it out the beta as you go which will slow down your climbing and keep you from efficiently moving through hard sequences.
Chalk up less has been a phrase made popular by friction labs, but I think its a good attitude to take when your climbing on a route or boulder problem. You don't want to be spending extra time putting chalk on one hand while pumping out the other if you don't have to.
That's one of the reasons I love putting liquid chalk on before a long boulder problem or route because then for the longer portion of the start of the climb I don't have to even thinking about chalking up. Which helps me get to the rest of the route or boulder quicker and less pumped.
So don't stop climbing and chalk up for no reason, if you are breathing well, still have chalk and know your sequence there is no reason to stop to chalk up. If you are pumped you can shakeout and try to dig in with your toes to drive your hips into the wall to take some pressure off your fingers.
Climbing is all about climbing efficiently and saving every ounce of energy possible. So when you are climbing remember to read your route and have a plan about what you are going to do, stay focused, relax and keep your breathing under control, rest or climb nothing in between, chalk up less when possible, and try hard no matter what.
Like I always say if you want to climb harder you gotta climb smarter. If you have ANY questions go down to the bottom of the page and comment it below or go to my Instagram and shoot me a DM or send me an email. I'd love to answer your questions and or just say hi.
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