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Training

Technique

rock climbing by the sea in Corsica.

Quit Floundering—Turn Your Feet Into Precision Instruments With These 10 Tips

The best climbers aren't always the strongest, they have the best technique. In this first installment of our new Quick Hits series, pro coach Neil Gresham teaches maximizing footholds.

Injury Prevention

Fix That Aching Elbow!

Elbow problems are the most common climbing injuries after fingers and shoulders. If you are suffering nagging elbow pain, there's a road to recovery.

Nutrition

You Start To Lose 25% Of Your Strength At Age 25. Here’s What To Do About That.

Your body begins to decline sooner than you like, and by age 50 your dietary requirements are quite different than they were when you were younger. But you can beat back aging to some extent by following this advice.

Safety

Gear

all around trad rock shoe

The Rock Shoe Bible and Survival Guide

Stop wasting your money on shoes that don't fit or are painful or fail you. Don't be disappointed again. Here's how to buy what' just right, just for you.

People

Mountaineer Aleister Crowley in 1902, smoking pipe.

Aleister Crowley, The Wickedest Climber Ever?

He made the first attempts on K2 and Kanchenjunga, and was a visionary rock climber putting up difficult routes in the late 1800s, but his climbing later took a backseat to his unsavory reputation as an occultist and sex fiend.

Knots

Using trace eight knot to connect climbing harness to rope.

Essential Climbing Knots — The Complete Guide

Seven essential climbing knots to learn first: The Trace Eight, Prusik, Clove Hitch, Ring Bend, Double Fisherman's, Girth Hitch, and Figure-Eight On A Bight.

Outside
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Gaia GPS

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Trailforks

Discover the best trails in the world.

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Outside TV

Unlock 600+ hours of ad-free films and series.

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Our Reader's Most Popular Article

You Can Get Stronger Than Ever In Your 40s, 50s and Even 60s. We’re Not Kidding. Here’s How

Check out Neil Gresham's author page.

You’re in your late 40s, 50s or 60s, keen as ever to crank, and unsure of whether to focus on strength or endurance. Your only certainty is that you want to avoid injury.

Over 50s, don’t sell your hangboards. The picture is extremely optimistic, especially for doing steep, hard sport climbs. Take it from me: I climbed my hardest sport route (a new 8c+ / 5.14c at Malham Cove in the UK) at the age of 46.

Historically, a host of factors, from anecdotes to misleading literature, have conspired to make older climbers fear strength training. Most veterans will have come across the depressing stats about age-related performance decline. In brief, we are told to expect, from age 35-40 onwards: a significant decline in muscle strength and power; to be able to handle lower volumes of training; and to need longer recovery between sessions. Additionally, we’re warned that when older athletes stop training, their fitness deteriorates more quickly than before, while regaining it becomes harder. Great.

Over the years, many climbing coaches have accepted these depressing stats and been prophets of doom about strength training for older climbers. A compounding factor was that many older climbers became injured back in the late 1980s and 1990s by training strength, leading me to write an article for this very magazine around the turn of the century advising them not to use hangboards and campus boards and to default to endurance training.

Over the years, many climbing coaches have accepted these depressing stats and been prophets of doom about strength training for older climbers.

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