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Weekend Whipper: If You Skip the Helmet, You Best Fall Like a Cat

"It resulted in a somersault of Olympic quality and a pretty swollen elbow."

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Readers, please send your whipper videos, information, and any lessons learned to Anthony Walsh, awalsh@outsideinc.com.

Intentional footwork and proper rope management … sometimes it’s not enough. Even if the rope isn’t wrapped around your leg, an oddly placed foothold (or pushing on it too hard) can cause a truly spectacular fall.

Just ask Iven Erga. He attempted an 8a (5.13b) in Kristiansand, Norway, tick-tacking up the technical stone, when he faced off against a hard sequence. “I was really pushing hard on a small foot hold and I slipped,” he told Climbing in an email. “It resulted in a somersault of Olympic quality and a pretty swollen elbow.”

Olympic quality indeed! The jury is out whether it was a stroke of luck or genius that kept Erga from smacking his head, but we are relieved to hear he’s alright.

Happy Friday, and be safe out there this weekend.

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