The Most Important Phase – New Post on!

Check out my new post on “The Most Important Phase”  over at

“Throughout my first several years of systematic training, I believed the Strength Phase (in which hangboard training is the primary activity) was the most “important” phase. That is, I thought the quality of the Strength Phase was the key predictor of whether the upcoming season would be successful or not. If the phase was flat, I improved very little, or failed to surpass my personal bests on most grips, the season was doomed. If I maintained laser focus during each hangboard workout, saw steady progress, and ended on a high note, I could expect to crush my projects a few weeks later…”  Continue Reading

Climbing with an Infant – New Post on

Check out my post on “Climbing with an Infant”  over at

“A couple of my friends recently introduced future rock stars into the world, so with them in mind, Mike and I asked our wives Janelle and Kate to help us draft a few tips on climbing with an infant.  This post assumes mother and father are climbing together with baby, and without a dedicated sitter.  Everything written here is twice mother-approved (grandmother, not necessarily :) ).  This post assumes mother and father are climbing together with baby, and without a dedicated sitter. Obviously its optimal to have a third adult to help with baby, but we are realists, not optimists.  In my experience, if you only climb when you have a third adult, you won’t climb very often.  I know there are many other climbing parents reading this, some with far more experience than I have, so if you have any useful tips, please share them!  For those of you who don’t have kids (yet?), perhaps this post will take some of the mystery away and reduce any potential apprehensions to climbing parenthood….”  Continue reading

St George Part II – New Post on

Check out my post on “Sunny St. George Part II: The Present”  over at

“After sending Breakin’ the Law, I faced the kind of dilemma I always dream of: what to do with my remaining two climbing days.  I thought something in the 5.14a-range would be a good goal; something I had a good chance to send in the time remaining, but not a sure thing.  I spent the night scouring the guidebook, and the next day I left early to recon various approaches, cliffs and climbs.  I feel extremely fortunate to be able to climb as much as I do with two kids in tow, but there are constraints.  Not every cliff is safe for kids, and that must be considered when selecting a project.  After scouting the VRG and Gorilla Cliffs, the choice was clear.  The Present was absolutely stunning, had a perfectly flat crag base with no loose rock, and the climbing was short and powerful (perfect for my current state of fitness)…”  Continue Reading…

Deliberate Practice – New Post on

Check out Mike’s article on “Deliberate Practice”  over at

“I’m currently reading The Sports Gene by Sports Illustrated writer David Epstein (Read a brief overview here). It’s a fascinating treatise on what sports science has uncovered so far about the components that contribute to elite athletic performance. The book elaborates on the fundamental “nature vs nurture” question as it applies to athletics; how much of an athlete’s performance is due to his inherited genes and how much to his training and skill development (or practice). It’s a Malcom Gladwell-esque compendium of anecdotes and statistics that explores the topic from numerous angles and a wide variety of sports. [The fact that rock climbing isn’t mentioned is no surprise, and further evidence that climbing, as a subject of sports science, is in its infancy.]”   Read more…