Steep Climbing Strength Question

Posted: 12-16-2012

Hey Timy,

I have been looking for ways to increase my power and one arm strength in climbing. As soon as I attempt climbs on steep walls I find it impossible to pull off the ground. This was apparent during a recent trip to Margalef in Spain where I found the starts of the steepest routes impossible despite climbing the grade on vertical stone. A few people have expressed that ring training might be a solution to my greatest weakness but I am having trouble finding resources on ring training for climbing. I was wondering if you had any insight in using rings to increase climbing performance on steep rock.



Great question. This is something that many people struggle with when traveling to new climbing areas that require a different movement style than their local areas. Ring training can help you become stronger on steep rock which is why many climbers have implemented some ring exercises into their training.

The whole family of mid-ring body row exercises can help you with this issue: 2-arm rows, archer rows, 1-arm rows. Hi-Ring exercises that can help you include: archer pull-ups, wide grip pull-ups + L-seat and The low-ring exercises that will increase your body tension and shoulder strength are archer push-ups, flys and jacknives, crescent push ups. Once you are comfortable with the above exercises you can progress to working muscle-ups and front levers. offers suspension training devices as well as training videos.

The Freestyle Trainer Pro is a new suspension training device that also enables you to perform lower body and abdominal exercises with your feet in the stirrups. This product can be purchased bundled with my training video.

Visit Freestyle Trainer Pro

You would also benefit from the following forms of training to increase your performance on steep routes on rock:

Train on a steeper artificial climbing wall
Fingerboard suspensions
Systems Training: which integrates new techniques and strength

Remember, that any increase in strength needs to be accompanied by a higher level of skills acquisition so that you are able to access the necessary technical transfer which translates into the desired increase in performance on the rock.

Good Luck,