Working harder moves at the Climbing Works

Sunday wasn’t as good as Friday. I didn’t feel as excited or keen to climb. In fact, I felt just plain shattered and generally in a bit of a funk. So, I decided to work hard(er) moves instead of doing a circuit. This meant that I could try to improve technique and body positioning rather than volume.

I decided to work on the yellows and wasps as I haven’t tried all of them yet.

I worked on a yellow under one of the skips at the Climbing Works. This was a roof problem where you had to star on one side of the skip, traverse under it, and then go up the other side and across a bit. The moves under the skip were quite hard – they’re not really my style as the are large volume-y holds with not great feet. That said, there were feet, and there were good(ish) holds on the volumes. I had to lean back off one volume, reach out right to the next hold and then let my body swing underneath the hold to cross over with my left to catch the top of the hold. This took me a couple of goes to get the body position and feet right to let me do the swing without feeling like I was going to land like a bug on my back. After I nailed that, I had to then slap up to another volume on the skip, from the hold under the skip in my left hand, and another, quite small and flattish hold on my right. This was quite a big move, and it didn’t have great feet. I tried to use another hold out left as a heel hook, but either my core or my height let me down. I could ‘jump’ to the hold and slap it, but couldn’t get far enough back on the hold to actually catch the slap. After trying quite a few times, I moved on as my shoulder was starting to complain from the repetitive slapping.

Picasa image: Climbing-Works-06-Oct-02.JPG

The Climbing Works Skips. Photo: Climbing Works

I then repeated a couple of the blacks and yellows that I had tried previously before moving on to a wasp. This was a slightly different style of climb. It required stepping into a press and then using a crack above my head to gain a bit of height so that I could then turn my left foot around and bring my right foot up onto a vertical wall. Once my right foot was on, I could supposedly then step over and complete the climb. I won’t bother describing the rest of it because I never got there. It took me a number of goes to get to the point of being able to place my right foot on the vertical wall – well nearly placing it there. I either don’t have the flexibility in my back after a back injury at CrossFit (thanks btw), or I’m still not great at that technique, but I’ve had trouble with similar problems before. I’m going to try it again before they take the circuit down and hopefully I’ll have better luck.

All in all, the session was a good one for trying moves that I find difficult and not getting to disheartened. I wanted to focus on figuring out where my body wasn’t working and moving different parts of me to see if that would help with balance and things. One of the best elements of climbing in a group is the ability to get lots of really good feedback and suggestions from when they’re watching. For instance, I wasn’t twisting my left foot around enough to complete the move on the wasps. My OH noticed this and I corrected and could get much further into the move. Another friend suggested leaning farther back off the crack, and that helped too.

Some Stats:


  • Repeated some yellows and blacks
  • Worked some hard moves, including presses and placing high feet (Wasp)
  • Traversing low roof on volume and slapping up for a volume (Yellow)
  • Moving around arêtes (Wasp)
  • core/tension-y move (black)


  • 3x 30″ planks
  • 2x 10 crunches
  • 8 leg lifts
  • 2×3 leg lift pull up (they’re a killer)