A Girl Who Climbs

A blog of bouldering



Climbing Hacks

Like life hacks but specifically for climbing to make things a little easier and cheaper. I posted a short video on Instagram and Twitter of me using hair ties for finger exercises and it got a lovely response, so I thought I’d share some more…

  1. You can buy a pack of soft bristle toothbrushes to brush climbing holds in the gym if the owners are okay with it, this is way cheaper than paying for a single boar hair one.
  1. To stretch your synthetic climbing shoes you can stuff them with some fabric like an old T-shirt or fluffy socks. Make sure the shoes are filled right up and bulging, then heat them up with a hair dryer until the whole shoe feels warm. Quickly take the fabric out, put them on, and let the shoes cool down on your feet. This will help the shoes stretch and mould to your foot shape.
  1. If you can’t get your new climbing shoes on, you can put a plastic bag on your foot to help slide it into the shoe without degloving (or would it be desocking?) your poor heel/foot. Also, if you down-size like crazy in your climbing shoes you can combine tips 2 & 3, and maybe add some moisturiser/Vaseline to the inside of shoe by the pull tabs. Or just buy a size that fits…just saying.
  1. To look after your hands post climb, use any kind of hand cream and add a little blob of an antiseptic cream to it, like Germaline or Savlon. This will moisturise and heal your hands so they’re ready to go next time.
  1. Lastly as I mentioned before, hair ties or elastic bands can be used like little resistance bands to warm up/strengthen your fingers. You can also use a big lump of Blu-Tack or hard putty, and squeeze it in your palm to work your fingers the opposite way.

That’s all I’ve learnt for now but I’m sure I’ll find some more hacks along the way. Feel free to add yours in the comments too!

agirlwhoclimbs 4

Weird Things Climbers Do

I’ve been to a few different indoor gyms now and I’ve noticed habits that seem to be universal in the climbing world. It’s funny because they’re pretty odd quirks when you think about it, but I’m not sure you would notice them after a long time in the community. As a newbie I have noticed, observed and acknowledged these traits, and in the process realised that I have also started to do some of them!

(Not 2 or 3. Just to be clear.)

Weird Things Climbers Do

1. Looking at their hands when they fall off a route/problem, as if their hands magically teleported them to the floor without the climbers consent.

2. Climbing shirtless to try harder, not because it’s too hot. Is it a psychological thing? Maybe the t-shirt is too heavy? Who knows. So far it’s only guys I’ve seen doing this, but it still confuses me when I imagine applying this to an everyday life situation…

3. Getting undressed in the middle of a climbing gym whilst holding a conversation. Like it’s normal to strip in a public place and have a natter about the weather. (Also mainly male climbers, sorry guys!)

4. Constantly chalking hands when talking, looking at route/problem, watching others climb, deciding what to climb. This is a contagious habit!

5. Refusing to hold everyday objects like a normal person. Got to open hand the shopping bag and gaston that sliding door.

6. Comparing holes in finger tips and calluses on palms. Gross, but I guess it’s kind of a rite of passage when you get your first callus.

7. Plotting a route on anything, anywhere.  A clothing fixture in a shop, a large vehicle in a car park, the neighbour’s dog.

8. Groping everyday objects that they think would make a good hold e.g credit cards, vases, light switches. Then also voicing the discovery of it excitedly in public.

Some of these habits and scenarios I have witnessed first hand, as my partner and most of my close friends are climbers. I don’t mind though as I seem to be picking up some of these habits too. (Again not 2 or 3. Ever.)

Climbers are a weird but wonderful bunch, and I’m happy to be part of the community!

Do you have any of these habits? Please say yes.

A Girl Who Climbs

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