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Steve Maisch style 85% efforts on a moonboard (Read 3969 times)

teestub

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Thinking about the outcome of intensity and volume is interesting. My non-expert assumption is that training over a variety of sub-maximal intensities is the way, without knowing how to pin that down more precisely. I doubt thereís  one ideal combination. One thing Iím confident of however; established power sports like Olympic lifting donít just train by attempting a small number of 1RMs each week.

Yeah totally, 5-3-1 training is a popular example of this sort of approach but there are tonnes of others. https://www.t-nation.com/workouts/5-3-1-how-to-build-pure-strength/amp/

mrjonathanr

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Thanks I'll have a look at that.

Wellsy

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I think you're missing the point a little, you wouldn't just do 6c/+s for 6 months. You'd do the 6c/+s for a period of time and eventually the 7as would feel easier, then the 7a+s would also feel easier/possible and you could do 6c+/7a until 7a+ felt easier and so on. But rather than trying 1 or 2 things and bashing your head against it until you do it, you could try that thing, then lower the intensity to an achievable intensity so you can do reps rather than a single rep and then once those reps feel easier to achieve you can retest your 1 rep max, in this case being harder board problems.

Given you said it was 6 months if you just did a session like this once a week that would be 26 sessions, you don't think you'd make gains on a board doing 26 sessions of 10-15 problems 1-3 grades below your max?

Given how strong your max hangs have been in the past I'm not suprised you managed to go from 7A to 7B on a board, regardless of how you approached it! More gains to come I'm sure for you Wellsey!

I do see what you mean, and it is a good point. I suppose the question is whether that's better at trying your max grade every board session to try and push the edge? I might be wrong but certainly when it comes to power my understanding is that you want to be entirely fit and rested but then trying to engage in max power output to attempt to increase it?

I dunno. It was probably more fun just chucking myself around on the hardest things I could find anyway. Definitely seems to have developed my finger strength too; I haven't fingerboarded properly for months but I did single hand straight armed hangs on the BM2000 central 20mm edge for the first time the other day, 3 secs for thr right, 1.5 for the left. Never been close to that before. So it definitely brought me concrete absolute strength gains. Which yes I hope to drive further :D

Anyway I'm curious regarding whether max effort is useful or not when it comes to climbing specific training. Like fingers, or powerful board moves. I certainly did max hangs exactly as the name suggests; I maxed out effort and weight every time.

abarro81

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I think you might be misunderstanding? No one is saying that max efforts, e.g. trying project-level boulders or project-level individual moves, aren't useful, or that you can't get stronger by just doing that. People are just saying that:
- There are good reasons to also do more volumous sessions on hard but slightly sub-max boulders (even if you only boulder, and even more so if you route climb)
- This corresponds much better with how other strength athletes would train
- That they have tried this approach and seen good results, in many cases mush better results than just throwing themselves at maximal moves all the time

As with all training responses to exercises depend on the person. On the whole I've found I make better gains with long problems (e.g. 10-15 moves) or by doing a bunch of 7B+-7C+s than by trying super hard moves for sessions on end. Ditto for repeaters vs max hangs (though my fingers can't take many repeaters nowadays so I do far less of them than I'd like).

MischaHY

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I personally only use the board for max effort on the day and I found that pushed my capability in the area I was working on very effectively.

Itís interesting that people seem keen to think about board climbing differently from weights or fingerboarding for example, where a lot of time is spent sub max, probably in a similar 80% effort level to gain strength.

I guess it's that difficulty of defining what actually is 80% effort in a sport that's so technical. Not that it's any easier to define 100% effort either!

I have to say personally (and I mean no disrespect to anyone) I don't find it it difficult. It looks like this:

65-70% = Flash Multiple without rest

80%= Flash or 2nd Go.

85% = 2-3 attempts.

90%= A half to a full session.

95%= 2-3 sessions

100%= 5+ sessions.

So a simple but effective session construct is to build up a pyramid of flash until you reach max flash grade. Try 2-3 problems 1 grade harder than max flash and then go back down the pyramid. You get volume, intensity, progressive warm-up and plenty of first go attempts to build up the mindset and visualisation.

Apologies if this was all obvious but I thought it's worth contributing  :)

Liamhutch89

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Wellsy - it's also worth acknowledging that you're someone who gets stronger just by looking at the fingerboard! This is evident by the excellent progress you've made in a relatively short timeframe, so it's no surprise that a potentially less effective strategy has worked for you. The rest of us are struggling to grind out a few percent each year; I might never one arm a 20mm edge despite being a full on training nerd!

Wellsy

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I think you might be misunderstanding? No one is saying that max efforts, e.g. trying project-level boulders or project-level individual moves, aren't useful, or that you can't get stronger by just doing that. People are just saying that:
- There are good reasons to also do more volumous sessions on hard but slightly sub-max boulders (even if you only boulder, and even more so if you route climb)
- This corresponds much better with how other strength athletes would train
- That they have tried this approach and seen good results, in many cases mush better results than just throwing themselves at maximal moves all the time

As with all training responses to exercises depend on the person. On the whole I've found I make better gains with long problems (e.g. 10-15 moves) or by doing a bunch of 7B+-7C+s than by trying super hard moves for sessions on end. Ditto for repeaters vs max hangs (though my fingers can't take many repeaters nowadays so I do far less of them than I'd like).

Thanks, that does make sense. I especially like this idea of long boulders having a lot of potential for gains. I never really do those, but it occurs to me maybe I should? There was a yellow in the cave at the Hanger that went up recently which is long and hard but the individual moves I got down all pretty quickly (1-2 goes), maybe I should get on more stuff like that? I'll start trying it a anyway.

@Liam also a good point, some people just adapt to stimulus even if it's inefficient don't they. Still, no reason for me not to try and make my training more efficient!

Moo

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It seems that right now youíre pushing quite hard at things youíre already pretty strong on wellsy. Are you aiming to improve your climbing or just get stronger at those things?

If the former is the aim then youíre spending 80% of your time trying to improve things by very marginal amounts. You could be trying other stuff ( long boulders / dedicated flash sessions / stretching - mobility / power endurance ) 80% of the time and spend 20% on not going backwards with your current gainz bro. 

Wellsy

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Well I want to improve my climbing but in all fairness that's why I've been doing what I was doing, I wasn't very good at being dynamic or powerful, so I got on the board to improve that. It was my proper first "training cycle" of identifying a weakness and trying to overcome it, after all I only started climbing at all in late 2019 so with lockdown and injury last year I've not had a huge amount of time to identify what I'm less good at, but I've definitely been dedicated to trying (although it is definitely hard when you're stronger than you are good, you might know your technique isn't great, but how? Why? Etc).

Now I'm better at being powerful and strong moving off small holds and shit feet so I need to get better at open handed, tension, compression-y moves on volumes etc which is why I'm going to get on the spray wall which seems better for that. I seem to struggle on such things so forcing myself to try them loads will probably help. Also I'm doing plenty of foot drills and such because that can always be better.

My biggest weakness is a lack of boldness, which I generally attempt to deal with by trying to be more comfortable doing dynamic movement high up, using sketchy feet, doing easier boulder problems and top outs etc. It'll come in time. Or it won't, and I'll always struggle with that element of it, we'll see :)

(My other biggest actual weakness is I don't drive. But I'm currently learning, so I can get a car, so I can maximise time on rock, which will also help)

Moo

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That all sounds perfectly reasonable 

honroid

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I've just started using it as Steve Maisch suggests in various podcasts. He has a couple of ideas for using it for strength based around the idea that when lifting weights for strength you work in an 80% - 85% effort zone, doing 5 reps rather than working at 100% effort and at 1 rep. 

He mentions that most V15 climbers will spend the majority of their time cruising around on V12 and V13 problems and working in the 80% - 85% zone.
I can confirm from decades long experience, albeit at 8 grades lower, that this got me (relatively) pretty good at working in the 80%-85% zone and seemed to make absolutely no progress whatsoever in pushing the 100% / 1RM zone (except that when I try, I get injured). Not sure what the science is behind that though.
[/quoton

Maisch mentions this in the podcast. He reckons that outdoors you're going to find that problems from maybe 7A+ and up are going to have hard moves that train strength. Certainly 8As and 8Bs are going to allow someone to get a good work out. Your 8C climber is going to be training stength while they're cruising around on 8A+s but a 7A climber is not going to be getting the same stimulus on a load of 6Cs. Obviously this would depend on the area and rock type massively.

jwi

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Maisch mentions this in the podcast. He reckons that outdoors you're going to find that problems from maybe 7A+ and up are going to have hard moves that train strength. Certainly 8As and 8Bs are going to allow someone to get a good work out. Your 8C climber is going to be training stength while they're cruising around on 8A+s but a 7A climber is not going to be getting the same stimulus on a load of 6Cs. Obviously this would depend on the area and rock type massively.

That sounds absolutely bananas. The muscle-tendon unit cannot know what grade the boulders have.

There are not that many gyms that set 10-15 high-quality 8C boulders per month (B-pump maybe? by the sound of it), and there are not many areas where there are a dozens upon dozens of 8C-9A boulders to choose from, so of course 8C climbers are going to spend more time than they should on what for them is easy shit.

teestub

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I totally agree that bit makes no sense at all, a couple of grades below your max is a couple of grades below your max whether thatís 9A or 7A!

webbo

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 I remember reading about Lisa Rands who bouldered V12 would do a V6/V7 day where she do 30 to 40  of this grade which she felt helped her high end stuff.

Liamhutch89

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Drew Ruana said something similar on his recent Careless Talk podcast appearance. Asked about his lack of training and just going climbing instead, he said that (paraphrase) climbing V14 boulders every time he goes out is enough training on its own, but at a lower level, climbers wouldn't get the same effect and supplemental training might be more beneficial.

Like the posters above, I'm skeptical, unless it's something specific to the bouldering in Colorado, e.g. at V14 the climbing is sufficiently steep and sustained on single pad edges in a way that it isn't at V8?

Bradders

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Drew Ruana said something similar on his recent Careless Talk podcast appearance. Asked about his lack of training and just going climbing instead, he said that (paraphrase) climbing V14 boulders every time he goes out is enough training on its own, but at a lower level, climbers wouldn't get the same effect and supplemental training might be more beneficial.

Like the posters above, I'm skeptical, unless it's something specific to the bouldering in Colorado, e.g. at V14 the climbing is sufficiently steep and sustained on single pad edges in a way that it isn't at V8?

Specifically on Drew, he said on the Nugget that he also does loads of weight training, or at least did for a really long time, has a gym in his basement and goes to the gym a lot with his partner. So I take his "I don't train" thing with a massive pinch of salt.

Anyway, I meant to say ages ago that whilst Steve Maisch did say about e.g. 8C climbers doing lots of 8A-Bs, he also said that after warming up on an 8A or two, they would go and try their 8C project.... i.e. they're getting both levels of stimuli. Take Drew as a case in point; yes he does loads of V12s/13s/14s but he's also spent an enormous amount of time on things like Megatron.

yetix

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Jack Pal has done 100s of 8s over the last few years since not training anymore, but instead spends some sessions at training venues, I'd hazard a guess that flipnic into the crack is the physically the hardest thing he's done from my armchair and was done in the middle of the last 3 years of doing over 200 8s (if flipnic is 8b+ like most seem to suggest and it adds 8a onto the end of that) and that was off the back of basically just going outside alot.

The Bowderstone ladder face is like a giant board of generally nice edges with some tricks and fairly powerful movement (the backside involves wizardy too!)

Parisella's is like doing repeaters in a roof if you climb through rocka and triggercut. With ferrino is like doing a chest and lats and legs session at the gym.

Every training venue has things it will make you particularly good at  the same way every board does too, and given most people use boards it makes sense.

Perhaps we need a ranking of the UKs best training venues!

I guess the thing with harder boulders is they often contain l more sustained areas (especially when they're adding harder starts into established problems?) whereas often in my experience lower grade stuff revolves around a move or two, and the other areas you can be more relaxed or out of the zone so to speak (I'm sure there's many examples which buck the trend, but finding them for every session with also small enough holds to make finger gains and complexities to become a better climbing is probably harder to find in lower grades?) and then this gradually increases.


I also guess as the grade increases (at least in my experience) as does the complexity of what's required and the more you can learn the better, if you're having to learn loads from the boulder, but also getting decent training stimulous then surely that's win win? Perhaps you could get more physical stimulous on a board etc but might lose an aspect of the learning component which is equally important...
« Last Edit: February 12, 2023, 12:44:10 pm by yetix »

jwills

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I've climbed on the moonboard quite a bit as I have one in my garage and find it is especially brutal at exploiting one's "technique" and strength. While skill and strength are necessary in really any form of climbing I think moonboarding (assuming this is an established verb now) really requires a requisite amount of strength as well as an ability to move effectively around the board. The strength could probably come from anywhere but the movement aspect of things is pretty moonboard-specific. Having thrown myself hopelessly at certain problems I often find my inability to send is many times not strength related and way more movement related. With that said there is definite benefit (when talking about moonboarding) to really nail down the movements of lower grades before moving onto harder grades. So when Maisch talks about 85% effort moonboarding I think it's for 2 reasons. One is for sure to get volume which is occasionally an under-appreciated means of strength training (bechtel talks a lot about this) but also to just become comfortable with the moonboard movement patterns which really can't be learned if trying at your absolute limit.
There are definite movement patterns on the board that are necessary to nail down that aren't super common at commercial gyms. This is for sure the case with the 2019 set which in general requires a ton more body tension/positioning compared to the 2016 set (may be a hot take right there).

One could posit that for things that are more multi-faceted like moonboarding, coordination-type boulders (for whoever does those), slab, etc incorporating some "85% effort" training in there is very valuable. 85% effort training though for simpler and more power-dependent training (fingerboarding, campusing, etc) could be less valuable unless volume is messed with sort of like anderson hangs.


honroid

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I'm a few sessions deep into this idea of doing 5 problems at 3 grades below, 5 at 2 grades below and repeating the first 5.

Just finished a sessions tonight. Using the Moonboard has let me really dial in the level over the last few weeks. Failing on maybe one problem on the main set or last set.

Using the Moonboard means I'm cranking on good quality problems and trying new moves rather than cycling through old problems. Although I have that option too if I'm feeling weaker on a day.

I'm surprised by the variety of movement and styles. I'm quite often looking at moves thinking 'no way' and then doing the problem a few goes later.

The while thing feels very worthwhile. For sure getting better at moonboarding. Not sure of it will do anything for my climbing!


 

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