UKBouldering.com

the shizzle => chuffing => Topic started by: Ged on January 10, 2022, 02:43:59 pm

Title: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: Ged on January 10, 2022, 02:43:59 pm
Jonas, am I right in thinking that you're onsight grade has stayed fairly similar for a while, but your redpoint grade has gone up a fair bit? That's just the impression I've got from what you've written on various threads. If so, what did you do? Live near good projects? Or more than that? It sounds like we have fairly similar os grades (7c+,occasional soft 8a},but I've been nowhere close to redpoint ING 8b+. But maybe that is just lack of trying ones that suit my style.

Interested to hear what your magic bullet is.
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: jwi on January 10, 2022, 03:44:31 pm
I had fairly developed endurance for a male climber ten years ago, but I was too weak and had nothing like the required strength endurance to climb 8b except the most endurancy ones (and those are always just one onsight by a prepubescent girl or redpoint from a retired lady away from getting downgraded by a bitter guidebook writer in the next topo anyway).

I think it is fairly common for climbers who onsight close to their RP max to be very good in the aerobic-alactic style (short boulderproblem/shake-out forever, rinse and repeat for thirty-forty metres). I know that I used to be really good at that. Better than I am now. I definitely rely a bit more on motoring through quickly and hoping to have luck with sequences that I used to.

For me the key to improve on RP was to get (slightly) stronger, to spend a lot of time working on strength endurance (which according to received wisdom improves quickly Ė but not for me), and to find soft ones that requires very little boulder strength.

Living close to a gazzillion routes is both a help and a hindrance. It helps that there is a lot to choose from, but a hindrance that it is so easy to loose focus and go somewhere else. Also, forcing people to go the crag I want to go to is not easy if it is wet and other places are dry... But mostly a help.
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: spidermonkey09 on January 10, 2022, 03:53:37 pm
Thats interesting. There are 6 grades between my OS and RP grades, whereas looks like its 3 grades for you two. That makes sense for jwi if hes an endurance beast and lives near loads of endurance routes, but I can't work out whether Ged or I is the outlier for UK climbers!
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: Duma on January 10, 2022, 04:01:12 pm
A whole number grade is a lot, even for UK climbers I reckon.
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: AJM on January 10, 2022, 04:04:38 pm
Thats interesting. There are 6 grades between my OS and RP grades, whereas looks like its 3 grades for you two. That makes sense for jwi if hes an endurance beast and lives near loads of endurance routes, but I can't work out whether Ged or I is the outlier for UK climbers!

I have always tended to think 3-4 is about average. Some of my skillset plays to redpointing (I can remember and execute sequences pretty well), and some plays away from onsighting (not great at committing to the unknown whilst already pumped), so I would tend to self define as a weak onsighter. I have typically hovered at 4-5.
Edit: usually 4, but more likely to progress by drifting to 5 then back to 4 than 3 then back to 4, if that makes sense
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: abarro81 on January 10, 2022, 04:05:41 pm
My view is similar... I would generally consider:
-  3 or 4 to be "normal" (a gap of 3 for flash and 4 for onsight seems pretty common)
- 5 or more means you're either disproportionately poor at onsight or don't do much of it
- 2 or less means you're either disproportionately poor at redpointing or don't do much of it

Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: spidermonkey09 on January 10, 2022, 04:12:07 pm
Makes sense. Interestingly I would say I'm pretty good at onsighting (perhaps wrongly!) so maybe I just haven't tried that many. Certainly I can't think of many harder routes I've consciously tried to onsight, I tend to prefer to dog up them and then do them first go if possible. Sounds like thats something I could address on future Euro trips!
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: Duma on January 10, 2022, 04:41:25 pm
Spidermonkey, am I right in thinking you had a ridiculously skinny pyramid? Is that still true? If so prob accounts for some of the yawning chasm between your os and rp grades
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: spidermonkey09 on January 10, 2022, 05:03:57 pm
Spidermonkey, am I right in thinking you had a ridiculously skinny pyramid? Is that still true? If so prob accounts for some of the yawning chasm between your os and rp grades

It resembled more a mobile phone mast than a pyramid a few years ago but it is now basically aesthetically perfect after a few years filling it in! Thinking about it, I think the chasm basically comes from a 2 year period 2017-19 where I got really into redpointing; before that period started, the gap was only 3 grades.
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: abarro81 on January 10, 2022, 05:21:40 pm
Makes sense. Interestingly I would say I'm pretty good at onsighting (perhaps wrongly!) so maybe I just haven't tried that many. Certainly I can't think of many harder routes I've consciously tried to onsight, I tend to prefer to dog up them and then do them first go if possible. Sounds like thats something I could address on future Euro trips!

IMO, if you''ve RPd 8c and aren't at least semi-consistently onsighting the "classically onsightable" euro 8as, then you probably either aren't very good at it or don't do much of it. Obviously not trying to onsight them will put you firmly in the latter camp by default! Plenty of people prefer that, which is obviously fine - you probably get more done that way than trying to onsight them. Blowing a hard o/s up high on a long route can leave you flamed for the day and unable to RP so it's a high risk strategy. I'm at the opposite end of the spectrum - I'm almost not interested in dogging up routes I'm likely to do second go as I figure if I can do it that fast I should be having a good flash or onsight try (or trying something harder for longer). But that's just because of what I like doing and in some ways it holds me back (I'd have done a shit load more routes at that level with a different approach). Somewhere in the middle would probably work better for both of us!
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: TobyD on January 10, 2022, 05:35:50 pm
My view is similar... I would generally consider:
-  3 or 4 to be "normal" (a gap of 3 for flash and 4 for onsight seems pretty common)
- 5 or more means you're either disproportionately poor at onsight or don't do much of it
- 2 or less means you're either disproportionately poor at redpointing or don't do much of it

My RP has never been more than 2 grades better than my OS, and for a long time it was 1. While I am poor at repointing, I'm also weak, which (if you have good endurance) suits onsighting euro routes, but not repointing in this country, where almost every route is basically a boulder problem, or boils down to a short hard sequence.
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: jwi on January 10, 2022, 05:41:07 pm
I'm almost not interested in dogging up routes I'm likely to do second go as I figure if I can do it that fast I should be having a good flash or onsight try (or trying something harder for longer).
+1. (And I can never be bothered to try things on flash either, because people never give me any reasonable sequences. They seem to assume that I can hold small crimps, or get my fingers into tiny slots or pockets.)
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: Ged on January 10, 2022, 07:13:24 pm
Thats interesting. There are 6 grades between my OS and RP grades, whereas looks like its 3 grades for you two. That makes sense for jwi if hes an endurance beast and lives near loads of endurance routes, but I can't work out whether Ged or I is the outlier for UK climbers!

I've onsighted a few long 8a (coliseum is maybe the only one that some bugger won't downgrade, fun de chichunne, agent naranja, and that long one at tennessee being the others), and quite a lot of proper 7c+. My hardest redpoint is probably postman pat at ansteys (gets 8a+ in some places, but I think probably worth 8b). So the complete anti style.

My discrepancy is almost certainly down to onisghting abroad on a style I'm quite good at, vs only ever redpointing close to home on short stuff. So maybe I would just need to redpoint whilst abroad, which I never really fancy. But would be interested to know what similar folk have done. Sounds like it's obvious, get stronger!
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: remus on January 10, 2022, 08:04:27 pm
Thought I'd apply a bit of #SCIENCE to the proceedings so had a quick look at some of the lattice data. Looks like the average difference between RP and OS grade (to be precise, RP - OS) is 2.6 grades across the sample I looked at. Usual caveats apply, potentially biased sample etc.
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: remus on January 10, 2022, 08:07:40 pm
(And I can never be bothered to try things on flash either, because people never give me any reasonable sequences. They seem to assume that I can hold small crimps, or get my fingers into tiny slots or pockets.)

I think this is quite interesting as I'd say Im proportionately better at flashing than onsighting. For me I'll always take sequence beta with a big pinch of salt, what I find generally more useful is knowledge about the breakdown of a route and what particular holds are like (especially on the hard bits).
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: Wood FT on January 10, 2022, 08:34:35 pm
(And I can never be bothered to try things on flash either, because people never give me any reasonable sequences. They seem to assume that I can hold small crimps, or get my fingers into tiny slots or pockets.)

I think this is quite interesting as I'd say Im proportionately better at flashing than onsighting. For me I'll always take sequence beta

Donít I know it!  :kiss2:
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: remus on January 10, 2022, 08:38:08 pm
(And I can never be bothered to try things on flash either, because people never give me any reasonable sequences. They seem to assume that I can hold small crimps, or get my fingers into tiny slots or pockets.)

I think this is quite interesting as I'd say Im proportionately better at flashing than onsighting. For me I'll always take sequence beta

Donít I know it!  :kiss2:

I'll repay the debt one day, promise!
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: spidermonkey09 on January 11, 2022, 07:56:00 am

IMO, if you''ve RPd 8c and aren't at least semi-consistently onsighting the "classically onsightable" euro 8as, then you probably either aren't very good at it or don't do much of it. Obviously not trying to onsight them will put you firmly in the latter camp by default! Plenty of people prefer that, which is obviously fine - you probably get more done that way than trying to onsight them. Blowing a hard o/s up high on a long route can leave you flamed for the day and unable to RP so it's a high risk strategy. I'm at the opposite end of the spectrum - I'm almost not interested in dogging up routes I'm likely to do second go as I figure if I can do it that fast I should be having a good flash or onsight try (or trying something harder for longer). But that's just because of what I like doing and in some ways it holds me back (I'd have done a shit load more routes at that level with a different approach). Somewhere in the middle would probably work better for both of us!

I think this is all true. Would be keen for a shortlist of 'classically onsightable' euro 8as if you get a moment so I can ensure I at least try a few in the next few years to redress the balance a bit!

I think the risk of flaming myself on a failed onsight go is part of the reason I haven't tended to try them much tbh. I think I also am fundamentally lazy on holidays abroad and go for steady onsights which I know I'll probably do as opposed to pushing the boat out. Interestingly I'm also yet to do anything harder than my best onsight 'in a day' if that makes sense, although I should have done a few times in the UK. Basically I think I need to try a bit harder! That said, I think the time period where I have been at least theoretically capable of harder onsighting has coincided almost perfectly with travel being extremely arduous/ impossible, which doesn't help!
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: Kingy on January 11, 2022, 09:45:53 am
Sounds like you've never really tried to onsight at your limit Jim. Its not for everybody the megapump you can get on a limit onsight but if you're into it, surely this is part of the attraction, barely sketching up some horrendous sequence by the skin of your teeth by a made up sequence with your eyes bulging out of your head? If everything was nice and comfortable and within your limit and you didn't get pumped then the outcome would be a lot more certain but you wouldn't be at your limit I suppose. In some ways, I can see how it would be more attractive just to settle for a quick RP. Far more efficient to bolt to bolt it, rest 30 mins then smoothly send, JStar style. Can't be much of a buzz tho surely!

I remember in the 90's JB Tribout discussing in the mags (in the OTE Moon vs the World article in 95 if memory serves) the ability to onsight 8a (or flash 8a+) correlating with 8c and onsighting 2 full number grades below a person's RP limit has been widely corroborated in many countries as a kind of world standard for a theoretical 'average' climber (holding true for the lower grades too so RP 6c means OS 6a and RP 7c means OS 7a). The calculation is for a climbers with plenty of onsight practice, trying to onsight routes at their limit.

Taking the UK, as has been discussed earlier, the white/grey rock and lack of practice of many UK redpointers at onsighting means that many (myself included) do not fit this scale in this country. Surely we don't need a specialist UK scale to calculate our theoretical onsight, we just need to recognise that we haven't practised it as much as the Euro's and/or don't have the routes available to practice on or simply don't like onsighting and prefer RP'ing (as did Wolfgang Gullich). The option is there if we choose to get more practice in on our Euro travels. BTW, not all UK routes are desparate to onsight, Defcon 3 is just as onsightable as any 8a in Chulila IMHO. All the holds are well chalked and the line quite obvious.
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: Duma on January 11, 2022, 09:52:42 am
and onsighting 2 full number grades below a person's RP limit has been widely corroborated in many countries as a kind of world standard for a theoretical 'average' climber (holding true for the lower grades too so RP 6c means OS 6a and RP 7c means OS 7a).
Not disagreeing, but pretty sure you mean two full letter grades, not number grades.
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: Kingy on January 11, 2022, 09:55:33 am
Not disagreeing, but pretty sure you mean two full letter grades, not number grades.

Oops, well spotted, 2 full letter grades it is.
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: Duma on January 11, 2022, 10:01:47 am
Thought I'd apply a bit of #SCIENCE to the proceedings so had a quick look at some of the lattice data. Looks like the average difference between RP and OS grade (to be precise, RP - OS) is 2.6 grades across the sample I looked at. Usual caveats apply, potentially biased sample etc.

This hasn't been picked up by anyone but seems pretty odd to me - I'd consider 3 to be a good onsight climber, and less than three a bad redpointer, and if I had to guess at averages I'd have gone around 4. Even more so given my (entirely pie in the sky) assumptions about the lattice data set (grade focused climbers probably more into projecting so as to get bigger numbers to stick a green tick next to on insta...)

2.6 seems really low, are people stretching the definition of onsight (so it means flash...)
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: Kingy on January 11, 2022, 10:10:20 am
I remember being below Biographie in 2005 when Yuji Hurijama was first about to try it for the first time. Did he grab the first draws to frig his way up it and get it worked in the most efficient manner? Hell no, he went for the onsight as a matter of principle. He fell off on the starting boulder problem but it was essential for him to have at least tried before pulling on any draws. You never know! I guess he didn't near onsight the Salathe Wall in 1998 by not trying to onsight the odd hard sequence!
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: ali k on January 11, 2022, 10:18:51 am
BTW, not all UK routes are desparate to onsight, Defcon 3 is just as onsightable as any 8a in Chulila IMHO. All the holds are well chalked and the line quite obvious.
This is true, but they are very few and far between.

Maybe we could start a list to help aspirant UK onsighters? Infinitive Gravity and then potentially some of the stuff at Shipwreck Cove are the only ones that immediately spring to mind. Though onsighting good cons might be the crux at both venues.

Oh, and Brean is a reasonable crag for onsighting. With the odd exception (like Defcon) most stuff on Yorks & Peak limestone is nails to onsight.
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: Ged on January 11, 2022, 10:23:24 am

IMO, if you''ve RPd 8c and aren't at least semi-consistently onsighting the "classically onsightable" euro 8as, then you probably either aren't very good at it or don't do much of it. Obviously not trying to onsight them will put you firmly in the latter camp by default! Plenty of people prefer that, which is obviously fine - you probably get more done that way than trying to onsight them. Blowing a hard o/s up high on a long route can leave you flamed for the day and unable to RP so it's a high risk strategy. I'm at the opposite end of the spectrum - I'm almost not interested in dogging up routes I'm likely to do second go as I figure if I can do it that fast I should be having a good flash or onsight try (or trying something harder for longer). But that's just because of what I like doing and in some ways it holds me back (I'd have done a shit load more routes at that level with a different approach). Somewhere in the middle would probably work better for both of us!

I think this is all true. Would be keen for a shortlist of 'classically onsightable' euro 8as if you get a moment so I can ensure I at least try a few in the next few years to redress the balance a bit!

I think the risk of flaming myself on a failed onsight go is part of the reason I haven't tended to try them much tbh. I think I also am fundamentally lazy on holidays abroad and go for steady onsights which I know I'll probably do as opposed to pushing the boat out. Interestingly I'm also yet to do anything harder than my best onsight 'in a day' if that makes sense, although I should have done a few times in the UK. Basically I think I need to try a bit harder! That said, I think the time period where I have been at least theoretically capable of harder onsighting has coincided almost perfectly with travel being extremely arduous/ impossible, which doesn't help!

Depends if you want actual onsightable 8a, or a soft 8a that is clearly 7c+ or less. I think my hardest onsights are routes given 7c+.

To get you started, see my list above (agent naranja, surely only 7c+, fun de chichunne, no idea as its such a weird style, les ailes du desir, maybe 7c+, coliseum, felt the most like 8a).

Interesting your second point about going for steady onsights. I've had loads of trips like that where I was basically terrified of trying something hard, blowing it, being too tired to do anything else, and walking away empty handed. The trips I managed hard os for me, I dedicated them to just getting on 8a routes, and not caring if I blew them. For every one I did, I probably failed on 5. Something that just wouldn't be possible in the UK.


Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: Ged on January 11, 2022, 10:24:27 am
BTW, not all UK routes are desparate to onsight, Defcon 3 is just as onsightable as any 8a in Chulila IMHO. All the holds are well chalked and the line quite obvious.
This is true, but they are very few and far between.

Maybe we could start a list to help aspirant UK onsighters? Infinitive Gravity and then potentially some of the stuff at Shipwreck Cove are the only ones that immediately spring to mind. Though onsighting good cons might be the crux at both venues.

Oh, and Brean is a reasonable crag for onsighting. With the odd exception (like Defcon) most stuff on Yorks & Peak limestone is nails to onsight.

All the routes at potato head, as long as they are chalked.
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: spidermonkey09 on January 11, 2022, 10:45:24 am
Thats the thing, I do really love getting completely boxed when onsighting, its one of the best things about trad climbing I think. So I think its mostly due to just not trying it on bolts much, due to a combination of climbing a lot on Yorkshire/Peak lime where onsighting is nails and wanting to just do loads of climbing when I go on holiday, rather than just try one route, fail and massage my forearms all day!

Ged, I'm happy with 7c+'s too as I haven't onsighted any of them either! Good effort onsighting Coloseum, for me to get fit enough to onsight anything of that grade in Rodellar I think I'd need to do a lot of preparation (or get bigger arms).
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: remus on January 11, 2022, 10:57:56 am
Thought I'd apply a bit of #SCIENCE to the proceedings so had a quick look at some of the lattice data. Looks like the average difference between RP and OS grade (to be precise, RP - OS) is 2.6 grades across the sample I looked at. Usual caveats apply, potentially biased sample etc.

This hasn't been picked up by anyone but seems pretty odd to me - I'd consider 3 to be a good onsight climber, and less than three a bad redpointer, and if I had to guess at averages I'd have gone around 4. Even more so given my (entirely pie in the sky) assumptions about the lattice data set (grade focused climbers probably more into projecting so as to get bigger numbers to stick a green tick next to on insta...)

2.6 seems really low, are people stretching the definition of onsight (so it means flash...)

My intuition agrees with yours, 2.6 feels pretty low. I suspect it's because the 3/4 rule only applies to someone who's put a lot of effort in to both onsighting and redpointing, which suggests that the people in the sample are biased slightly towards onsights (and quick redpoints?) than hard redpoints.
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: Duncan campbell on January 11, 2022, 12:22:25 pm
Onsighting is such a funny thing. I often think of myself as a climber who is better at onsighting, but then sometimes I feel like I'm a much better quick redpointer. For me its quite a fluid thing. My disparity is 3 or 4? (7b+ o/s, 7c flash, 8a+ RP) Though I have also o/s'ed 7b multipitch and supposed 7b on trad (Pretty Girls and Barbarossa).

Much of my initial life as a climber was spent onsighting and I work routes like an onsighter - I climb between rests and am terrible at lowering and re-doing sequences.  :slap:

I'm excited to go abroad and try and push my onsighting as I find the UK in general hard to onsight at and I haven't been abroad since climbing 8a+ or 8a more consistently (incidentally my best trad onsights have been since upping my RPing.)

I always admire how good at onsighting some of my mates are. a few that stand out;

Nathan bloody Lee - hes onsighted some tricky things in the UK; Tequila Mockingbird, the Shining (probably a good UK 8a for onsighting?) plus quite a few other bits.

Ben Silvestre - pretty sure he onsighted 7c/7c+ when his best RP was 8a.


Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: NaoB on January 11, 2022, 03:03:30 pm
And what are we using to measure? The best onsight you've ever done on a one-off low gravity day with a strong up draft on a softly graded route (8a flash or 7c+ os for me), or the more realistic step down to the level where I've done a handful to consolidate (7c+ flash and 7c os for me)?
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: spidermonkey09 on January 11, 2022, 03:15:36 pm
And what are we using to measure? The best onsight you've ever done on a one-off low gravity day with a strong up draft on a softly graded route (8a flash or 7c+ os for me), or the more realistic step down to the level where I've done a handful to consolidate (7c+ flash and 7c os for me)?

I think one has to take the one-off low gravity day, because thats the kind of day I certainly tend to need to get my best RPs done; at least that way its comparing like with like!
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: Fultonius on January 11, 2022, 03:24:18 pm
Will the gap[ not shift too, so long as you're comparing your "single best redpoint"?

That's a very good point. I've O/Sd 3 x F7bs and I suspect that I would be able to do more at that grade, if I had the trips / time / routes to try. I've RPd one (soft) F8a that took a lot of sessions, and 2 x 7c+s that took a few sessions.

I suspect a "one off" siege RP might correspond roughly to your concept of a floaty / light / got the sequence right top end O/S.

Using your "3 rep max" equivalent would probably make things more comparable?


i.e. for me: Max RP: f8a (soft), 3 rep max RP (7c+ [for the sake of argument, as I've only done 2 but suspect a 3rd could come quite quickl])

Max 1 rep O/S f7b* / max 3 rep O/S f7b   (

* I have never tried 7b+ but would have thought possible on a the right route / day etc.

So 1RM differential: 4 grades (potentially 3 if I found the right route/tried loads of 7b+s), 3RM: 3 grades


I kind of suspect you all might be the same (especially if you have decent pyramids)
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: Neil F on January 11, 2022, 04:36:08 pm
For many years my on sight maximum was exactly the same as my redpoint maximum - 7c+.  And in the higher grades (7b and above) I'd on sighted (or at least flashed) as many routes of a particular grade as I'd redpointed.

That probably reflected my general lack of interest in redpointing as much as any great talent for on sighting.  Indeed for a long time when I was climbing my best, that lack of motivation for 'projects' meant I that I wouldn't go on anything (sport-wise) that I didn't think I could do in a day.

Anyway, I then went an ruined it all by dragging my reluctant frame up the Crucifixion, thereby inadvertently establishing a redpoint / on sight grade desparity which I will take to my grave....

Neil
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: Rocksteady on January 11, 2022, 05:10:14 pm
Good topic. I don't get out on rock half as much as I'd like and find onsighting very difficult. But am quite good at getting quick redpoints in my grade range. I will often flail up something on a first try, dogging the hell out of it looking useless then get it next go.

My average best onsight grade would be F6c, and average quick redpoint F7b. So 4 grade difference.
Best flash 7a+, best redpoint 7c. 3 grade difference.

On an average weekend warrior trip I would tend to onsight only in my warm up grades then look for something to redpoint in a few goes. Mainly my onsighting or flashing would be on trips abroad where the routefinding is more obvious and I have a bit of time to get used to the nuances of the rock.
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: Steve Crowe on January 11, 2022, 06:06:13 pm
Jonas, am I right in thinking that you're onsight grade has stayed fairly similar for a while, but your redpoint grade has gone up a fair bit? That's just the impression I've got from what you've written on various threads. If so, what did you do? Live near good projects? Or more than that? It sounds like we have fairly similar os grades (7c+,occasional soft 8a},but I've been nowhere close to redpoint ING 8b+. But maybe that is just lack of trying ones that suit my style.

Interested to hear what your magic bullet is.

I am pretty proud of my 8a.nu log book as it is an almost perfect pyramid, well actually more of a spinning top with 4x 5ís at the bottom and 4 x 8bís at the top and one very long 8b+ on the very top of all that. At my best I could climb some 8a+ís quickly and Iíve climbed 20 altogether. I have onsighted five 8aís (including two 8aís in a day although that was at Chullia), Iíve climbed 62 8aís altogether. Iíve climbed 63 7c+ís, of which 13 were onsight.

I used to believe I could on-sight 7c+ whereas Iíd suspect the 8aís were probably going to get downgraded at some point.

I have onsighted almost half the 7cís (38 out of 95), and more of the 7b+ís (69 out of 120).

At the other extreme, while Iíve rarely failed to onsight 7a or below I have in fact red pointed all the way down to 6b. 

As for the magic bullet, I don't know but I do really enjoy getting pumped and although I'm not strong I can recover quickly on slightly sub max holds.
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: Wood FT on January 11, 2022, 06:16:31 pm
Anyway, I then went an ruined it all by dragging my reluctant frame up the Crucifixion, thereby inadvertently establishing a redpoint / on sight grade desparity which I will take to my grave....

Neil

And we thank you for that
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: abarro81 on January 11, 2022, 06:56:48 pm
With respect to onsightable euro 8as, almost everywhere you're likely to go for a trip has them.. best bet is to look on 8a.nu for that area and look for ones that are popular, people sometimes call soft but don't downgrade much, and that get onsighted a lot..

I'm thinking things like Coliseum (or many other rodellar 8as),
Margalef: Dr Feelgood, Sativa, Aeroplastica L2, transilvania etc.
ATP L3 at Masriudoms
That classic 8a at Sella
Lots in Greece
Hidrophobia up at Montsant
Lourdes at Chorro
Plenty everywhere that's not an old school hardcore venue like Buoux basically! I'd have to trawl my logbook to make a long list.. Obviously I lean towards comments like "all big holds" or "no hard moves" but others may prefer something shorter or more fingery!
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: Liamhutch89 on January 11, 2022, 08:20:11 pm
Hopefully not too off topic, but does anyone have an opinion on whether the flash/repoint grade disparity should be different on boulders?

I'm almost a number grade apart but do feel that I'm pretty abysmal at flashing stuff!
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: Fultonius on January 11, 2022, 08:52:16 pm
Based on nothing but a hunch, I'd expect the gap to be bigger for most boulderers.

Mine is actually closer, 7A best onsight, 7B max  (one 7B+ but it's a traverse) .
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: Bradders on January 11, 2022, 08:57:45 pm
Hopefully not too off topic, but does anyone have an opinion on whether the flash/repoint grade disparity should be different on boulders?

I'm almost a number grade apart but do feel that I'm pretty abysmal at flashing stuff!

I've flashed a handful of 7B+s, versus 8A+ all time best, or more regular multi-session / siege / project max around 8A, so yeah 3 or 4 grades.

Again it probably depends a lot on whether you actually try to do it. For a long time if I was going to try a problem specifically I'd often warm up on it, rather than on other things, which pretty much precludes a flash automatically. I dont think I've ever even tried to flash a 7C in fact. I've more recently started trying again though as I think it's a good skill to practice, especially if like me "trying hard" is a bit of a weakness.
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: MischaHY on January 12, 2022, 08:55:18 am
I've lived hours away from any hard bouldering for years with one exception of an 8B+ lime rising traverse which can be broken down into 8A+ and 8A. I did the 8A bit a couple of years ago for my first and only 8A - otherwise my meagre bouldering has all been board climbing on Moon/Kilter or just indoor stuff (although loads of outdoor route climbing). On both boards I have bizarrely flashed 7C quite a few times but never managed harder than 7C+. I'm not sure if this is due to lack of general effort or whatever - maybe good route reading and poor power?
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: abarro81 on January 12, 2022, 11:12:51 am
I wouldn't read anything into it if it's based on Moon or Kilter board grades, they're all over the place! Plus you have an almost unlimited number of basic, easy to read problems to try to flash (unlike outside) so I'd expect a smaller gap might be normal. My flash and RP grade on the Moonboard are currently the same, though that's also a product of having had quite a few sessions on there trying to do things first try or fast, and not really having projected on that board.

Hopefully not too off topic, but does anyone have an opinion on whether the flash/repoint grade disparity should be different on boulders?
My boulder flash/worked gap is 3-4 (this is true whether based on comparing absolute maxs or "should have a decent flash go if it's my style" against "should have a decent chance of doing it if it's my style"). Given that boulder grades are quite erratic I wouldn't be surprised if the range of "normal" gaps was broader for bouldering though, i.e. you'd get more people with both a small gap (e.g. 1-2) and a large gap (e.g. 5-6)
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: andy moles on January 12, 2022, 11:26:39 am

I always admire how good at onsighting some of my mates are. a few that stand out;

Nathan bloody Lee - hes onsighted some tricky things in the UK; Tequila Mockingbird, the Shining (probably a good UK 8a for onsighting?) plus quite a few other bits.

Ben Silvestre - pretty sure he onsighted 7c/7c+ when his best RP was 8a.

You can add Malcolm S to that, I watched him O/S 7c when I think he'd only recently done a first 8a.

I'm of the average by the sound of it, 3-4 grades. I've not done a lot of redpointing, but I also have a few weaknesses when it comes to maxing out onsight.
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: Duncan campbell on January 12, 2022, 11:40:08 am

I always admire how good at onsighting some of my mates are. a few that stand out;

Nathan bloody Lee - hes onsighted some tricky things in the UK; Tequila Mockingbird, the Shining (probably a good UK 8a for onsighting?) plus quite a few other bits.

Ben Silvestre - pretty sure he onsighted 7c/7c+ when his best RP was 8a.

You can add Malcolm S to that, I watched him O/S 7c when I think he'd only recently done a first 8a.

I'm of the average by the sound of it, 3-4 grades. I've not done a lot of redpointing, but I also have a few weaknesses when it comes to maxing out onsight.

Ooh yeah another master of the onsight. Rob Greenwood would probably also qualify.

Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: Stabbsy on January 12, 2022, 12:00:02 pm
I can remember BITD being out at Millstone - doing one of the Embankments while someone, who I think used to frequent this site, was trying Scritto's Republic on top-rope. They were of the opinion that a number grade (so 6 grades) was the standard difference between OS and RP. I've never been anywhere near that! 2 grades for me - 7c onsight, 8a redpoint. However, I've never spent any great length of time on anything, 3 sessions for anything I've succeeded on, so maybe I'd expect to be at the lower end of things.

Also, as others have said, onsighting fits well with Euro routes (plus some US/RRG ones in my case), whereas I've rarely tried anything "hard" on trips - they've always been about volume so there won't be many routes abroad that have taken more than 3 goes. If you look at UK routes only, I'm at 4 grades (7b onsight, 8a redpoint) which feels a bit more like the norm. I've probably onsighted 7a+ on gear (Golden Mile at Chee Tor maybe?), but I struggle to apply French grades to trad routes as you always get more pumped placing wires.

Hopefully not too off topic, but does anyone have an opinion on whether the flash/repoint grade disparity should be different on boulders?

I'm almost a number grade apart but do feel that I'm pretty abysmal at flashing stuff!
Personal view is that this could be a bit more random than the routes one, largely because bouldering grades are a lot more subjective - too easy to find something that suits you, although I suppose that should apply to both flashed and worked problems so who knows! For me, it's one grade (flashed 7B+, hardest 7C). However, the 2 problems I've found the hardest and have taken the most personal effort have both been 7B.
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: jwi on January 25, 2022, 08:16:37 pm
Warning: Epically long post.

Some empiricial data to ponder

Data scraped in 2017 from a popular provider of online ticklists provides some data on climbers performances. As users get ďpointsĒ for climbing routes of a certain grade, they are incentivised to log routes or boulders at the highest possible grade they can get away with, regardless of what they think. Also, there is no system of signing off the ascents by belayers so not all ascents logged will have taken place. However, noisy data is better than no data.

(https://i.imgur.com/uWagiyf.png)

As we can see, the best performance ever on fully worked routes has a somewhat bell-shaped distribution with median around 7b and with a premium for climbing a route graded 8a. (Much like there are lots of Marathon runners finishing just under 3 hours, but not many in just over 3 hours.)

The median best performance is surprisingly stable over time and shows signs of only slow increase over fifteen years:

Code: [Select]
year                "2003" "2004" "2005" "2006" "2007" "2008" "2009" "2010" "2011" "2012" "2013" "2014" "2015" "2016" "2017"
Median of top grade "7b"   "7b"   "7b"   "7b"   "7b"   "7b"   "7b"   "7b"   "7b"   "7b"   "7b+"  "7b+"  "7b+"  "7b+"  "7b+"

As some users never climb in the redpoint style the premium for climbing 8a is actually understated in the chart above.

If we look at the distribution of only redpoint ascents:

(https://i.imgur.com/7NxBKDZ.png)

we see that the mode is 8a, even though the median is 7b+

Climbers who can get up an 8a with enough work are clearly more likely to put in the required effort than those who can get ut 7c+ with enough work.

This effect is slightly less pronounced if we look at ascents at a stable level. Here are the distributions for highest onsight grade and highest grade achieved ďSecond GoĒ

(https://i.imgur.com/XPgNVqk.png)

There is still clearly a premium for ascending 8a in faster styles as well.

For bouldering

(https://i.imgur.com/UNBbaHY.png)

The median of the best performance in bouldering is not improving any quicker than those of sport climbing
Code: [Select]
year                "2003" "2004" "2005" "2006" "2007" "2008" "2009" "2010" "2011" "2012" "2013" "2014" "2015" "2016"
Median of top grade "7B"   "7B"   "7B"   "7A+"  "7A+"  "7B"   "7B"   "7B"   "7B"   "7B"   "7B"   "7B"   "7B+"  "7B+"
                    [,15]
year                "2017"
Median of top grade "7B+"

To compare highest red-point grade with highest onsight grade we only look at users who have logged a reasonable amount of climbs in both styles.

Say at least both 100 red-point and onsight ascents.

Scatterplot
(https://i.imgur.com/KZcGGFT.png)

Grouped boxplot:
(https://i.imgur.com/SWjeP44.png)

As we can see, the best redpoint and onsight grade are highly correlated ($R^2=$0.8716624). There seems to be about 2 full letter-grades between the hardest redpoint and the hardest onsight for climbers having climbed 8b or harder, as per JiBeís old rule-of-thumb. The median best onsight grade for a climber having redpointed 8c is 8a etc. There are two and a half letter grades between the redpoint and the onsight grade for climbers having climbed from 7c to 8a+ at best. Fully half of the climbers having redpointed 8a have onsighted 7b+. For climbers having redpointed no harder than 7b+ there is just two letter grades difference.

Ideally the difference should be the same across the grades. The discrepancy could be explained by significant grade inflation in the higher grades (that is, the difference between becomes smaller the harder the routes) or that elite climbers are not pursuing onsight ascents outdoors for whatever reason.

In case you are wondering, there is no big difference is we look at the highest grade achieved redpoint vs onsight in a single year.

(https://i.imgur.com/3CxMZYw.png)

Relation between performances in bouldering and sport-climbing


There is a fairly strong relationship between best bouldering grade and best redpoint grade as well. This is of course unsurprising since harder routes generally have harder cruxes. For climbers who have logged at least N=100 boulders and the same amount of redpoint ascents, it seems like the typical bouldering strength required to climb an 8a route is about 7B+ whereas 25% of those who can do 7B have also done 8a. The lowest bouldering strength required for someone doing a fair amount of bouldering to do 8a is 7A.

(https://i.imgur.com/QYchbi6.png)
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: Duma on January 25, 2022, 08:39:13 pm
Good stattage jwi! I would have thought the 8a premium would lead to a bigger gap to os level for those with 8a as max redpoint, but can't notice it in your graphs, is that because it's not there, or just doesn't show in this analysis?
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: jwi on January 25, 2022, 08:58:14 pm
As you can see the dispersion in onsight grade is highest in the group of those who have 8a as highest rp grade. I think that is another way to see the premium awarded 8a. There are users who have logged more than 100 onsights but none harder than 7a, and still managed to scrape up an 8a. That is pretty impressive to me!
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: duncan on January 26, 2022, 09:40:02 am
Great stuff! A subgroup analysis of climbers using the YDS system might reveal a similar peak at 7c+ (5.13a).

The increased gap between onsight and RP grades at big grades must be at least partially due to wanting big grades more: I donít know anyone who has spent 120 days projecting a 7b. A good statistician might be able to determine if the width of grades narrows with big numbers. I am not even a bad statistician but I can think of plenty of social reasons why this might be so.
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: abarro81 on January 26, 2022, 09:44:02 am
The increased gap between onsight and RP grades at big grades must be at least partially due to wanting big grades more: I donít know anyone who has spent 120 days projecting a 7b.

Interesting, my assumption was more that it was based on length of time climbing (i.e. the 7b group would include more newer climbers who haven't yet stopped improving and so felt the need to project, they just think they'll come back next year and bash it out fast)... but actually if they have to have already logged 100 RP and 100 os to get in the data set maybe your interpretation is more likely to be right...
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: AJM on January 26, 2022, 10:31:32 am
The increased gap between onsight and RP grades at big grades must be at least partially due to wanting big grades more: I donít know anyone who has spent 120 days projecting a 7b.

Interesting, my assumption was more that it was based on length of time climbing (i.e. the 7b group would include more newer climbers who haven't yet stopped improving and so felt the need to project, they just think they'll come back next year and bash it out fast)... but actually if they have to have already logged 100 RP and 100 os to get in the data set maybe your interpretation is more likely to be right...

Not 120 days, and perhaps not 7b, but I wouldn't have thought it would be *that* unusual for people to be out of the "bash it out fast" category by the middle or upper 7s. Also, unless you're doing it really fast, do you necessarily have the foresight of your speed of improvement to know you'll be able to stroll it in a year?

Spending half a dozen or 10 sessions on a first 7b+ or 7c or something doesn't feel that crazy, particularly in some situations (a Londoner settling into a winter siege at the Cuttings or Brean perhaps, although I'm certain it's more widely applicable - I'm sure I have friends who've ground their way slowly upwards through Malham medium-duration redpoints in a similar way - perhaps the common feature is an obvious crag choice and a style that leans more towards redpoint, which makes it easy to keep getting back on it).

And then once you're used to spending half a dozen sessions on something, pushing it out to a dozen to get a soft 8a rather than another 7c feels justifiable for the magic grade tick?
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: abarro81 on January 26, 2022, 11:01:45 am
Actually yeah, the more I think about it (and you point it out) the more my original assumption looks like bollocks!
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: Stu Littlefair on January 26, 2022, 11:35:26 am
Loving the geekery here; I see potential hint of a "9a effect" in the comparison of onsight max to redpoint max, similar to the 8a effect. To be confirmed in 5 years when more people have climbed 9a!
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: Stabbsy on January 26, 2022, 11:53:54 am
Great post! The thing that jumped out for me was the median grades of F7b/7B - way higher than I'd have guessed. That said, maybe a bit of bias brought in due to the data source when compared to the full population of climbers? If anyone had asked me to guess, I'd had gone with medians of F6b/6C for the UK - nothing to support that other than gut instinct.

I suppose the next question would be does that affect the conclusions drawn? With a full population (i.e., with lower grades represented more fully), I'd have thought the onsight to redpoint gap might come down on average, although maybe little effect at F7b and above grade range. Any thoughts?
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: jwi on January 26, 2022, 12:07:40 pm
Great post! The thing that jumped out for me was the median grades of F7b/7B - way higher than I'd have guessed. That said, maybe a bit of bias brought in due to the data source when compared to the full population of climbers?

To be abundantly clear: 7b represent the highest grade ever achieved in their lifetime by the typical user of the scorecard service.

As this is a convenience sample I didn't bother to calculate p values, but I imaginee it's a pretty representative sample of climbers who wants to improve/chase grades
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: jwi on January 27, 2022, 06:14:53 pm
To finish off and to try to answer some questions about which grades are worth skipping grades for (7a, 7b and 8a apparently) and if the higher grades get progressively easier to break into (unlikely).

Another way to look at the width of the grade scales would be to ask, how many routes do people usually need to do at lower grades before achieving the next grade. Here again, we restrict ourselves to climbers who have logged at least one hundred routes in the data base.

If we for instance look at climbers who have a personal best of 9a, how many routes of the grade 8c+ did they do before their first 9a? Some did no 8c+ before their first 9a, a quarter of the 9a-climbers in the population did only one 8c+ or less, half did two 8c+ or less, and a quarter did three 8c+ routes or more before their first 9a. The first quartile (1 route) and the median (2 routes) is incredibly stable across the grade ranges.

The price for least ďinspiring lineĒ goes to all the 8a+ routes out there.... 🤣 (I probably should not mention outliers but one climber in the population had done 32 8a's before doing their first 8a+)

(https://i.imgur.com/5JlUvnE.png)



The typical climber in the population did 2 routes half a letter grade lower before they achieved their top grade and 5 routes a letter grade lower.

(https://i.imgur.com/j8tTnNI.png)

I am surprised that these numbers are so small, but I think it goes to show that most people do a lot of their climbing indoors.
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: Fultonius on January 27, 2022, 07:25:16 pm
Interesting, but I'm maybe less surprised about the les broad pyramids below the peak. I'm not along amongst my group (predominately Scotland based) who all have done a limited number of routes under their peak.

When I did my hardest it was, admittedly at the end of a period of just focussing on sport climbing and mainly indoors as I was recovering from a big knee op, so couldn't boulder and was doing less trad.

At the time I did it (soft 8a) I'd done 2 x 7c, 1 x 7c+.  I've now filled the pyramid to a whopping 4 x 7c and 2 x 7c+, so marginally less of a knife edge now.

This year I'm gonna pull the finger out and do a fair bit of sport. I hope...
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: petejh on January 27, 2022, 07:39:03 pm
Two routes @ 1 grade below max and four routes @ 2 grades below max is the definition of an ideal pyramid. Any more routes done at 1 or 2 grades below the max would indicate not achieving your full potential! I despair at these 8a+ onsighters who haven't yet climbed 9a ::)
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: jwi on January 27, 2022, 07:48:20 pm
I guess I am surprised because I always had loads of routes at grade-1 as my max went from 5b and upwards. The only grade I ever skipped was 8a+ (but my first two 8bs are both probable 8a+s so in reality I did not skip 8a+).
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: MischaHY on January 28, 2022, 10:22:16 am
I guess I am surprised because I always had loads of routes at grade-1 as my max went from 5b and upwards. The only grade I ever skipped was 8a+ (but my first two 8bs are both probable 8a+s so in reality I did not skip 8a+).

I think the thing is people don't keep a logbook of indoor routes in the same way as they do outdoor. This is even harder with bouldering because the boulders just have grade ranges and you would have to guess the individual grade. I've been meaning to start doing this with lead at least though because it gives you a real perspective on your long term volume - I know I would have easily 3-4 times as many 8a (and vastly more if we included 7th grade) if I had all the indoor stuff logged, for example - I also currently live in an area with a fairly limited amount of 8a+ that aren't hard horrible sandbagged slabs on slippy lime so this does also limit the volume that gets done outdoors.
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: Bradders on January 28, 2022, 10:29:36 am
At the time I did it (soft 8a) I'd done 2 x 7c, 1 x 7c+. 

My current routes pyramid is exactly this  :lol:

I guess I am surprised because I always had loads of routes at grade-1 as my max went from 5b and upwards. The only grade I ever skipped was 8a+ (but my first two 8bs are both probable 8a+s so in reality I did not skip 8a+).

I think the thing is people don't keep a logbook of indoor routes in the same way as they do outdoor. This is even harder with bouldering because the boulders just have grade ranges and you would have to guess the individual grade. I've been meaning to start doing this with lead at least though because it gives you a real perspective on your long term volume - I know I would have easily 3-4 times as many 8a (and vastly more if we included 7th grade) if I had all the indoor stuff logged, for example - I also currently live in an area with a fairly limited amount of 8a+ that aren't hard horrible sandbagged slabs on slippy lime so this does also limit the volume that gets done outdoors.

Indoor climbing doesn't count.
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: spidermonkey09 on January 28, 2022, 10:33:00 am

Indoor climbing doesn't count.

This, obviously.
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: andy moles on January 28, 2022, 10:33:32 am
I am surprised that these numbers are so small, but I think it goes to show that most people do a lot of their climbing indoors.

Totally anecdotal, but I'm not sure about that conclusion. When I climbed 8a I'd done one 7c+ and one 7c, but I climb very little indoors. I'd be more tempted to conclude that people are more motivated by doing a new number than by going to very nearly as much effort for a number they've already done, at least in the case of those who don't spend much time projecting.
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: Will Hunt on January 28, 2022, 10:43:36 am
Also, if you're capable of climbing 8a on the main Leeds Wall then you're probably booking a trip to Flatanger to onsight Silence. I don't think I've ever done anything harder than 7a on there.
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: Bradders on January 28, 2022, 10:57:39 am
I am surprised that these numbers are so small, but I think it goes to show that most people do a lot of their climbing indoors.

Totally anecdotal, but I'm not sure about that conclusion. When I climbed 8a I'd done one 7c+ and one 7c, but I climb very little indoors. I'd be more tempted to conclude that people are more motivated by doing a new number than by going to very nearly as much effort for a number they've already done, at least in the case of those who don't spend much time projecting.

Yeah definitely. Only indoor climbing I do is training in my shed (99.9% of the time).
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: MischaHY on January 28, 2022, 11:07:04 am

Indoor climbing doesn't count.

Ah so you don't get fatigued or have any training effect from climbing indoors? Must be nice...  :whistle:

Indoor mileage obviously very relevant as part of understanding what effort was put into progressing from one point to another. This can then inform future expectations. Part of this information gathering involves assessing intensity of volume by grade. All valuable information IMO but feel free to 'not count' it  :lol:
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: spidermonkey09 on January 28, 2022, 11:12:29 am
The point is surely that the data you're gathering is essentially junk for the reasons you've identified. Who knows what a grade a problem inside actually is when its in a range, which themselves bear absolutely no resemblence to outdoor climbing? Grading regimes differ hugely from wall to wall, even more so on lead walls where. Even if you think it does count, I'm sceptical how much use the information actually is. It would be useful if you were using it to solely track indoor performance, but its of limited utility crossing over to outdoor climbing. Just like my ability to tech up 7A grit slabs bears absolutely no relevance to my ability to climb inside.

I don't think I personally can discern anything useful from my climbing inside other than 'I'm going ok on the board' or 'I feel like shit on the board.' This *might* mean I can track my performance based on that feeling alone but board grades are such arrant nonsense that attempting to codify them into a usable performance tracker is pointless for me. I don't see why this would be different for plastic boulders or indoor lead routes.
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: remus on January 28, 2022, 12:01:24 pm
The point is surely that the data you're gathering is essentially junk for the reasons you've identified. Who knows what a grade a problem inside actually is when its in a range, which themselves bear absolutely no resemblence to outdoor climbing? Grading regimes differ hugely from wall to wall, even more so on lead walls where. Even if you think it does count, I'm sceptical how much use the information actually is. It would be useful if you were using it to solely track indoor performance, but its of limited utility crossing over to outdoor climbing. Just like my ability to tech up 7A grit slabs bears absolutely no relevance to my ability to climb inside.

I don't think I personally can discern anything useful from my climbing inside other than 'I'm going ok on the board' or 'I feel like shit on the board.' This *might* mean I can track my performance based on that feeling alone but board grades are such arrant nonsense that attempting to codify them into a usable performance tracker is pointless for me. I don't see why this would be different for plastic boulders or indoor lead routes.

I think the underlying point, that people might have weird-looking outdoor pyramids backed by significant indoor volume, remains though. The fact that cataloging that indoor volume is hard is kinda beside the point (unless your point is that it's hard to record indoor climbs in a meaningful way, which I don't think anyone is arguing about).
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: teestub on January 28, 2022, 12:13:38 pm

I don't think I personally can discern anything useful from my climbing inside other than 'I'm going ok on the board' or 'I feel like shit on the board.' This *might* mean I can track my performance based on that feeling alone but board grades are such arrant nonsense that attempting to codify them into a usable performance tracker is pointless for me. I don't see why this would be different for plastic boulders or indoor lead routes.

This is interesting. For me thereís a direct correlation between my indoor and outdoor climbing performance, and often before trips Iíll prioritise indoor over rock as you can get a better quality session in than you can outside, particularly on grit.

I think what grade is attached to something is really here not there, you know whatís hard for you, and you know what you couldnít do a few weeks ago, or on the board a few months ago, and you can therefore track your progress. I think itís also possible to have a decent stab at the actual grades of board things when youíve climbed enough outdoor stuff at similar angles, should you want to record it more quantitatively.
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: MischaHY on January 28, 2022, 12:14:43 pm

I think the underlying point, that people might have weird-looking outdoor pyramids backed by significant indoor volume, remains though. The fact that cataloging that indoor volume is hard is kinda beside the point (unless your point is that it's hard to record indoor climbs in a meaningful way, which I don't think anyone is arguing about).

This was what I was getting at. Apologies for the snarky message previously.
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: spidermonkey09 on January 28, 2022, 12:17:25 pm

I think the underlying point, that people might have weird-looking outdoor pyramids backed by significant indoor volume, remains though. The fact that cataloging that indoor volume is hard is kinda beside the point (unless your point is that it's hard to record indoor climbs in a meaningful way, which I don't think anyone is arguing about).

Yeah, they might, although I don't think its at all uncommon to be a keen outdoor sport climber but not climb at all at indoor lead walls, so I'd be dubious how likely it is. Maybe cause we don't have many really good extensive leads walls in the UK, the trend is toward good bouldering facilities?

I'm more making an open value judgement about whether its worth logging indoor lead routes or loops on a circuit board to be honest!  :worms: :tease: to me be that would pointless, taxonomy for the sake of it. I'm trying to work out why I think that and I think its because it just feels so pointless and fundamentally ephemeral data when the routes are taken down every month or whatever. Theres nothing to refer back to other than 'how it felt personally' and surely the whole point of a lot of training is that its measurable, hence the effectiveness of fingerboarding and different size edges, numbered campus rungs etc etc. Obviously theres variation in these things too but nothing like the variation in indoor grades.

Just my view obvs, nothing personal :) (no snark detected Mischa!)
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: spidermonkey09 on January 28, 2022, 12:21:56 pm


you know whatís hard for you, and you know what you couldnít do a few weeks ago, or on the board a few months ago, and you can therefore track your progress. I think itís also possible to have a decent stab at the actual grades of board things when youíve climbed enough outdoor stuff at similar angles, should you want to record it more quantitatively.

Fair dos! I honestly have zero idea what grade stuff on a board actually is, perhaps because I don't have your experience of steep bouldering. I can get a sense of when I'm going well but there are too many variables to know whether its because I'm actually getting better or not I find; my performance is much more up and down on a board than on other styles. Other things I find make a big difference to me on the board are when and what I've eaten that day, frequency of fingerboarding that week, and how I've slept. I don't record my sleep and diet though; maybe thats my missing puzzle piece?!
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: jwi on January 28, 2022, 12:22:35 pm

I don't think I personally can discern anything useful from my climbing inside other than 'I'm going ok on the board' or 'I feel like shit on the board.' This *might* mean I can track my performance based on that feeling alone but board grades are such arrant nonsense that attempting to codify them into a usable performance tracker is pointless for me. I don't see why this would be different for plastic boulders or indoor lead routes.
I think itís also possible to have a decent stab at the actual grades of board things when youíve climbed enough outdoor stuff at similar angles, should you want to record it more quantitatively.

I always do this. I use grades to decide how difficult training routes or boulders should be (both inside and outside). How else would I be able to know in advance what difficulty I should choose for the individual boulders in a 4x4 for example? Or how difficult a 25 move circuit should be so that it can be completed approximately 5-6 times with 8 min rest between the sets? As the grades indoors often are complete bollocks I just assign my own grades (based on how the same difficulty would feel for me outdoors).
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: Fiend on January 28, 2022, 12:24:41 pm
Warning: Epically long post.

Some empiricial data to ponder

Data scraped in 2017 from a popular provider of online ticklists provides some data on climbers performances. As users get ďpointsĒ for climbing routes of a certain grade, they are incentivised to log routes or boulders at the highest possible grade they can get away with, regardless of what they think. Also, there is no system of signing off the ascents by belayers so not all ascents logged will have taken place. However, noisy data is better than no data.

(https://i.imgur.com/uWagiyf.png)

As we can see, the best performance ever on fully worked routes has a somewhat bell-shaped distribution with median around 7b and with a premium for climbing a route graded 8a. (Much like there are lots of Marathon runners finishing just under 3 hours, but not many in just over 3 hours.)

The median best performance is surprisingly stable over time and shows signs of only slow increase over fifteen years:

Code: [Select]
year                "2003" "2004" "2005" "2006" "2007" "2008" "2009" "2010" "2011" "2012" "2013" "2014" "2015" "2016" "2017"
Median of top grade "7b"   "7b"   "7b"   "7b"   "7b"   "7b"   "7b"   "7b"   "7b"   "7b"   "7b+"  "7b+"  "7b+"  "7b+"  "7b+"

As some users never climb in the redpoint style the premium for climbing 8a is actually understated in the chart above.

If we look at the distribution of only redpoint ascents:

(https://i.imgur.com/7NxBKDZ.png)

we see that the mode is 8a, even though the median is 7b+

Climbers who can get up an 8a with enough work are clearly more likely to put in the required effort than those who can get ut 7c+ with enough work.

This effect is slightly less pronounced if we look at ascents at a stable level. Here are the distributions for highest onsight grade and highest grade achieved ďSecond GoĒ

(https://i.imgur.com/XPgNVqk.png)

There is still clearly a premium for ascending 8a in faster styles as well.

For bouldering

(https://i.imgur.com/UNBbaHY.png)

The median of the best performance in bouldering is not improving any quicker than those of sport climbing
Code: [Select]
year                "2003" "2004" "2005" "2006" "2007" "2008" "2009" "2010" "2011" "2012" "2013" "2014" "2015" "2016"
Median of top grade "7B"   "7B"   "7B"   "7A+"  "7A+"  "7B"   "7B"   "7B"   "7B"   "7B"   "7B"   "7B"   "7B+"  "7B+"
                    [,15]
year                "2017"
Median of top grade "7B+"

To compare highest red-point grade with highest onsight grade we only look at users who have logged a reasonable amount of climbs in both styles.

Say at least both 100 red-point and onsight ascents.

Scatterplot
(https://i.imgur.com/KZcGGFT.png)

Grouped boxplot:
(https://i.imgur.com/SWjeP44.png)

As we can see, the best redpoint and onsight grade are highly correlated ($R^2=$0.8716624). There seems to be about 2 full letter-grades between the hardest redpoint and the hardest onsight for climbers having climbed 8b or harder, as per JiBeís old rule-of-thumb. The median best onsight grade for a climber having redpointed 8c is 8a etc. There are two and a half letter grades between the redpoint and the onsight grade for climbers having climbed from 7c to 8a+ at best. Fully half of the climbers having redpointed 8a have onsighted 7b+. For climbers having redpointed no harder than 7b+ there is just two letter grades difference.

Ideally the difference should be the same across the grades. The discrepancy could be explained by significant grade inflation in the higher grades (that is, the difference between becomes smaller the harder the routes) or that elite climbers are not pursuing onsight ascents outdoors for whatever reason.

In case you are wondering, there is no big difference is we look at the highest grade achieved redpoint vs onsight in a single year.

(https://i.imgur.com/3CxMZYw.png)

Relation between performances in bouldering and sport-climbing


There is a fairly strong relationship between best bouldering grade and best redpoint grade as well. This is of course unsurprising since harder routes generally have harder cruxes. For climbers who have logged at least N=100 boulders and the same amount of redpoint ascents, it seems like the typical bouldering strength required to climb an 8a route is about 7B+ whereas 25% of those who can do 7B have also done 8a. The lowest bouldering strength required for someone doing a fair amount of bouldering to do 8a is 7A.

(https://i.imgur.com/QYchbi6.png)
If any thread needed Johnny Brown's involvement, this one is it  ;D
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: Johnny Brown on January 28, 2022, 01:17:15 pm
Given the subjective nature of the grading scale I need to see a Bayesian analysis before commenting.
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: Bradders on January 28, 2022, 01:39:19 pm
The point is surely that the data you're gathering is essentially junk for the reasons you've identified. Who knows what a grade a problem inside actually is when its in a range, which themselves bear absolutely no resemblence to outdoor climbing? Grading regimes differ hugely from wall to wall, even more so on lead walls where. Even if you think it does count, I'm sceptical how much use the information actually is. It would be useful if you were using it to solely track indoor performance, but its of limited utility crossing over to outdoor climbing. Just like my ability to tech up 7A grit slabs bears absolutely no relevance to my ability to climb inside.

I don't think I personally can discern anything useful from my climbing inside other than 'I'm going ok on the board' or 'I feel like shit on the board.' This *might* mean I can track my performance based on that feeling alone but board grades are such arrant nonsense that attempting to codify them into a usable performance tracker is pointless for me. I don't see why this would be different for plastic boulders or indoor lead routes.

I think the underlying point, that people might have weird-looking outdoor pyramids backed by significant indoor volume, remains though. The fact that cataloging that indoor volume is hard is kinda beside the point (unless your point is that it's hard to record indoor climbs in a meaningful way, which I don't think anyone is arguing about).

I made my original comment that indoors doesn't count thinking about the fact that climbing is a tactical/mental and skill based sport as much as it is a physical one. Indoor climbing bears so little resemblance to rock climbing in 2/3 of those areas that I think including indoor routes would massively obfuscate things. Stu's experience of being burnt off by Barrows in Greece rings true here. As does seeing so many London based gym-honed climbers completely flailing on grades they'd piss on plastic.

That said you can absolutely track indoor training and I have done in the past. I think Steve Bechtel talks about it in his Logical Progression book; there's even a formula you can use to work out your "session density" and "difficulty ratio", with the inputs being problem difficulty and the number of moves! The idea being that you gradually progress your session density and difficulty and avoid big spikes which would be injurious.

Of course, doing all that quickly gets into the weeds and I really don't think it's helpful at all.
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: teestub on January 28, 2022, 01:51:29 pm

Fair dos! I honestly have zero idea what grade stuff on a board actually is, perhaps because I don't have your experience of steep bouldering. I can get a sense of when I'm going well but there are too many variables to know whether its because I'm actually getting better or not I find; my performance is much more up and down on a board than on other styles. Other things I find make a big difference to me on the board are when and what I've eaten that day, frequency of fingerboarding that week, and how I've slept. I don't record my sleep and diet though; maybe thats my missing puzzle piece?!

These factors must also impact your outdoor performance too I would assume? There will always be localised peaks and troughs in training performance, but a training block measured over a few months will show improvements in the areas youíve been training.

On the sleep side, Iíll always remember Stallionís brother Drew telling me that the duration and quality of sleep he had (he did record it) was the best predictor out of anything for his climbing performance.
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: Bonjoy on January 28, 2022, 01:58:57 pm


(https://i.imgur.com/uWagiyf.png)



If only we could go back in a time machine to when grades were devised and make them all alphabetic. It's so ridiculous how slavishly people chase the next big round number. Nothing illustrates this better than a V10 being simultaneously a glorious shining prize in the USA/Australia, and the ultimate unloved runt child in Europe at 7C+.
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: Fultonius on January 28, 2022, 02:21:29 pm


(https://i.imgur.com/uWagiyf.png)



If only we could go back in a time machine to when grades were devised and make them all alphabetic. It's so ridiculous how slavishly people chase the next big round number. Nothing illustrates this better than a V10 being simultaneously a glorious shining prize in the USA/Australia, and the ultimate unloved runt child in Europe at 7C+.

I take it 30 in route grades is quite a milestone in Aus?
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: Bonjoy on January 28, 2022, 02:42:44 pm
Yep. It's also a big thing in Oz being able to climb your age-grade. I spluttered out at 31. Not sure if anyone has made it past 36.
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: Fiend on January 28, 2022, 03:27:03 pm
If only we could go back in a time machine to when grades were devised and make them all alphabetic. It's so ridiculous how slavishly people chase the next big round number. Nothing illustrates this better than a V10 being simultaneously a glorious shining prize in the USA/Australia, and the ultimate unloved runt child in Europe at 7C+.
:2thumbsup: perfect. Or abstract symbols. Would go well with the Grinah Stones guide being written entirely in poetry.
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: abarro81 on January 28, 2022, 03:41:26 pm
On the sleep side, Iíll always remember Stallionís brother Drew telling me that the duration and quality of sleep he had (he did record it) was the best predictor out of anything for his climbing performance.

Not quite the same, but my best gains and performances are - as you'd expect - usually inversely proportional to the volume of work and level of stress at that time and in the preceding few months
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: mrjonathanr on January 28, 2022, 06:12:59 pm
If only we could go back in a time machine to when grades were devised and make them all alphabetic. It's so ridiculous how slavishly people chase the next big round number. Nothing illustrates this better than a V10 being simultaneously a glorious shining prize in the USA/Australia, and the ultimate unloved runt child in Europe at 7C+.
:2thumbsup: perfect. Or abstract symbols. Would go well with the Grinah Stones guide being written entirely in poetry.

You could task Johnny with inventing a system graded entirely in far-fetched metaphors, with anything under E5 / 7A+ being in the appproach section of the crag notes.
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: petejh on January 28, 2022, 06:45:36 pm
Given the subjective nature of the grading scale I need to see a Bayesian analysis before commenting.

I thought you'd probably say something like this.
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: petejh on January 28, 2022, 07:00:45 pm
If only we could go back in a time machine to when grades were devised and make them all alphabetic. It's so ridiculous how slavishly people chase the next big round number. Nothing illustrates this better than a V10 being simultaneously a glorious shining prize in the USA/Australia, and the ultimate unloved runt child in Europe at 7C+.

By happy coincidence there are 25 grades from 5+ to 9c+, leaving one letter spare for 10a., or 'grade Z' as it would be known.

Routes below 5+ would get the Dawes walk-in metaphor.

(edit, fucked that up!)

Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: Fiend on January 29, 2022, 11:02:38 am
Given the subjective nature of the grading scale I need to see a Bayesian analysis before commenting.
Wimp!! Surely those graphs capture the true essence of climbing in a way that Golden Hour soloing on Stanage's quiet buttresses never could....


You could task Johnny with inventing a system graded entirely in far-fetched metaphors, with anything under E5 / 7A+ being in the appproach section of the crag notes.
By happy coincidence there are 25 grades from 5+ to 9c+, leaving one letter spare for 10a., or 'grade Z' as it would be known.
Routes below 5+ would get the Dawes walk-in metaphor.
:agree: :goodidea:


P.S. I know it's all a bit, errr, off-topic now, but I was going to reply with "tales from one letter grade down the food chain"....
Me:

OS: F7a
RP: F7b+/c
So 3-4 grades.

(Very, very rarely scrape up a F7a+, in direct correlation to the one F7c+ I've very rarely scraped up).

I think I'm mentally much more suitable to redpointing (good tactics, good beta analysis / refinement, much better with commitment into known "risk" situations) which means there could be more of a gap, but also physically much less suitable  to redpointing (power-to-weight, and power-to-weight, maybe a bit of endurance-to-weight). Which makes it average out at the official 3-4 grades  :whatever:
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: petejh on January 29, 2022, 11:57:24 am
Me:

OS: Grade H
RP: Grade K / L
So 3-4 grades.

(Very, very rarely scrape up a grade I, in direct correlation to the one grade M I've very rarely scraped up).

FTFY

There are some good vert tecky grade L's and M's on LPT that you'd rinse on RP.

Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: Fiend on January 29, 2022, 12:52:31 pm
 :2thumbsup:

Don't vert and techy řs and Ʒs at LPT involve peeling your skin back on rat crimps that feel like boning down on cheesegrater holes??
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: Fultonius on January 29, 2022, 04:29:40 pm

(Very, very rarely scrape up a F7a+, in direct correlation to the one F7c+ I've very rarely scraped up).


Are you personally doing a "Will Hunt" on my one and only 8 graded route? I hazard to say you don't have enough experience at the level, and a lot of people who have done many 7c+/8as and above are happy enough for the grade to stay "as is". I really should put some time into some other 8a - hoping to try Axiom this spring.
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: andy moles on January 29, 2022, 05:06:41 pm
:2thumbsup:

Don't vert and techy řs and Ʒs at LPT involve peeling your skin back on rat crimps that feel like boning down on cheesegrater holes??

This accords with my experience of all things vert at LPT. Horrible  :yes:
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: petejh on January 29, 2022, 06:21:05 pm
:2thumbsup:

Don't vert and techy řs and Ʒs at LPT involve peeling your skin back on rat crimps that feel like boning down on cheesegrater holes??

Only the good ones.
Title: Re: Topic split - gap between onsight and redpoint performance
Post by: Fiend on January 29, 2022, 06:30:40 pm
Are you personally doing a "Will Hunt" on my one and only 8 graded route?
Wash your fucking mouth out!!

Sorry, it wasn't my intention anyway, just my gut feeling, and it's all irrelevant given that the point is "the proportion of routes a step above my typical max level that I've somehow outwitted is similar for both onsight and redpoint". Also irrelevant because no-one really cares less about these milestone grades, of course  :-\
SimplePortal 2.3.7 © 2008-2022, SimplePortal