Listen to Coach Horst’s analysis of pro climber tactics and strategies, featuring interviews with Emily Harrington, Alex Megos, Alex Honnold, Kevin Jorgeson, Jordan Cannon, Alex Johnson, and more!

This is the third-in-a-series of podcasts on things you can do to climb harder at the boulders and crags this summer…when during this performance season, it’s really the mental, technical, and tactical skills that matter most. Listen, learn, apply, be inspired….and then go send your project!


0:40 – Intro to this episode on climbing tactics

2:00 – Eric remarks about Ryan Devlin’s new podcast, The Struggle Climbing Show.

3:08 – My analysis episode of The Struggle on “Tactics of the Pros”.

3:40 – Backstory on my enduring interest in climbing…and training for climbing!

6:50 – My personal struggles…

10:00 – Generally, some of the most vital tactics of the pros involve strategies to acquire higher efficiency in their climbing.

11:25 – Using “reframing” as a mental tactic to overcome their struggles. Mental toughness is a superpower of these pro climbers.

13:00 – Developing “mental agility” is central to the goal pursuit of top pros.

15:20 – Recreational climbers share many of the same struggles as the pros!

16:26 – Analysis of Emily Harrington’s comments on free climbing El Capitan’s Golden Gate. Efficiency is everything! (Well, almost.)

19:00 – Learn one way to train climbing efficiency at the gym…

21:10 – Pursue efficiency (and recovery!) when climbing outdoors!

23:15 – Analysis of Kevin Jorgenson’s epic struggle—and win!—on the crux pitch of Dawn Wall.

24:40 – Problem solving tactics that we can apply to our climbing…

30:20 – Sometimes it takes a one-off novel tactic to send! (Emily Harrington adapting to the Monster Offwidth!)

32:00 – More gym training tactics for boulderers…

36:00 – The importance of taking breaks from project boulders/routes…to experience more “wins” and to remember the joy of climbing successes! Alex Johnson‘s bouldering.

37:00 – View difficult days—the struggle—as both part of the process…and a “tuition” of sorts paid to become a better climber.

37:50 – Alex Megos projecting process often includes a route-specific training block. Perhaps, so should yours!

40:55 – Eric’s comments on the Alex Honnold interview…and his different approaches to sport climbing and trad (or solo) climbing.

42:35 – When it’s safe…become fully unbridled and climb until you fall…or send!

44:40 – Learning climbing tactics comes with experience–be patient and frequently challenge yourself with diverse climbing experiences, and you will become a master climber!

48:00 – Some of the common traits/strategies of the pros…

48:38 – 1. They have struggles—more than you may think!

49:35 – 2. Mental agility. Make a game out of problem solving and the process of sending.

50:30 – 3. Trust the process. Learn every day, act with intention, and believe in the end game!

51:20 – 4. Route-specific training…especially for long-haul projects.

52:00 – 5. Build a sport team…and remember to pay it back (or pay it forward)!

54:20 – Final comments about Eric’s multi-decade journey to have an impact on climbers around the world! PhysiVantage Nutrition for climbers is the capstone of Eric’s climbing career. Save 15% off full-priced PhysiVantage Nutrition with checkout code PODCAST15. here >>

58:20 – Wrap-up of this T4C podcast.

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Thank you! La Sportiva, Maxim Ropes, DMM Climbing, Friction Labs

Music by Misty Murphy

Follow Eric at: Twitter @Train4Climbing | Training for Climbing YouTube channel | Follow Eric on Facebook! | Instagram at: @Training4Climbing

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