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Two-time bouldering world champ Shauna Coxsey is on the blog! In addition to being the country’s most successful competitive climber, the Sheffield-based athlete is also founder of the successful Women’s Climbing Symposium event. Ahead of this year’s WCS on Saturday, Shauna shares her six favourite training exercises for better grip strength with me.
The 8th annual Women’s Climbing Symposium will take place in London this Saturday 6th October 2018. There are still a few remaining tickets – to book visit: www.womensclimbingsymposium.com.
Do try this at home: Shauna’s favourite grip strength training exercises
Challenging both your upper body strength and hanging grip strength in one hit, it’s no wonder pull-ups are a climber’s best friend. “Pull-ups are a great way to build upper body strength,” says Shauna. “You can always use a band or stand on a chair for assistance if you find them difficult. To make it trickier, you can try off-setting your hangs, using different hold types or doing more [reps].”
#2. Footless Climbing
Want to your build muscular endurance, improve your grip strength and have fun into the bargain? Ditch your feet and play around with footless climbs. Depending on your experience, you might find your forearms and grip fatigue to failure pretty quick at first, but as Shauna puts it: “It’s a fun way to get stronger, have a good laugh and challenge yourself.”
#3. Beastmaker Hangs
If you’ve watched any of Shauna’s training videos, you’ve probably seen her finger-hang from her grip strength go-to, the Beastmaker board. If you’re trying a fingerboard for the first time, ease into it to avoid injury, says Shauna: “You need to make sure you do hangs at the right level for you, but Beastmaker hangs are the perfect way to build grip strength!”
To build a strong, balanced climbing body, don’t forget to include a press element into your training – Shauna recommends press-ups. “It’s always worth working your antagonists. It’s not just pulling that you need for climbing, pressing is important too.”
#5. TRX Rows
Thanks to their versatility, TRX straps are a great addition to your training kit. To improve your climbing, Shauna suggests incorporating TRX rows, which are a ‘pull’ body weight exercise, into your training. “They’re easy to adapt to your [strength] level and a great way to build up some shoulder strength and stability,” she explains.
Ultimately, if you want to improve your climbing, do more of it. “Climbing is the best training for climbing. It’s a great way to get stronger,” says Shauna. “If you want to work more on your upper body strength, try climbing on steeper ground and push yourself out of your comfort zone. But don’t forget that footwork is super-important too!”
Shauna Coxsey is sponsored by Red Bull, Adidas, Entre-Prises and The Climbing Hangar.