To be a good rock climber you need willpower, endurance, and strength. While a rock climbing gym can help you develop all these qualities, it is not uncommon for rock climbers to find themselves in situations where going to the gym is impossible. Maybe you are busy, you are exhausted, or the conditions don’t allow you to leave the house.
In these circumstances, you need to take advantage of climbing training at home. To help you prepare physically and mentally for the crags, we have created a 7-day climbing training program. This should make it easier for you to do rock climbing exercises at home.
7-Day Program for Climbing Training at Home
Day 1: Use Your Door Frame
Ensure that your frame is solid and also consider warming up your fingers with short hangs before you move on to the full set. Door frames are generally narrow and should be used by advanced or intermediate rock climbers. If you just started wearing your rock climbing shoes and climbing pants – meaning you are a beginner – large ledges and tree branches should be ideal alternatives.
Just like when using a climbing hangboard to workout, maintain an open-crimp position without the thumb wrap. Hang for 5 seconds, and then rest for 5 seconds for the full minute.
These are supposed to be as controlled as possible. You should do the exercise after warming up the fingers. If needed, you can change from open-crimp to the closed crimp position.
Hanging Leg Raises
One of the advanced rock climbing exercises at home, it allows you to work your abdominals and build finger strength. Hang on the door frame and bring the legs as high as you can; bend the knees to minimize difficulty. If you want a greater challenge, keep the legs straight. When lowering, keep your core tight to prevent swinging.
Day 2: Use Open Space
For your second day of climbing training at home, you will need an open space without any props. Locate an open space and mark a distance of approximately 100 feet with ten-foot increments. Wear your trail running shoes and then sprint from the baseline to the farthest end and back.
Reduce the distance by ten feet on every turnaround until you are finished. Try touching the ground at every turnaround.
Hold a high plank – or an elevated pushup position – using your fingers to try and hold as high as you possibly can. This should help you develop core and finger strength.
Raised-Leg Diamond Pushups
These will hit your back, chest, triceps, shoulders, and the core. Get into the pushup position with your hands making the diamond shape directly under the chest and raise 1 leg as high as you can before it bends. Perform thirty seconds of pushups and then switch the legs.
Lower down into the basic lunge, with the knee straight above the toes, not extending past them. Instead of pushing back up slowly, jump and quickly switch the legs to the alternate position while you are in the air. Land softly and smoothly lowering down into your next lunge.
Looking for rock climbing exercises at home that can strengthen the entire core fast? This is it.
Lie down in a pushup position with your hands close together and extended 10 inches out from the head. To perform a pushup, you will have to engage the core fully and bend the elbows outward.
Day 3: Use Your Table
Lie down under one of your solid tables. Grab the outside edge with heels on the ground and your body straight. Pull your chest to the table. The higher the feet are – that is, closer to being level with the hands – the harder the pull-ups become.
This is a single-leg squat where the climber raises 1 leg out in front and lowers down as far as possible on the other leg before they stand up again. This amazing climbing workout allows you to get full motion range in each leg and build deep strength with flexibility.
If you are new to pistol squats, you can use a slightly tall table to help with getting up and down. Slightly pull at the table as you come out out of the squat.
Day 4: Use the Chairs
With 2 chairs featuring similar height, put both feet on one and the upper body with straight arms on the other. Dip the upper body down, keeping the back vertical, your head up and the legs straight. This exercise emphasizes the chest, triceps, shoulders, and abdominals – these are the muscles you need for climbing.
This spin on the normal pushup will work your back, abdominals, shoulders, and upper chest, making climbing easier for you once you put on your climbing shorts and climbing helmet. Place your toes on the chair and keep the back straight and perform a pushup.
This exercise helps emphasize on forearm strength and grip, as well as the core stability – these are crucial in both trad climbing and sport climbing.
Start by lying on your stomach while extending the arms straight out in front. Grab the front chair legs and then curl your chair upward until it is approximately 5 inches off the ground. The elbows should be touching the ground – they should act as a pivot point for raising your chair. Squeeze the lats to keep the shoulders tight.
If the chair is light, hold it in the air for 1 minute. Alternatively, choose a heavier chair and do 3 rounds of 15 seconds.
Day 5: Use the Walls
Locate a narrow hallway that you won’t mind potentially marking with rubber. Use the upper body to get into the full stemming position between the walls.
Stay upright and practice engaging 1 leg more to give your other leg a small rest. Experiment with your heels down, out, up, etc.
Upside Down Shoulder Press
While against the wall, get into the handstand position. Guide your back, legs, and glutes until you are in line with the wall vertically. Lower your body down just before the head touches the ground and then push up until your body is in a full handstand. Emphasize your top position with a shrug.
This exercise is great for strengthening shoulders that get injured easily. However, be sure to warm up the shoulders with stretching exercises and arm circles.
Day 6: Use the Stairs
These are similar to the box jumps, except that you will jump more forward. Locate a distance and height that is optimal for you and then jump forward to the desired step, landing in a squat. Jump back down and then repeat the exercise. Stair jumps are one of the best rock climbing exercises at home for cardio and high reps.
Weighted Stair Walks
For this exercise, you will need to find something relatively heavy that you can carry comfortably – for example, full water jugs, a weighted pack, or a loaded laundry basket. Walk up and down a stair flight while carrying the object.
This should improve explosiveness and coordination. Sprint up the stairs, and every round, consider using a different pattern – for example, one foot on every step, skipping 1 step, skipping 2 steps, etc.
You can use your arms to help you keep the momentum. Focus on an interval aspect by sprinting as hard as you can on the way up and then jogging down for a mini-rest.
Day 7: Makeshift Weights
Weightlifting is one of the best ways to develop the strength you need when using your climbing rope and climbing harness on a climbing route. When focusing on climbing training at home, you can do various standard weightlifting exercises by making use of milk jugs or full gallon-size water, which weigh approximately 8 pounds each.
You can consider trying the following:
- Farmer carry
- Forearm curls
- Bench press
- Weighted squats
- Russian twists
- Standing flys
- Shoulder press
Q: How Do You Train to Climb Without Climbing?
To train for climbing without climbing, you will need to take advantage of your body weight to improve your overall strength, cardio, and conditioning. This article has the various exercises you need to achieve this.
Q: How Do Beginners Train for Rock Climbing?
To train for rock climbing as a beginner, you will need to start with base-level programs, incorporating good old push-ups, sit-ups, and pull-ups. Once you achieve a decent overall fitness, you can move on to a more climbing-specific regiment. Our article on how to get into rock climbing has everything a beginning rock climber would want to know.
Globo Surf Overview
There are numerous ways to get better at climbing that does not require high-end training gear. In this article, we have discussed most of these exercises. If you use the above exercises when climbing training at home, you should be able to improve your overall fitness, cardio, strength, and conditioning.