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 Post subject: Fingerboards
PostPosted: Wed Apr 08, 2009 9:51 am 
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Location: Sunny Pretoria!!
Hey all

I'm looking for a nice fingerboard... Any ideas as to which would be a good one to play around with?

Cheers

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 Post subject: Re: Fingerboards
PostPosted: Wed Apr 08, 2009 10:53 am 
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Real Name: Paul P
I'm enjoying my Gecko Hangdog a lot, but don't really have any experience with others.


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 Post subject: Re: Fingerboards
PostPosted: Wed Apr 08, 2009 11:28 am 
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I find that resin fingerboards are painful to train on and also effect your fingerskin for actual climbing days. If you can try get hold of a beastmaker (http://www.beastmaker.co.uk) - its wooden so not nearly as painful!


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 Post subject: Re: Fingerboards
PostPosted: Wed Apr 15, 2009 11:05 am 
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On the subject of fingerboards/hangdogs... here is a link to a training schedule on 8a.nu which I've been using for some time and I think its pretty good i.e. better than just doing pull-ups. Combining this schedule with the core training exercises found in the latest 2 SA Mountain Mag editions gives one a pretty good workout.

btw, I have GeckoGrip's Hangdog but if u can make your own board (wood?) featuring jugs, a medium edge (full DIP) and small edge (half DIP) you'd do ok.

http://www.8a.nu/?IncPage=http://www.8a ... eId%3D4004


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 Post subject: Re: Fingerboards
PostPosted: Wed Apr 15, 2009 11:33 am 
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Location: Sunny Pretoria!!
Man oh man... that looks like a rather intense training plan, but so worth it! Thanks for that one!

As for hangboards... hmmm... the choices really are endless. I've heard good things about Gecko's Hangdob but I'm also likeing the Beastmaker...alot... Will see at month end.

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 Post subject: Re: Fingerboards
PostPosted: Wed Apr 15, 2009 12:00 pm 
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Tali0n, there are a couple of points about the 8a hangboard workout:
- It's not a power workout - it'll help you build power endurance, but you won't build pure finger strength or power from that workout which is, I'll argue, the point of a finger board workout.
- It looks like a recipe for injury, especially the longer workouts. I would wager that RSI-related elbow and shoulder injuries are going to happen if you do this workout a lot. Doing pullups on a hangboard/etc is silly.
- It's too complicated - a good hangboard workout should be simple and involve not much more than deadhangs and rest. Lots of rest. You can't train power if you're not resting properly, be it between reps or between workouts.

I'll also argue that, if you want to train power, a hangboard is complete overkill. All you really need is a 2cm wide edge (and a way of limiting the width so that you can only use 1 - 1.5 cm of that edge) -disclaimer: I do have a beastmaker on order. I've seen decent gains with the following:
- One arm deadhangs (to failure, normally between 2 - 7 seconds, depending on how fresh I am and the size of the rung) on a 1.5 - 2 cm rung. These are quite good at building finger and one-arm pullup strength.
- Repeaters (*a) in front 3 (*b) and back 3 (*c) finger positions on a 1 - 2cm rung. I gave up on these after a while because they were making my joints feel pretty tweaky. They're very stressful on your fingers, so start on a 2cm rung.
- 5 - 8 second deadhangs on a 1cm edge, in front and back 3 finger positions, weighted to the point that 5 - 8 seconds was the maximum amount of time I could deadhhang for. The conventional wisdom is that, for power, you shouldn't deadhang more than 5 - 8 seconds, but that this should be maximal, i.e. you CAN'T hang any longer, ergo the weights.

When these get too easy, remove fingers (not literally) - work down to doing repeaters/deadhangs on front/middle/back 2 (*d), then start on monos. Then remove arms (again not literally). And when you can do a weighted one arm deadhang on a pinky mono on a 1 cm edge, I'll be quietly impressed. At that point, you can probably stop doing power training and start telling Fred to carry your mats around in Rocklands because he's a weakling.

(*a) 7 sec deadhang, 3 sec rest; repeat 7 times.
(*b) Index, middle and ring fingers
(*c) Middle, ring and pinkie fingers
(*d) Ring and pinkie fingers

Rest plenty (2 - 5 mins) between sets. Do 2 - 5 sets of each.

With all the above said, I don't actually have very strong fingers - but I think that these have helped. I've definitely climbed my hardest since I started focusing on this kind of thing.

Oh, and this workout will break you, badly (like at least one persone I know), if you don't warm up or aren't up to it physically. I wouldn't recommend trying it unless you're very sure you can handle it. And even then, I take no responsibility if you hurt yourself.

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 Post subject: Re: Fingerboards
PostPosted: Wed Apr 15, 2009 2:13 pm 
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hey dom... yeah it depends on what one is training for and what other training one does. Also where ones strengths and weaknesses lie.

I have my own HIT/bouldering wall for power workouts... I use the "beginners" workout on that schedule for a warm-up for bouldering. I also use the beginners 5 min. workout as a warm-up for the intermediate workouts. It's definitely helped me. I also have other workouts but I favouring this one at the moment.

I think the important thing tho is to have a workout schedule... something to focus on. Finding motivation to do and stick to a hangdog workout can be difficult at times.


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 Post subject: Re: Fingerboards
PostPosted: Wed Apr 15, 2009 7:54 pm 
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Location: Pretoria
Real Name: Brian Weaver
I used that 8a.nu training program for months, 3 or 4 times a week as either a warmup or close to my exercise session. The 30 min program is awesome when you get that strong. That program helped me go from 7a+ to 8a in a year so I can vouch for it. I never was injured by the program but it is important to warm up properly before commencement. It is really fantastic...

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 Post subject: Re: Fingerboards
PostPosted: Wed Apr 15, 2009 8:22 pm 
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I'm with Dom on this one. Seems obvious to use a finger board primarily for isolating finger strength (nice 'cos quantifiable). And most of those hangs seem a bit long... Although his 'drops' and 'negs' are probably pretty useful for explosive power in the bigger muscles. Still I'd save it for the end of a work out when you can't do anything else... Although if all you've got to train on is a finger board...

And I thought long hangs were known to cause injury? Better to do 'frenchies' -- lock off for a few seconds in three diffrent poistions while doing a pull-up.. Although, for pure finger strength a dead hang is better (4-8 seconds)... I think :)

Oh, about weaknesses, finger strength is everyones' weakness!! Far more important than those big muscle groups!!


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 Post subject: Re: Fingerboards
PostPosted: Wed Apr 15, 2009 11:59 pm 
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like brianweaver, i too have had big improvements in my climbing with this schedule. truthfully, i mixed it up a little, like i'd do 1/2 beginners and 1/2 intermediate or mix in more pull ups and frenchies but for the most part i've been sticking to the set design. I've never closed a training session with a hangdog routine cos I'm always pretty toast after the bouldering wall. but maybe its worth a try!

anyway, what we all need to realize is that there are too many variables to say one propitiatory routine will work for all individuals so we should never feel restricted to any particular schedule... i.e. use some kop and make it work for u. what we should look for is a routine that isolates weaknesses but doesn't overly stress them. i personally don't have a problem with long hangs cos i reckon they have aerobic benefits. If it means anything, I've never had an injury on my hangdog...some tendon strain yes... but nothing serious enough to stop climbing.


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 Post subject: Re: Fingerboards
PostPosted: Thu Jul 23, 2009 8:19 am 
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Beastmaker. Beastmaker. Beastmaker.

You're not going to be psyched for training on a hangboard if it chews through your skin like resin hangboards do.

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 Post subject: Re: Fingerboards
PostPosted: Thu Jul 23, 2009 9:10 am 
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tali0n wrote:
like brianweaver, i too have had big improvements in my climbing with this schedule. truthfully, i mixed it up a little, like i'd do 1/2 beginners and 1/2 intermediate or mix in more pull ups and frenchies but for the most part i've been sticking to the set design. I've never closed a training session with a hangdog routine cos I'm always pretty toast after the bouldering wall. but maybe its worth a try!

anyway, what we all need to realize is that there are too many variables to say one propitiatory routine will work for all individuals so we should never feel restricted to any particular schedule... i.e. use some kop and make it work for u. what we should look for is a routine that isolates weaknesses but doesn't overly stress them. i personally don't have a problem with long hangs cos i reckon they have aerobic benefits. If it means anything, I've never had an injury on my hangdog...some tendon strain yes... but nothing serious enough to stop climbing.


BTW, after spending the last 2 - 3 months doing quite a lot of hangboarding, I thought I'd add a bit more info in terms of what I've found beneficial:
(1) When it comes to power, adding weight is useful. The prevailing view is that you should never add more than 5kgs at a time for two-armed training, and 2.5kgs for one armed training. When it comes to power endurance (especially tending more to the endurance-y side of things), Streaky tells me that adding longer hangs with shorter rest is useful. I've not really been bored enough to find out, to be honest.
(2) Removing fingers can be very tweaky. If you are concerned about doing this, just add weight and use the grip types that you are comfortable using. I found that, after a lot of weighted front and back 3 repeaters on a 2 cm edge, my front 2 power was noticably better. This is probably not rocket science, but it was quite pleasing to see.
(3) Wooden slopers (a la the beastmaker) are far, far harder to hang than edges. Resin slopers (a la most other hangboards) are silly because your skin does the work, as opposed to your fingers.
(4) You need to spend time refining a workout, stick to it and monitor it. After much trial and error I've developed two that work for me and that I can add weight to in a controlled manner. The most important tools for hangboard training are, after the hangboard, a stopwatch and a training log.
(5) There's no substitute for being light. As a heavy oaf, it's immensely frustrating to see the little, light people being able to hang tiny holds that you can't. Lose weight.

Hope that helps. PM me for more details if you need them.

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 Post subject: Re: Fingerboards
PostPosted: Thu Jul 23, 2009 10:20 am 
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Thanks Dom. Man, I can never keep up a training log for longer than a week... If you don't know what repeaters are, see here: http://www.nicros.com/archive/archive18.cfm


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 Post subject: Re: Fingerboards
PostPosted: Thu Jul 23, 2009 10:45 am 
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PaulB wrote:
Thanks Dom. Man, I can never keep up a training log for longer than a week... If you don't know what repeaters are, see here: http://www.nicros.com/archive/archive18.cfm


Yes Paul, but then again, it could be argued that you never needed to. Us normal mortals on the other hand..

In terms of repeaters, the best combinations I've found for bouldering are:
(1) 7 seconds on, 3 seconds off, repeat 7 times (1 set should take a total of 1m 7secs). Use small enough holds/added weight/less fingers so that you couldn't complete an 8th hang on your first set, and can't complete your final hang on your second set.
(2) Encores: repeaters at different lock-off positions.

I've found both of these to be very useful, especially as I can no longer train indoors due to tweaky fingers.

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 Post subject: Re: Fingerboards
PostPosted: Thu Jul 23, 2009 12:09 pm 
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Go check out the new Metolius hangboards that arrived just yesterday at CityROCK.

The 'Rock Rings' look very nice - all of them are kewl...
:P

j


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 Post subject: Re: Fingerboards
PostPosted: Fri Jul 24, 2009 9:03 am 
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DAcaveman wrote:
Go check out the new Metolius hangboards that arrived just yesterday at CityROCK.

The 'Rock Rings' look very nice - all of them are kewl...
:P

j


The idea behind the Rock Rings sounds good, but I'm not sure whether they would be good or bad for your wrists in the long run, seeing as they would allow you to twist quite a lot when doing one-arms.

That said, I had a look at one last night - the holds are just far too big to get any kind of finger strength training value out of them.

If you want something like this for finger strength training, why don't you just make one?

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 Post subject: Re: Fingerboards
PostPosted: Fri Jul 24, 2009 10:46 am 
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Was doing some weighted pull-ups on them at the gym the other day -- off the jugs.. Don't imgaine I'd ever do finger strength training off them 'cept maybe if I was on the road -- nice and portable....

"Yes Paul, but then again, it could be argued that you never needed to. Us normal mortals on the other hand.. "

Whatever, always want to get stronger! And I've been on the same grade or lower for years now.. I think I training log could be really good for me. I realize that I'm unlikely to improve without improving quality and quantity of training. Which is why a log would be useful... I'm just lazy..


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 Post subject: Re: Fingerboards
PostPosted: Fri Jul 24, 2009 12:40 pm 
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PaulB wrote:
Whatever, always want to get stronger! And I've been on the same grade or lower for years now.. I think I training log could be really good for me. I realize that I'm unlikely to improve without improving quality and quantity of training. Which is why a log would be useful... I'm just lazy..


I've found having a training log very useful, especially because I use it to track progress in a number of ways and set future training expectations, especially in terms of adding weight. It becomes far less random when you can track improvement to the point where you know, from past data, that it's time to add more weight/take a break/etc. And it's always more motivating when improvement is consistent and measurable, which is something that's hard to get from climbing indoors.

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