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Funky Technique - Cross Hooking
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By Joshua1979
From Colorado Springs, CO
Dec 13, 2011

Came across this technique on the interwebs and thought I'd post it up here. I haven't tried this yet but in my minds eye it seems like it could work quite well in certain situations. This may be old news but i've never seen it before. Check it and lemme know what you think.

If any of you have techniques stored away in the memory banks that may not be so common but have helped you send please post them.

www.justclimb.com/Tips-Crosshooking-The-Holds.html

Quoted from site:
"There are times on a overhanging climb, or just after pulling the lip of a roof, that I find I have a good hold, but can't reach the next hold. Sometimes this calls for making a heel-hook, to take the weight off of your arms, so you have the strength to reach higher/further. Well, sometimes that isn't enough, besides, it drops the loose shoulder further from the hold, as often as not. Here's 2 forms of one solution that I use to solve this probelm. Both make the effort skelital rather than muscular, and actually make gravity work for you. Niether requires much strength or efffort, once you get the hang of it.

I'll describe a particular configuration... hooking to the left. Simply switch 'left' for 'right' and vice-versa to get iunstructions for an opposite situation.

Imagine you just got that fabulous left-hand jug, and the next available hand-hold is WAYYYY up there, out of reach. Off to the left appears to be a great heel-hook. You try hooking it, and it takes some of the weight off of your arms, allowing you to reach 6 inches higher. Well, the next hold is still a foot out of reach. How do you get to it?

Part of the problem is that your right shoulder hangs below your left shoulder when your left foot is hooked up. Getting it above the left is no simple or easy matter. It involves alot of power and tremendous flexibility. Now, just to do that, you can still only reach a few inches above the left with the right... All in all, this sucks. I have an alternate solution. This will be hard to describe, so bear with me.

Struggling with the same problem in Red River (where the technique I am about to describe works quite often) on a particular climb, I threw the second leg (the right one) up on the hook instead. BINGO! What you do is get the left foot up into a heel-hook, then switch it for the right. You body is now in what SOUNDS like an awkward podition, but is actually not. The right leg is now on your left side, heel-hooking, while the left leg dangles out from the cliff. Your left arm comes across your body to the hold you've been on. Your right shoulder is pointed in towards the cliff. Now, straiten the left leg (the one that was dangling) at the hip and at the knee. Spread your left leg out from the hip, as if you were trying to stretch your groin. This puts your left leg pointing horizontally out from the cliff. Gravity will take over and pull down on this leg, and the result will be ( if you keep your torso strait and don't go floppy) to "roll" your body so that your left side is below your right side. This is EXACTLY what you wanted. You see, now your right shoulder is above the left shoulder, almost touching the left hand-hold you were hanging from.

(I'll try to draw a mental picture of the body position here...) Your left arm is on a hold. On the left side, your RIGHT heel is hooked on a hold. You left leg is dangleing down, straitened at the waist and knee. You body is "crossed over", with your back neerly facing the wall, and your left arm hanging from the hold is lieing flat across your chest. Your right shoulder is ABOVE your left.)

(back to the move...)

Now that your right shoulder is above the left by the full width of you shoulders (probably 18 inches or more), your right arm just reaches up (18 inches higher than before) and grasps whatever hold was once out of reach. You have accomplished your first "CROSS-HOOK". Get your body uncrossed and finnish the route. I have made reaches of of over 3' (neerly 4') statically on overhangs this way, and above rooves. I'm not exactly what you'd call extremely strong, and DEFINATELY NOT TALL or light. (I out- weigh the average climber in Red River by about 10-20 lbs.)

Once you have tried that, there are a few varriations to consider, which are better in some situations. The first of these is that you may find a smear or a hold with the left foot while it is dangling. Push down and left on the hold (push your body up and right). This will extend your reach a few more inches.

Another varriation of this is to leave the left heel hooked, but then bring the right up and over it, crossing above it and straightening it, forcing gravity to twist the body almost 180 degrees. I find this to be more stressfull on the joints, but it saves you trying to switch feet on the hooked hold, if it's a small hold.

One more tip... if you use the hold WISELY, and it's big enough, you'll be able to convert the hook into a standing hold without moving it, by rolling the heel into a standing position, as you pull your body up on the right hold you've just gained. This will save the effort expended by screwing off with your feet dangling when you're trying to reset them. Try all of this out and get the hang of it befor you use it on lead!

WARNING: IF YOU USE THIS ON LEAD BE CAREFULL TO KEEP THE ROPE BETWEEN YOU AND THE ROCK, AND NEVER, NEVER, EVER "OUTSIDE" OF YOUR HIPS. IF YOU FALL WITH THE ROPES OUTSIDE OF YOUR HIPS, THE DOCTOR (OR FUNERAL) BIILS WILL BE EMMENSE! The rope will set you into a terrible spin if it comes tight on the wrong side of your body."

Credit for the above snippet goes to Anthony R Bubb's


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By Brent Apgar
From Out of the Loop
Dec 13, 2011
Me and Spearhead

I'm not trying to be an ass... there's certainly a lot of funky, stupid human tricks available to complete a move here or there.
Honestly if you want to gather together a catalog of super specialized moves for that one particular time you need it... go bouldering inside.

You'll be forced into all sorts of joint dislocating funkyness... or you'll just get so damned strong that you won't need any sort of trick technique.


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By Joshua1979
From Colorado Springs, CO
Dec 13, 2011

Brent Apgar wrote:
I'm not trying to be an ass... there's certainly a lot of funky, stupid human tricks available to complete a move here or there. Honestly if you want to gather together a catalog of super specialized moves for that one particular time you need it... go bouldering inside. You'll be forced into all sorts of joint dislocating funkyness... or you'll just get so damned strong that you won't need any sort of trick technique.


I'm not looking for ear jams or the like, but useful techniques that may not be so widely known (i.e. Leavittation)... or not, whatever. I don't think the above technique is a stupid human trick however. It looks like it could have actual utility in some situations. It uses the weight of the outside leg to provide leverage, allowing additional reach without additional power output (in theory anyway - I will be trying it out tomorrow to see what I think). I dunno maybe there are not enough 'unusual' techniques out there to warrant a discussion.


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By Jake Jones
From Richmond, VA
Dec 13, 2011
Me and the offspring walking back to the car after a day of cragging.

A picture would help. In my mind's eye, I picture the effort to twist and contort as putting a hell of a strain on that left hand jug.


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By michael rowell
Dec 13, 2011
sail away, joshua tree

on fistful of walnuts(??) in j tree i heard some guy using a head jam technique to send the problem


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By Brendan Blanchard
From Strafford, NH
Dec 13, 2011
Obi Wan Ryobi - Darth Vader Crag, Rumney NH

Agreed with above. I wouldn't call these types of things technique so much as specific beta for a problem. If you get stuck on a specific route/problem, you're better off asking a local about the beta for that move rather than memorizing a list of obscure moves from people trolling around online.


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By RyanJohnson
From Tucson, Arizona
Dec 13, 2011

Brendan Blanchard wrote:
Agreed with above. I wouldn't call these types of things technique so much as specific beta for a problem. If you get stuck on a specific route/problem, you're better off asking a local about the beta for that move rather than memorizing a list of obscure moves from people trolling around online.


The move described is just a variation of a common technique generally known as a twist-lock. Look at this page from the classic Performance Rock Climbing by Goddard and Neumann for the basic example.

It's a useful move. It extends the shoulder of the reaching arm and the downward force of the hanging leg helps to roll the body over making the reach easier.

In this situation, one is using a heel-hook with the outside of the foot against the wall just as one would use the outside edge of the rock boot in a more generic situation.

The photo description on the previously linked page from PRC explains the general idea:
wrote:
Twisting lengthens reach and requires less strength. Note how using the left foot's outside edge allows the whole body to roll to the side.


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By Monomaniac
Administrator
From Morrison, CO
Dec 13, 2011
Pulling a small roof at 2/3 height on Mission Impossible.  Adam Sanders photo.

Jimminy christmas this is just a freaking backstep. Has the whole world gone crazy?! So he's using his heal instead of his forefoot, BFD.


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By Joshua1979
From Colorado Springs, CO
Dec 14, 2011

RyanJ wrote:
The move described is just a variation of a common technique generally known as a twist-lock. Look at this page from the classic Performance Rock Climbing by Goddard and Neumann for the basic example. It's a useful move. It extends the shoulder of the reaching arm and the downward force of the hanging leg helps to roll the body over making the reach easier. In this situation, one is using a heel-hook with the outside of the foot against the wall just as one would use the outside edge of the rock boot in a more generic situation. The photo description on the previously linked page from PRC explains the general idea:


I didn't quote the entire article but if you click through he does state it is a variation of the twist lock. I just never thought to switch the heel hook to the other foot when clearing a roof like that.

Like I said, may be old news to some...

Monomaniac wrote:
Jimminy christmas this is just a freaking backstep. Has the whole world gone crazy?! So he's using his heal instead of his forefoot, BFD.

...and apparently make others very angry.


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By Brent Apgar
From Out of the Loop
Dec 14, 2011
Me and Spearhead

Joshua1979 wrote:
...and apparently make others very angry.

It's just that biomechanics dictates that there are only so many ways that the human body can move and so there are really only a few different general climbing techniques.
I can see Mono's point, it get's a little old when people want to reinvent the wheel every few months... it's sort of like some of the training discussions. (Had to throw that in, figured that Mono would get a smirk out of it given you end up in on a lot of those posts.)

That's also why I said that I wasn't trying to be a smartass. If you have a decent bouldering area in the local gym you can log a lot of time doing awkward moves and you'll figure out when you need to maybe start a move w/ a heel and then switch it to a toe or when cross body foot positions give you better leverage....etc.

cheers all... and have a happy holiday season.
BA


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By Joshua1979
From Colorado Springs, CO
Dec 15, 2011

Brent Apgar wrote:
It's just that biomechanics dictates that there are only so many ways that the human body can move and so there are really only a few different general climbing techniques. I can see Mono's point, it get's a little old when people want to reinvent the wheel every few months... it's sort of like some of the training discussions. (Had to throw that in, figured that Mono would get a smirk out of it given you end up in on a lot of those posts.) That's also why I said that I wasn't trying to be a smartass. If you have a decent bouldering area in the local gym you can log a lot of time doing awkward moves and you'll figure out when you need to maybe start a move w/ a heel and then switch it to a toe or when cross body foot positions give you better leverage....etc. cheers all... and have a happy holiday season. BA


I don't see how this is trying to reinvent the wheel. As the article stated it is a variation of the twist lock. A ring lock is a variation of a finger lock that has a specialized use...Is that trying to reinvent the wheel too? I posted this simply because I have not seen it done this way. This is a training discussion forum if I'm not mistaken. Happy holidays to you as well.


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By Joshua1979
From Colorado Springs, CO
Dec 15, 2011

I played around with this a bit last night and here are my thoughts for those that care. In my limited experimentation it only really seemed beneficial when pulling a roof onto a vertical or past vertical wall or on really steep terrain as there needs to be space for your body to roll. More often then not on steep terrain it was better to outside edge rather than heel hook and then it just becomes the familiar twist lock. However, when pulling a lip I did find that switching the heel hook to the inside leg and stretching the outside leg away from the body (think 90 degree angle) did allow for body to roll and the reaching arm to gain more distance with relative ease.

This may be an intuitive instinct for some climbers but for those that have not tried this I'd encourage you to play around with it as it is good 'technique' to have in the bag for those times when you need extra reach pulling a lip. For those having trouble visualizing here is a pic I found on the web of a climber that looks like he's setting up to execute the final stages of the move.

cross-hook
cross-hook


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By Finn the Human
From The Land of Ooo
Dec 15, 2011
Mathematical!

Twisting your body so you can reach higher is an actual technique with an actual name and it's own specialized variations? I thought it was just common sense.


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By Joshua1979
From Colorado Springs, CO
Dec 16, 2011

Taylor Ogden wrote:
Twisting your body so you can reach higher is an actual technique with an actual name

Yes, it is commonly referred to as a twist lock.

Taylor Ogden wrote:
I thought it was just common sense.


Based on my observations twisting is not common sense for a lot of climbers. I also observe that common sense is not so common. For instance common sense would say read through a thread prior to commenting but I can tell from your response that you didn't as you are missing the point. It's not the twisting that makes the move unique...It's the extension of the outside leg, providing a counter weight, thereby allowing one to turn without much power output. That's what makes it cool IMO but YMMV.


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By Joshua1979
From Colorado Springs, CO
Dec 16, 2011

sawyer wylie wrote:
I believe Dave Graham does this near the end of the bouldering film REACH on a V14 in Colorado.

Just checked out the trailer...Cinematography looks pretty sick. Thanks for the heads up.


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By Finn the Human
From The Land of Ooo
Dec 16, 2011
Mathematical!

Joshua1979 wrote:
Yes, it is commonly referred to as a twist lock. Based on my observations twisting is not common sense for a lot of climbers. I also observe that common sense is not so common. For instance common sense would say read through a thread prior to commenting but I can tell from your response that you didn't as you are missing the point. It's not the twisting that makes the move unique...It's the extension of the outside leg, providing a counter weight, thereby allowing one to turn without much power output. That's what makes it cool IMO but YMMV.


I actually did read the thread, thanks :)

I suppose my confusion comes from the fact that it's a technique I've done for years and had no clue it had a name and no one ever "taught" it to me.


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By twistlock
Dec 25, 2012

Taylor Ogden wrote:
I actually did read the thread, thanks :) I suppose my confusion comes from the fact that it's a technique I've done for years and had no clue it had a name and no one ever "taught" it to me.


Rock Climbing Moves Glossary


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