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Group Exercise Classes?

Original Post
Robert Rowsam · · Grand Junction, CO · Joined Oct 2012 · Points: 90

I got priced out of my local climbing gym a while back and recently got a membership at a regular ol' gym. They offer all the mainstream group classes like P90X, BodyPump, Insanity, etc.. I don't have any experience these type of classes, though at the climbing gym I enjoyed a small tabata style class and found it translated pretty well to real world climbing. 

Are the mainstream group classes like this very beneficial to climbing? Or general fitness even?   

Chris C. · · Seattle, WA · Joined Mar 2016 · Points: 337

Back in the day I did some P90X and Insanity. They are both good. They are very well rounded workouts, so great for general fitness. 

sandrock · · Colorado Springs, CO · Joined Jul 2013 · Points: 115

I enjoy them, I tend to get a better workout with others in a group setting.  While they don't do specific climbing training, I think any exercise is helpful. 

Robert Rowsam · · Grand Junction, CO · Joined Oct 2012 · Points: 90

Thanks for the input!

Does anyone have any experience with BodyPump specifically? That one is going to work best with my schedule. 

sherb · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Dec 2012 · Points: 60

I had experience with BodyPump 15 years ago before I started climbing.  From what I remember it was weights, higher reps for toning and not building muscle, which is beneficial for climbers, since climbers do not want to build bulky muscle.  Although it won't specifically target your climbing, it will help balance your muscles by working opposing muscle groups so you don't become off balance.  

Nick Drake · · Newcastle, WA · Joined Jan 2015 · Points: 491

"Is Crossfit good training for climbing?

My first reaction to this question was "you can't be serious," but the question comes around so frequently that I thought I'd better elaborate. Crossfit, if you don't know, is a generalized high-intensity sport built on randomly programmed, ever-changing workouts. It's stated goal is to create good general fitness and hypertrophy in its participants, focusing on what they consider to be the ten essential qualities of fitness.

For climbers that have no base fitness, any general exercise program will do to help increase the physical capacity of the athlete. But for an advanced climber, the training needs to become more specific. There is no climber that can maintain maximum performance levels in any single facet of the sport year-round. Likewise, there is no climber that can perform at his max level in every facet of the climbing game concurrently. It's important that this is clear. Too many climbers have an unrealistic view of what they can truly handle in a given season.  Adding high-intensity exercise of a different sort, whether it be Crossfit, running, or cutting firewood will only pull from an athlete's training reserves, reserves that must be focused completely on hard climbing when hard climbing is the goal.

There are, of course, exceptions to this rule. Off-season build-ups, attempts to increase one's work-capacity, antagonist/durability training, and increasing one's general conditioning can and should be done using other means than actual climbing.

As the inscription at Delphi reads, though, "know thyself." If your climbing technique sucks, adding strength and power to it will not make you a better climber."

Guideline #1: Don't be a jerk.

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