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Do You French Blow?
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Administrator
Jul 18, 2011
Do you do the French blow? I think it's a euro thing but i see people do it in the states pretty often, or maybe I'm just weird. The french blow is when you chalk up, but then blow on your hand for some reason. I don't know if it's to remind you to breathe, for flare, or if it blows the extra chalk off for maximum friction!

Lets try to get some stats here.
1. Yes/ No
2. Why or why not?
3. What type of climbing do you do?

for me:
1. Yes
2. I don't know why, it's like smoking. You don't know why you start, but can't seem to stop. I do feel like it helps a lot sometimes
3. I'm an all-around climber sport, trad, boulder.
Monty
From Golden, CO
Joined Mar 13, 2006
2,664 points
Jul 18, 2011
FACT: No one knows what you are talking about. Stich
From Colorado Springs, Colorado
Joined Jan 1, 2001
1,230 points
Jul 18, 2011
Stich wrote:
FACT: No one knows what you are talking about.


+1. I even googled it. Nothing.
Jeremy Monahan
From Fort Fun, CO
Joined May 18, 2002
215 points
Jul 18, 2011
I know what you are talking about.

1. yes I do it.
2. an attempt to dry the moisture between fingers and to get the extra unnecessary chalk off the finger tips (better friction).
3. I only do it sport climbing.
Red
From Tacoma, Toyota
Joined Sep 11, 2008
1,348 points
Jul 18, 2011
I know what your talking about but I don't do it. JJNS
Joined Sep 30, 2008
350 points
Jul 18, 2011
What exactly do the French have to do with this vague act? Stich
From Colorado Springs, Colorado
Joined Jan 1, 2001
1,230 points
Jul 18, 2011
Stich wrote:
What exactly do the French have to do with this vague act?

it's like grabbing draws; a lot of them seem to do it.
Red
From Tacoma, Toyota
Joined Sep 11, 2008
1,348 points
Jul 18, 2011
1. yup (but i call it the Euro Blow)
2. because its cool, especially mid move.
3. rock
Darren Mabe
From Flagstaff, AZ
Joined Dec 12, 2002
2,810 points
Jul 18, 2011
You know what? I guess I do... I think it just started recently though, i must have seen one of my climbing idols doing it and then thought i would be cool like them if I did too. I mean, if it helps some european superdude send his projects, why shouldn't it help me send mine?

Then again.. every time I chalk up these days I think about Earl Wiggins climbing the Cruise free solo with no chalk bag.. then I start to feel silly and stop chalking, at which point I will start french blowing if i'm not quite ready to get on with the business because i've already ruled out more chalk as an option..

Does that answer your question?
RyanO
From sunshine
Joined Jun 9, 2009
125 points
Jul 18, 2011
OK, without searching for this, I'm taking a stab at it. This is the act of dabbing a ton of chalk on the hands and then blowing each hand to remove the excess, thusly creating an impressive cloud.

Am I right?
Stich
From Colorado Springs, Colorado
Joined Jan 1, 2001
1,230 points
Administrator
Jul 18, 2011
1. Yes I do
2. Because I put excessive amount of chalk on my hands, especially at rests right before the crux.
3. 50% sport, 40% trad, 10% boulder
Dom
From New Brunswick Canada
Joined Dec 8, 2007
1,075 points
Jul 18, 2011
Don't forget the wine. Cheese eating surrender monkeys.

Climbing.

Although whether the fingertip chalk blow actually helps on hard redpoints has yet to be proven, the practice is ubiquitous. The “Euroblow” was in fact popularized by French mega-star Patrick Edlinger in the documentary La vie au bout des doigts (1982), in which we see the trademark blow giving him amazing free-soloing powers, augmented only by filmy running shorts and a red bandana, in France’s Verdon Gorge. Wrote Dale Goddard in a 1988 Climbing piece: “Ever since Edlinger popularized the practice… the French have been conspicuously turning their heads to the side and with a casual expression, blowing their fingertips.”

Another Thread.
matt.l.b
Joined Mar 2, 2008
0 points
Jul 18, 2011
1. Sometimes and
1. I don't know why
2. I climb everything but I do it a lot ice climbing, makes the digits warm and substitutes glove s :)
Owen Darrow
From Garmisch,
Joined Feb 22, 2010
1,916 points
Jul 18, 2011
Stich wrote:
What exactly do the French have to do with this vague act?


climbing.com/exclusive/feature...

See #9:

9 Although whether the fingertip chalk blow actually helps on hard redpoints has yet to be proven, the practice is ubiquitous. The “Euroblow” was in fact popularized by French mega-star Patrick Edlinger in the documentary La vie au bout des doigts (1982), in which we see the trademark blow giving him amazing free-soloing powers, augmented only by filmy running shorts and a red bandana, in France’s Verdon Gorge. Wrote Dale Goddard in a 1988 Climbing piece: “Ever since Edlinger popularized the practice… the French have been conspicuously turning their heads to the side and with a casual expression, blowing their fingertips.”
doligo
Joined Sep 26, 2008
212 points
Administrator
Jul 18, 2011
you know, every once in a while i get excited and do it, but i usually end up accidently spitting on my fingers, which results in the need to chalk up again. slim
Joined Dec 1, 2004
885 points
Jul 18, 2011
NO, and nice to blame this action on the French; glad it's not the Brits or Italians this time. Woodchuck ATC
Joined Nov 29, 2007
505 points
Administrator
Jul 18, 2011
should probably rename it the 'freedom blow" ! slim
Joined Dec 1, 2004
885 points
Jul 18, 2011
There's a mom joke in there somewhere....

1) Yes
2) Mainly I do it to remove chalk from my hands(duh). I hate getting on routes that are covered with years of chalk. "To Defy the Laws of Tradition" at the Red River Gorge comes to mind. It's a 5.10, and it's basically one solid wall of chalk.

If it's cooler, sometimes I'll just wipe my hand on my pants instead. But when it's hot out, there really is no dry part of me (except my freshly-chalked hands). "The blow" seems like the most practical solution.

3) Trad, sport. Rarely go to the gym.
Chuck Parks
From Atlanta, GA
Joined Jan 30, 2008
1,666 points
Jul 18, 2011
slim wrote:
should probably rename it the 'freedom blow" !



Agreed. I fondly remember that brief, embarassing time of renewed hatred of the French for their lack on enthusiasm for warmongering. I bolted a forgettable sport route at Reimer's Ranch near Austin and named it "Freedom Fries." Sadly, it didn't make it in the guide book, and so is long fogotten.
Stich
From Colorado Springs, Colorado
Joined Jan 1, 2001
1,230 points
Jul 18, 2011
The French Blow is big fun, do it all the time just to annoy my buddies. caughtinside
From Oakland CA
Joined Nov 21, 2006
1,415 points
Jul 18, 2011
slim wrote:
should probably rename it the 'freedom blow" !


Definitely the best comment yet. So many places to go with it..

I find myself not using chalk for multiple pitches in a row and then needing it all of a sudden. I sometimes use the "French Blow" several times in a row on said pitch. I think it's because I only use Bison's Competition Chalk, which seems to be super fine. At least that's what I keep telling myself.
Marc H
From Denver
Joined May 10, 2007
20 points
Jul 18, 2011
Only when I'm ice climbing... sometimes if I get too gripped on radical aid.



but never my partner...


sorry.
Kirk Miller
From Golden, CO
Joined May 13, 2003
1,335 points
Jul 18, 2011
Stich wrote:
FACT: No one knows what you are talking about.



I know exactly what you are talking about.

1: Yes either blow or slap it off on my pant leg.
2: Because it's a habbit, because I keep a lot of chalk in my chalk bag and if there is too much on my hand it gets slick.
3: Sport, Trad, Boulder, Ice, Mixed, and Plastic... everything but Aid

I never blow at my partner, though I have been diagnosed sever chalkinhilationitus from my clouds.
Keith H. North
From Englewood, CO
Joined Mar 29, 2010
148 points
Jul 18, 2011
Been doing it for a while, I usually wipe my hand on my pants/bandana (whichever is less drenched in sweat), chalk up, then blow the excess chalk off. I'm glad this technique has a name that I can now make fun of..

1. Yes
2. improves friction/looks badass
3. sport/trad
HankG Greene
From Flagstaff, AZ
Joined Oct 2, 2010
41 points
Jul 18, 2011
1) Yes
2) To remove excess chalk improving friction
3) Everything

I am convinced it helps achieve maximum friction. Obviously if you had a 1/4" thick layer of chalk on your hands you would have no friction. Its all about finding just the right amount of chalk.
Vaughn
Joined Mar 21, 2011
43 points
Jul 18, 2011
I dont use chalk, its bad for the environment. Marathon
Joined Jul 12, 2010
302 points


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