• Coming Back From Injury
  • Get Trip-Fit Fast
  • Systems Wall and Symmetrical Training
  • Coaching Climbing - How To Train Juniors with Care and Caution
  • Grip Trainers - Gimmicks, or Worth the Money?
  • Hangboarding for Endurance: Not Just for Power
  • Simulation Training: How to Do a Move You Can't Do
  • Planning a Year's Climbing
  • Portable Training Rigs - How to Stay Fit on the Go
  • How to Keep Your Job and Family and Still Climb at Your Limit
  • Suspension Training for Rock Climbing
  • Eat Fat, Climb Harder - The Ketogenic Diet
  • Witness the Mental Fitness: Set Thought Aside to Improve Performance
  • Mental Training Made Simple
  • Counterintuitive Climbing Tips to Change Your Game - Part 2
  • Endurance Training Tips for Winter
  • Five Counterintuitive Climbing Tips to Change Your Game - Part 1
  • Staying Power - How to Last All Day at the Crag
  • Attack and Defend - Tips for Effective Resting
  • Change Up - Plug the Gaps In Your Strength Training This Winter
  • Training While Injured
  • The Hard Way, Easier: How to Cope with Redpoint Nerves
  • Climbing Literacy - Get Better Instantly by Reading Routes
  • The Numbers Game - How to Use Your Age to Your Advantage
  • Injury-Free Bouldering: 15 Tips to Keep You Healthy and Strong
  • Injury-Free Boarding: 14 Training Tips to Save Your Fingers
  • The Truth About Caffeine and Climbing
  • Pushing Past Your Training Plateau
  • Five Strategies to Sharpen Concentration and Climb Better
  • Five Ways to Get Better Without Training
  • Beat the Burnout: Only Ondra Should Train Like Ondra
  • Effective Gym Training Strategies (for Route Climbing)
  • Should You Add Weight or Use Smaller Holds on a Hangboard?
  • Map Out a Plan with the Radar System
  • Managing the Fear of Falling
  • Projecting 101 – 6 Tips For Sending
  • Slowing the Pump Clock - Three Strategies to Prevent the Pump
  • Training on the Go
  • How to Train for Compression
  • Nutrition: Eating Your Way to Better Climbing
  • How to Dyno
  • General Conditioning for Climbers
  • Transitioning from Gym to Crag
  • Staying Strong to Perform Your Best All Season
  • How to Lose Weight for Climbing
  • Building a Better Climber: Final Phase - Peaking
  • Building a Better Climber: Phase 7 - Power Endurance Training
  • Building a Better Climber: Phase 6 - Endurance II
  • Building a Better Climber: Phase 5 - Strength and Power II
  • The Training Effect - Steve House and Scott Johnston
  • Training for Climbing: Injured? Train Your Core!
  • Building a Better Climber: Phase 4 - Power Endurance
  • Building a Better Climber: Phase 3 - Strength Training
  • Building a Better Climber: Phase 2 - Low-Intensity Endurance
  • Building a Better Climber: Phase 1 - Conditioning Phase
  • Gain Confidence by Learning Not to Fear Falling
  • Get Better When You Are Scared and Pumped
  • Never Get Pumped Again
  • Gutbusters - Core Exercises for Rock Climbing
  • Rest ... or Else
  • The Intuitive Approach to Training
  • Free Climbing Tips: Why Get Stronger When You Can Get Better?
  • Crank Like a Russian - How to Power Train for Climbing
  • How to Mentally Train
  • Boost Power With Eccentric Training
  • Tips for Better Onsighting
  • Should You Lose Weight or Get Stronger?
  • Is Protein Important?
  • Getting Strong After a Layoff
  • Does Running or Biking Improve Your Climbing?
  • Training While Hungry
  • How To Use Microcycles
  • How to Improve Slab Technique
  • How to Unlock a Crux
  • How to Use a Hangboard
  • Using a Weight Belt For Training
  • Training During Pregnancy
  • Maximizing a Small Home Wall
  • How to Stay Psyched
  • How to Prevent Bonking
  • Best Ratio of Resting to Bouldering
  • The Importance of Finger Strength
  • Regaining Confidence After a Fall
  • Overcome Anxiety and Send!
  • Maximum Training in Minimum Time
  • Dynamic vs. Static Stretching
  • Do Forearm Trainers Work?
  • Ultimate Strength
  • The Secrets of Warming Up
  • Periodized Training For the Year-round Approach
  • Resting the Perfect Amount
  • How To Recover On Route
  • Does Creatine Work?
  • Recovery Supplement Truths
  • Euro Training Secrets
  • Can Old Guys Get Stronger?
  • Training With an Injury
  • How to Beat Fear
  • How Often Should You Rest?
  • Warming Up Without Warm-Ups
  • How to Develop Sloper Strength
  • Beating the Lactic Acid Pump
  • Video Spotlight
    Alex Honnold Solos Lover's Leap in Dan Osman Tribute
    Alex Honnold Solos Lover's Leap in Dan Osman Tribute
    Whipper of the Month
    Weekend Whipper: Chris Sharma's 100-foot Pont d’Arc Deep Water Solo
    Weekend Whipper: Chris Sharma's 100-foot Pont d’Arc Deep Water Solo
     



    Slowing the Pump Clock - Three Strategies to Prevent the Pump

    24-Aug-2015
    By Eric Hörst

    This article was previously published on Training4Climbing.com.

    Three Strategies to Prevent the Pump

    Use these tips, and you’ll find the pump clock ticking slower, regardless of your current strength or ability.Training to get stronger is a good thing. Climbing in ways that conserve energy and enable more rapid recovery is a smart thing!

    While both of these strategies are valid for improving climbing performance, many climbers obsess on getting stronger while not recognizing the value of optimizing their use of strength and accelerating recovery. It’s a fact that the very best climbers are all strong, yet not every strong climber becomes the very best. The difference often lies in the subtle areas of economy of movement and the ability to prevent the pump and maximize recovery on a climb. The following three strategies do just this. Use them, and you’ll find the pump clock ticking slower, regardless of your current strength or ability.

     

    1. Practice climbing with more economy.

    This might seem obvious, yet most climbers get poor fuel economy when climbing near their limit. Do you climb more like a Buick or a Honda? Learning to climb more efficiently requires a conscious effort, so get a partner and make a game out of it. The following are energy-conserving techniques to practice on moderate routes or in the safe setting of a gym. 1. Predetermine the rest positions on a route and only chalk-up and rest there. Climb briskly from one rest to the next. 2. Limit your time on any given hold to five seconds or less, the exception being rest positions. Climb past the smallest, pumpy holds as fast as possible. 3. Vary your grip position as often as possible. Alternate between the crimp grip, open hand grip, thumb lock, pinch, pocket grip, and such, as often as the rock allows. Don’t miss a chance to sink a hand jam or finger lock—these are great energy saving grips that many face climbers miss.

     

    2. Flex your fingers and wrist between grips.

    For many climbers, recovering on a route is something they just let happen. To take a proactive role in the recovery process, however, is one of the subtle differences that separate the best from the rest. One such strategy is to open-and-close your fingers or flex your wrist between each grip. This is something you must do in just the second or two it takes to reach from one hold to the next. Simply think about flicking water off your fingers or hand as your reach for the next hold—that’s the motion you are after. This simple process spurs on blood flow—which actually stops during times of maximum gripping—through the forearm muscles, and the aggregate effect of doing this between every grip will produce a significant reduction in your accumulated pump.

     

    3. Use the G-Tox to speed recovery at rests.

    The “G-Tox.” Photo: Training4Climbing.com.The “dangling arm” shakeout is the technique universally used to foster recovery from a pump. There is a more effective method for accelerating forearm recovery, however, that I call G-Tox. It involves alternating the position of your resting arm between the normal dangling position and an above-your-head position. Consider that the discomfort and pump you feel in the forearms is largely the result of restricted blood flow and increasing intramuscular acidosis. While the dangling arm shakeout does allow the blood flow into the forearm to resume, flow of “stale” blood out of the forearm is sluggish due to the arm position below your heart. The result is a traffic jam of sorts, which perpetuates the pump and slows recovery. (Have you ever noticed how the pump often increases as you begin the shakeout process with your arm by your side?) The G-Tox technique makes gravity your ally by aiding venous return to the heart. This enhances the removal H+ ion (which lower blood pH and hampers function) and helps restore homeostasis. The effects of this technique are unmistakable—you will literally see your pump “drained” as you elevate your arm. Use the G-Tox at all your mid-climb shakeouts by deliberately alternating the position of your resting arm, between raise-hand and dangling position, every five to ten seconds. 

     

    Related Articles

    Beating the Lactic Acid Pump

    Avoiding the Gear-Placement Pump

    Beat the Ice-Climbing Pump

     


      About the Author:

    An accomplished climber of more than 38 years, Eric is an internationally renowned author, researcher, and climbing coach. Eric is the world’s most widely published climbing coach with six books (and many foreign translations) selling more than 300,000 copies, including his best-selling tome Training for Climbing, and hundreds of magazine and Web articles published. A self-professed “climber for life”, Eric remains active at the cliffs and as a researcher, author, and coach. His website is: Training4Climbing.com




    Reader's Commentary:

    Don't want to use Facebook, but still want to comment? We have you covered:

    Add Your Comments to this article:

    Hello