Creating a more informed MN climbing community!

CLIMB SMART MN HAS REACHED ITS DONATION THRESHOLD!  Due to generous donations by previous clients, start up costs have been covered and now it is time to start giving back to the community. Future donations to Climb Smart MN will be shared among our climbing community. Groups like the MCA, Access Fund, and the TCRC Meetup group will now benefit from your donations! Do your part. Learn new things. Help your community. 

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As a part of the Minnesota climbing community, we all need to do our part to look after each other. Over the last few years it has become clear to me that there are many different ideas about how to climb and use gear, many of which are incorrect. I would like to offer my knowledge and expertise to improve our climbing community.  I have ten years of teaching and guiding experience all over the country on many types of rock. Take a look at some of the courses and skills and let me know if there is anything I can help you out with either in the gym or at the crag.  If there is anything more specific that you would like to work on, let me know and we can try to work something out. Whatever the topic, I will figure out where you are at and take you to the next level.  Below is a list of suggested classes that I offer.

Crank on!

Indoor Sessions
Meet me at the gym. You let me know when and where. 
Each session usually runs about one hour.  

Climb Smart MN- Technique Series     

Level 1: Basic Posture and Composure

“Find your space on the wall.”   

Whether it is your first time on the wall or you have been climbing for years, without proper posture, a climber can experience energy drain, miss obvious footholds, and severely limit their own movement potential. Learn how to establish a confident position both physically and mentally from the very first hold. Find a comfortable space to work in and move through as you experiment with your body positioning.

Level 2: Movement and Balance

“Control your destiny.”   

When off balance, a climber needlessly expends energy negotiating the pull of gravity and has little left over for their desired movement. Explore your balance and discover techniques that will help you keep it while on the wall. Learn to use your body to extend your reach and control your movement, even when holds are scarce. Find ways to recharge while on the wall and increase your stamina.

Level 3: Following a Route

“Shall we dance?”   

A well set route should subtly indicate which techniques provide a climber’s best chance of fluidly moving through the sequence. Climbers often ignore these cues and waste time and energy moving awkwardly through a series of errors. Learn how to “hear” these cues and respond to them.  Discuss common climbing vocabulary that will help a climber analyze most of a route before tying in. Learn to break routes into individual moves and how to link those moves into a beautifully complex line.

Special Topics: Dihedrals and Slabs

“Feeling cornered?” “Slip sliding away?” Dihedrals and Slabs require the utmost body control and confidence as there is usually little to actually hold on to.  Discover the most useful techniques and mindsets for these scenarios and gain a useful toolkit for when the holds run out.

Special Topics: Overhangs

“Hang in there, baby!” Overhangs can make a climber feel tired, scared, lost, or trapped.  While they do require a bit of strength, some of your basic Techniques covered in the previous classes can make the process way more manageable. Use the technique you already have, along with a few new tricks, to help you overcome the roof.

Special Topics: Crack

“Get all up in it!” Double your outdoor climbing ability by learning how to make a hold where previously there was nothing. Learn hand and foot jamming technique along with proper posture and movement in the alternate universe that is the exotic realm of crack climbing.

Special Topics: Leading

“Lead, follow, or get out of the way!" Leading requires a different mental skill set than bouldering or toproping. Brush up on the basics of indoor sport leading. Review clipping technique along with lead route sequencing. Learn how to climb more confidently with decreased fall distances and a more confident attitude.

Outdoor Sessions
Carpool or meet me at the crag. Learn a variety of site specific outdoor skills.

Outdoor Sport Leading
Heading to Redwing or Sandstone? Brush up on your climbing and belaying techniques, learn about clipping theories, setting up sport anchors AND how to push yourself to the limit without leaving gear behind! Recommended for beginning and intermediate lead climbers.  Runs about 2-3 hours.  Recommended for groups of 2-4.

Top Rope Anchors
Heading to Taylor's Falls, Blue Mounds, North Shore or Devil's Lake? You are going to need a trusty anchor. Maybe you have some anchor knowledge but anchor setups vary with terrain and rock type. Anchors do not give you feedback until someone gets hurt. Make sure you know what you are doing.  Learn how to make safe and efficient anchors.  We can spend the day talking about anchor theory, different types of anchors, gear and placement.   I will analyze what you know and take it from there.  Recommended for 1-2 people.  Bringing your own gear is the best way to learn but  it is not necessary. This class can runs 4-8 hours depending on how in depth you would like to go.

North Shore Survival Guide
Climbing at the North Shore can be a little intimidating. Often you will see people belaying from precarious positions and lowering people that they can barely manage. Learn a tested system for getting climbers down the wall and back up again while safely managing your rope and anchors. This class is specifically tailored to climbing where you start on top of the cliff.  We can do this class at Taylor's or even in a local park on the horizontal.  Runs 2-4 hours depending on level of experience with anchors. 
Recommended for 2-4 people.

Intro to Trad Leading
Want to take your outdoor game to the next level?
Trad leading is a whole different kind of beast. It requires more than just good climbing skill.  Your gear placements need to be sound and your mind aware of your surroundings. Learn about good gear placements and also how to create a line that reduces rope drag and is convenient for your follow. Learn multi pitch skills like compact anchors, rope management, top belay, and small compact anchors that can be used on multi pitch climbs. This class is recommended for climbers who are familiar to outdoor climbing and have some of their own gear. 
Recommended for 1-2 people class will take about 2-4 hours. 

If there is anything else you would like to learn, please don't hesitate to contact me. I may be able to teach you or at least point you in the right direction. 

Climb Smart MN is not a business. It is an initiative to educate our climbing community. My services are donation based. The information and training that I deliver is current, accurate, and practical. If you find value in what we have worked on, please consider donating.  In the past people have offered to cover travel expenses and given gifts of around $15-20 per hour for the time, energy, and planning that goes into each personalized lesson. The goal of Climb Smart MN is to better our climbing community. Once my startup costs are covered I will donate a part of my proceeds to climbing organizations like MCA, TCRC Meetup, and The Access Fund.

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