Overcome Your Fear of Falling
By Arno Ilgner and Climbing Magazine
What You’ll Learn:
I once watched a climbing-gym instructor coach a student on how to take a fall. The student, Jamie, was on lead, her hands clutching the finish jug of the route, the last bolt at their feet.
Jamie wasn’t ready to fall, but the instructor persuaded her to let go.
Jaime screamed as she whipped and felt, for the first time, the lack of control that causes the fear of falling.
There was no injury, but it was a traumatic experience—Jamie didn’t climb for half an hour afterward, and when she returned to the gym later that week, she was reluctant to attempt a route where she might fall.
Falling is an inherent risk of climbing—there’s no way around it. But you don’t have to let your fear of falling rule the way you climb; it doesn’t have to get in the way of sending your dream route or enjoying your precious days at the crag.
Learning how to fall is an essential part of improving as a climber. But it’s so much more than just letting go and having your belayer catch you.
Even Elite Climbers Can Fear Falling
Fear of falling is something that even elite climbers encounter—it’s a hardwired, evolutionary response —but we can all learn to push past that fear and focus on the next move.
In this course, with the help of elite climber Molly Mitchell, I take you through the field-tested and proven steps I’ve developed over 20 years to ensure that fear doesn’t hold you back.
I have worked with many elite climbers, including Heather Weidner, Nina Williams, and Katie Jo Myers, to help them send some of the hardest climbs in the world. The Warrior’s Way proven methods work for casual weekend warriors as well those who #vanlife and climb everyday.
From understanding the root of your fear to incremental skill-building, this course will help you overcome your fear of falling, too.
How This Course Works
You’ll learn through a variety of interactive formats, including:
- Video & photo how tos
- Detailed step by step instruction
- Exercises to do while climbing
- Q&A at the end of each section
Each lesson builds on the last, and, while we’ve designed the course to be 5 weeks long, you can take it as quickly or slowly as you want.
Plus, once you purchase the course, the lessons are yours forever.
We are confident that this course will help to diminish your fear of falling. If you don’t find it helpful, we offer a 14 day risk-free refund.
We know you have a busy schedule, so we’ve designed this course to be taken at your own pace.
Why a Course on the
Fear of Falling
- Having a fear of falling is the number one limiter in climbing better and enjoying climbing.
- Falling is a natural part of climbing but we never learn how to do it .
- We want climbing to be fun and enjoyable, not scary!
Frequently Ask Questions
As a climber, you’re bound to already have the required gear: harness, shoes, rope, helmet, belay device, and a chalk bag. You’ll need a belayer for lead climbing drills; most of the skills and drills in the course can be done at the rock gym. The course does, cover trad falls, so you’d need a rack for that lesson; however, if you don’t trad climb, you can skip that part.
This course will definitely make you more comfortable falling. But overcoming your fear of falling requires commitment and practice—and that part is up to you.
If you’re hindered by a fear of falling, then yes! This course is designed to help you focus your attention on the sequence in front of you, not on anxiety, mental chatter, and other internal distractions. Climbers of all abilities will find the material helpful to understand how to use their attention to get the most out of their climbing experience.
There’s two parts to that answer. One, being comfortable falling requires commitment and ongoing practice, so keep at it. If you feel stuck, contact Arno with questions and concerns. We offer a variety of personalized training options that will help you investigate challenges.
It really depends on what those fears are, though certainly addressing one of the most primal fears encountered while climbing—falling—can help. Part of overcoming your fear of falling is about cultivating mindfulness and being able to control how you react to any feelings that arise. You can then carry that mindfulness over to your entire life—including other aspects of climbing and any other real-world challenges you may face.
While the course is unavailable to download, it’s accessible from anywhere with internet access.
Who teaches the course?
Other climbers frequently note me as a pioneering rock climber with bold and dangerous first ascents in the 1970s and ‘80s. After a while, friends and other climbers asked me to help them develop a similar mental ability, eventually leading to the creation of the unique mental training program called The Warrior’s Way.
Since 1995, I’ve helped thousands of students, from every-day climbers to pro climbers like Nina, sharpen their awareness, focus attention, and understand challenges within a learning-based, risk-taking philosophy that makes climbing better.
I hold an American Mountain Guides Association Single Pitch Instructor certification, and reside with family in Nashville, Tennessee.
Climbing Magazine and I designed this course to go at your own pace; do what you can when you can.
If you have questions or need help, just reach out. I want you to succeed and am happy to answer your questions.
Climb Smoothly, Confidently. No more Shaky Legs and Pumping Adrenaline
Here’s what past students have said about the course:
What’s Included in
Overcome Your Fear of Falling
- Lifetime access.
- Step by step instruction and exercises to diminish your fear of falling.
- Specific exercises you can do at home, at the gym, at the cliff.
- Satisfaction Guarantee. Don’t love it? Let us know within 14 days, and we’ll give you a full refund.
If you have any questions or concerns about the course, call or email us. We’re happy to help.
615-406-3404 or email@example.com