As you transition from preparation to action, you move from one skill set to another. In action, you use the doing skill set; you focus attention on acting out your plan. If you drag thinking into doing, you mix skill sets and attention will be diffused between the two, limiting the effectiveness of either process. Remember, climbing includes stopping and moving. Thinking occurs when you stop, at mini and micro decision points. Then you move between them. Remember to stop and think, OR move and do. Students in the Espresso Clinic learn the mantra, “When you rest, rest; when you climb, climb.” This helps them separate the skill sets of thinking and doing.
In the Transitions chapter we discussed how to break free of thinking. Heighten your state of arousal by doing a few deliberate exhales. Breathing shifts attention out of your head and into your body, and helps you break free.

Wy_2010 159-w900-h700As you transition from preparation to action, you move from one skill set to another. In action, you use the doing skill set; you focus attention on acting out your plan. If you drag thinking into doing, you mix skill sets and attention will be diffused between the two, limiting the effectiveness of either process. Remember, climbing includes stopping and moving. Thinking occurs when you stop, at mini and micro decision points. Then you move between them. Remember to stop and think, OR move and do. Students in the Espresso Clinic learn the mantra, “When you rest, rest; when you climb, climb.” This helps them separate the skill sets of thinking and doing.

For making decisions we discussed how to break free of thinking. Heighten your state of arousal by doing a few deliberate exhales. Breathing shifts attention out of your head and into your body, and helps you break free.

This Post Has One Comment

  1. I think I’m getting better at doing this when I climb something that doesn’t intimidate me. Oddly though, the same thing also seems to apply when I reach a hard crux move – if I shut off my brain and trust my body and skills to pull through the move that often works too. I think I lose it when something throws off my equilibrium, like not seeing my next gear, feeling off-route, not seeing how to climb the next section, or just get scared, etc. I suppose those are the moments this kind of training is key for – doing the right thing when your instincts and emotions are adding noise to the signal.

    Another important thing about this approach is that it can significantly speed up one’s climbing by cutting out a lot of time wasting and unnecessary hesitation. I’ve been trying to speed up (largely to keep from putting my belayer to sleep) and this helps.

    I must admit when I first read the title of this entry, it made me think it could also apply to getting out on the rock. It can be such a challenge to find partners you feel comfortable climbing with, aligning schedules, then hoping the weather cooperates…

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