Rock Climbing CompanyAssociation of Mountaineering Instructors

Performance Rock Climbing Coaching


Climbing hard at Loja on perfect rock


belay in sight!


Climbing in spain


gritsone gorilla






Performance Rock - Climbing Coaching


Silvia at Pen Trwyn

The Performance Rock Climbing Coaching course is for climbers who want to take a fresh look at how they climb. We will look at the all the obvious facets of climbing from technique, movement skills, power, endurance and confidence; but more than this we will look at approaching each climb with better foresight, planning and tactics. This will let you climb more effectively and efficiently.


These insights are often difficult to achieve without advice and help from a more experienced climber who is able to both analyse weaknesses and also suggest methods of overcoming them.

Silvia is highly skilled at identifying the factors which may be holding people back and finding strategies to overcome these. The coaching session will give you a new viewpoint on your strengths and weaknesses.

Silvia is well qualified for coaching clients to maximise their potential. She studied for 5 years to gain a Sports Science / Physical Education degree in Buenos Aires whilst simultaneously becoming South American climbing champion. She was invited to Europe to represent South America in the 'Climb for the World' television extravaganza and after climbing the North Face of the Eiger for the TV program stayed in Europe, climbing routes up to 8a+ before a ground fall put her in hospital for six months. The accident left her with nerve damage and movement restrictions that meant she had to learn to climb again with a totally different technique; after a lot of hard work she bounced back to win the British Climbing Championships and has also since then led E6 on traditional gear, flashed 7c and red pointed 8b.

The coaching will concentrate on achieving the end result of making you feel more confident in your climbing abilities as this is a key element in you achieving your personal goals. We will look at technique, movement and body position, but more than that we will look at the overall combination to help you become a more complete climber who is motivated and believes in their own ability. Thus when you stand below your next project you have the belief that you can send it.

We will ask for detailed information about your current climbing performance and then plan an appropriate coaching program designed to help you improve specific areas of weakness. We will also suggest mental approaches and training strategies that will help you to achieve your personal goals.

Virtually every rock climbing course we offer is bespoke and built around you and your needs - the broad outline above is just that because everybody's needs are different so please don't hesitate to contact us if you want more information or have any questions.

There is also a General Climbing Course Information page dealing with common questions on our climbing courses.



Performance Climbing Tips


climbing at El Chorro El Oraculo

Performance Climbing Tips

The following tips are a useful starting point for improving your climbing performance – they cover techniques to let you conserve energy and help you recover quickly when you are pumped. There are a few pointers on how to move more efficiently on the rock plus a little bit of hard earned climbing sense built in. 
This article is not about getting stronger, it’s about climbing more effectively and intelligently with the resources that already have.

Performance Climbing Tip 1.
Warm Up and Stretch before starting the session or climb: Totally obvious, but it’s amazing how many climbers ignore this step. Warming up and stretching prepares your body for exercise with the resultant increase in circulation and flexibility allowing you to climb longer and more effectively.  The more flexible you are the easier a lot of moves become and the easier it is to create rest positions on otherwise pumpy territory. Warming up properly will keep the pump at bay and help avoid the cold ‘flash pump’ that is notoriously hard to get rid of effectively. Importantly warming up and stretching will also help prevent injury.

Performance Climbing Tip 2
Plan the Climb:. You can tell an awful lot about a route by studying it for a couple of minutes before putting on your shoes and tying onto the rope. Try to understand the route – where are the rests, where is the crux. It is particularly useful be able to identify the crux and then work backwards to determine the sequence of moves needed to complete it. The more you do this the better you will become at it.
Then once on the route use the rests to further study the route and try to plan the next few moves in particular.
Thinking ahead will give you a huge advantage on your on-sight attempts because it puts you in control; letting you move at an ideal pace to minimise the pump and helping to minimise the number of dead ends and nasty surprises.

Performance Climbing Tip 3
Racking: Rack your kit logically and consistently: It’s silly to waste strength looking for the right piece of gear on your harness – find a racking system that works for you and keep to it.

My trad rack keeps wires at the front. The wires are split onto between 4 to 6 biners by size and racked on alternative sides of the harness on the front racks; behind the wires are the mainstream cams (3 Aliens and DMM 4CUs 1.0 to 3.0) and behind the cams are the quickdraws. The QDs are arranged by length, short closest to the front and longest at the back. The safety kit (spare Screwgate and prusics) are on the rear loop along with any esoteric gear that might be needed i.e. cam 4.

This way the wires and cams are easily visible and easily found whilst the QDs can be found quickly by touch.

Performance Climbing Tip 4
Grip Strength:. The key concepts here are variety, relaxation and timing. Varying the type of grip that you use whenever possible will help save energy - alternate between crimps, open hands, pinches, cups and jams as often as the rock allows. Jams in particular are a great way of sneaking a quick rest.
In addition learn to relax your grip - over-gripping will make your forearms pump out so much faster. It is hard to avoid at first, but the tendency at critical crux points on the route is to unconsciously squeeze the hold a little tighter. This not only makes you get pumped faster, but also reduces the smoothness and fluidity of your climbing movement and performance. Your back and shoulders should remain loose and relaxed. Get into the habit of mentally checking your grip in crux situations -this will help you slow down, re-check the basics, and calm yourself so you can think through the solution to the problem ahead.
Also when in a pumpy situation try to limit your time on any given hold to avoid/minimise the pump getting established. Climb past the smallest, pumpiest holds as fast as possible.

Performance Climbing Tip 5.
De-pump: Recovering on a route should be a proactive process. Actively and vigorously open and close your fingers or flex your wrist between each hold – a flicking motion works best as this encourages blood flow through the forearm muscles. The cumulative effect of doing this between every grip will significantly reduce your accumulated pump.
Most climber adopt the dangling arm shakeout – letting their arms hang loosely and gently shaking their wrist, however this is not the best technique. A more effective method uses gravity to stimulate blood flow.
Vary the position of your resting arm between the normal dangling position and an above-your-head position i.e. gently flex your arm by your side for five seconds, but then raise it to a half-bent position above your shoulder and shake it gently for five seconds. Repeat this cycle as often as needed or for as long as you can hang out at the rest.
A forearm pump is largely the result of accumulated lactic acid and restricted blood flow - whilst the standard dangling arm shakeout allows good blood flow into the forearm it does not help the flow of  the old blood out of the forearm because of the arm’s position below your heart. This slows recovery, but the suggested technique uses gravity as an ally by aiding venous return of the blood to your heart. This enhances the removal of lactic acid and speeds recovery.




Performance Coaching - Prices


Type of Course
Length of Course
Instructor - Climber Ratio
Cost per group
Cost per person
Performance Climbing Coaching in Snowdonia
1 Day Course
2 Day Course
3 Day Course
4 Day Course


Booking Form

The full terms and conditions are on the booking page

Equipment provided by the Rock Climbing Company: This is a relatively advanced rock climbing course and ideally you should have your own shoes and harness - if you don't then you probably aren't at the right stage in your climbing for the course and won't get the most out of it - there will be too much to take in too soon.

We can certainly let you borrow a wide variety of hardware so that you can decide for yourself what you kit like. In addition we will provide all the technical equipment needed for this climbing course including ropes, hardware and a helmet.

What you need to provide: We tend to plan for rain, wind and gales and then hope for sun - so bring enough warm and waterproof clothing to stay comfortable outdoors. Hats and gloves always prove useful and are great temperature regulators.

You should also bring a rucksack of 40-50 litres plus plenty of food and drink for the day.

There is a comprehensive equipment list on the Equipment for Courses page.

What is not included. Prices do not include transport, accommodation or meals.

Ratios and course sizes. Performance Climbing is best taught at a ratio of between 1 and 3 clients to 1 instructor.

Dates, venues and duration of all of the climbing courses are by arrangement and totally customisable. Please do not hesitate to contact us for more information






About Us | Site Map | Privacy Policy | Contact Us | ©2008 Rock Climbing Company

Rock Climbing Courses | Mountain Scrambling Courses | Mountain Skills & Navigation Courses