Giant disappointment at the climbing gym

If you’ve been following my story with regards to bouldering, you know that in December, I gained the skill necessary to complete a route and competed in my first competition, and in January, I participated in my second competition.

Both of these were driven by desire to climb in this year’s big competition in April. As I wrote before:

It was a bouldering event (short walls, no ropes) which is not something that I had done at all, but there were all sorts of fun, silly climbing (taller walls, with a rope) stations as well—one-handed, an obstacle course, a route made of old (looking) metal things, a “balance the ball on the spoon” route.

I decided that I would learn to boulder so that I could participate next year.

So…they changed it up a bit and are having a series of mini-competitions—all bouldering—and if you enter three of those (no charge for members), you can automatically enter into the Big Event in April.

So far, not much information has been posted about the finals, but I noticed a new poster on the wall. Upon inspection, it was just the design for the T-shirt.

I asked at the desk.

What I learned: it’s not like last year’s competition. It’s just bouldering.

I’m not especially enjoying bouldering—it’s at the edge of my skill level which makes it extremely challenging. That in itself is OK—very exciting when I can complete something new!—but not every time I go to the gym. Partially because I’m not always looking to work that hard (or in that capacity), partially because usually when I want to work that hard, it’s on a climbing route, and partially because I have a very limited amount of time on the wall before my hands and forearms are done.

When I talked to the guy in charge of the whole thing a while back (more than once), he talked about how fun it was going to be, and how everyone gets a prize (there’s a raffle and all participants have a ticket in it, with enough swag for everyone to get something). And that’s all fine, but my motivation was the fun stuff.

There’s no fun stuff.

That, combined with the sheer volume of emotional energy it takes to show up for a competition at something I’m terrible at—and have people watching but not helping—leads me to decide The Struggle Bus is not for me this time around.

As I become a stronger human being and a stronger climber, I might return to bouldering and try again another year, but for this year, I’m done.

0 thoughts on “Giant disappointment at the climbing gym”

  1. It sucks that they changed the rules, not just once, but several times. If bouldering is something you want to pursue further, are there exercises outside of rock climbing time (I know you have so much free time, right 🙂 ) that could build your forearm and hand strength? Perhaps that would help with your bouldering stamina to allow you to work on it longer in one stretch.

    • Yes, there are. I’m on it already, but between climbing and lifting, I’m wearing them out regularly already. But when they’re not wiped AND I’m not going to climb or lift… *sigh*

      Having more grip strength and stamina will also help many things, not just bouldering.


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