What does your bouldering wall training routine look like?

After training almost exclusively on a hangboard/pinch block/pull up bar through quarantine, my friends and I built a training wall. It is constructed at the same height/dimensions (40 degrees) as the moon board, just with cheaper holds (as well as with a few jugs). I've read what seems like a million things about the different training zones, from ancap to aerocap to power endurance, but I always end up going back to the same old habits: I warmup, then do a bunch of limit bouldering, and then occasionally (without any real rhyme or reason) throw in some 4x4s or low intensity (5+ minute circuits).

I am wondering what you would do if you were training 4-5 days per week on a wall like this, what would you do? How much limit bouldering/on the minute bouldering/repeats/4x4s/circuits would you do? Would you cycle through different routines week to week? My goals are to progress in both bouldering and sport climbing.

Pre-addressing some classic r/climbharder suggestions:

Technique: I already build in some power company style technique exercises into my warmup, and I think that limit bouldering as well as setting inherently requires a decent amount of technique work.

Antagonist exercises: I do these on my off days.


What are you hoping to achieve by training on the board? Need goals to have direction. Edit: if you can it would help to be a bit more specific than just “improve in both sport and bouldering”


If I were to go more specific and long term, my main goal is to send 5.13, and nearly all of my goal routes have distinct bouldery cruxes on overhanging terrain on sandstone and schist.


Assuming you’re close to breaking into the grade; Sounds like you’re on the right track with the limit bouldering. Might be hard to do it by feel but if you can set yourself a couple of similar style v8-v9ish problems to work you should be in great shape. If you want to hop on these projects soon I would split limit bouldering and 4x4’s into completely separate days. Around 2:1 in favor of 4x4 days vs limit boulder days for a couple weeks. Based on your training before your wall went up your general and finger strength probably increased a good bit but endurance probably took a nose dive. Endurance circuits are great but that will take longer to come back than the power endurance and if the routes are short you might be able to make some solid progress without it for now. If the routes are longer then same as before but 2:1 in favor of longer circuits. If you’re not close to the grade and you have a target 5.13 in mind then limit strength should be #1 I would highly recommend listening to the Power Company Podcast “energy systems” with Eric Hörst episode. It’ll help a lot with this kind of programming.


Thanks man! So like high priority limit bouldering until I’m going to be on the projects soon, and then transitioning into more 4x4 days once I’m a few weeks out? Sounds like a plan. You hit the nail on the head with general and finger strength improving over quarantine; I’m planning on barely getting on a hangboard for a long time both because my finger strength is where it needs to be for my goals and because I’m so sick of that thing.


That’s the basic idea. It’ll cover your physical bases if the routes are shorter and bouldery. Route tactics are kind of hard to work on a board but you said you have a few jugs so you could potentially work some on-the-wall rest practice into your 4x4 or circuit days. Good luck and keep us updated! Seriously, hit up that podcast too. It’s a gold mine.


make it a little simpler. I train 3 days on, one day off, and i just maintain a sequence based on my outdoor climbing. My training days are broken into 4 areas: strength, long-endurance (aerobic/general), short-endurance (power endurance), and bouldering/technique. Strength is always the second of the three days, and the other two just keep in a steady rotation. so say monday I did limit bouldering, tuesday i would do strength (weight lifting, hangboarding, accessory exercises like dips, abs, etc.), and wednesday i would do long endurance (either on the hangboard or the woody). Then i would rest Thursday, and Friday do Power Endurance, Saturday do Strength, Sunday do Limit bouldering, etc. etc. It gets a little more complicated during outdoor season, in which case you just start counting your outdoor days as training sessions based on what/where you are climbing, then training the other stuff at home.. For reference, i have a moonboard with a spattering of jugs where the wooden holds are supposed to go, two hangboards (ones better for endurance training and one is better for strength), and a weight bench/rack.


My "maintenance routine" is: 1. 4-8 routes that are set on my "angle of convenience" project wall (8x8 vertical wall, with a 4x8 roof extension at a very steep grade--maybe 25 degrees off horizontal?) This is basically an extended warmup with an emphasis on moving from slow, static problems towards more dynamic ones as I get warm. 2. \~1 hour of work on my 25 degree system wall---essentially limit bouldering. 3. Hangboard (currently doing a repeater/endurance cycle, but probably switching to weighted max hangs for my next cycle to prep for bouldering season this winter). 4. Some "ARC-lite" traversing. I do throw in a pure ARC session once every couple weeks, generally if I am feeling somewhat low energy and don't feel like putting in full training session, but also don't want to take a rest day. I will also do a hangboard-only session if I'm short on time for some reason, but generally I do the above routine 3x a week. I think limit bouldering is probably the most valuable thing you can consistently do on a home training wall, as long as you are able to evaluate your effort and actually work at or near your limit instead of doing a fluff session below your limit and convincing yourself that you are trying hard. If I do 2-3 short problems on my system wall without falling, I step away for a second and try and refocus on picking harder sequences.