A few weeks ago you may have noticed (or not if you stay away from social media!) on our instagram story I asked you all to tell me the things that irk you the most as climbers. Being brits (most of us), we’re all partial to a good moan, so let’s get stuck into a good cry about things that annoy us. Before I begin I would like to state this – My intentions are purely light hearted. This blog is in no way a serious, long winded, passive aggressive dig at those who indulge in these behaviors or complain about them! So without further ado here are 5 things that grind your gears climbing wise…

  1. Beta sprayers

Let’s start with a biggie. Beta sprayers: Aka – those folk who just splurge out beta without thinking twice as to whether you want it or not. Beta sprayers are the climbing equivalent of “Tip guy” from the gym. Admittedly, they’re not quite as annoying as Tip Guy – Tip Guy usually operates out of a Pure Gym type setting thus automatically making him at least doubly irritating. Nonetheless, the world could benefit from less of them. 

There’s 2 different kinds of beta sprayers though, the ones who are aware they’re “spraying beta” and want everyone to know their brain figured out the route, and the ones who are blissfully unaware that their wisdom is unwanted. I’d like to think most people are the latter, that it’s meant with good intention, but we all know there’s a tiny majority who act like the former.

So, to the unaware beta sprayers – we know you mean well, but just try and keep the old yapper from opening a little more. To the aware – Just stop it. Let’s stop feeding that hungry ego! You figured out the puzzle of 1 particular problem, well done! Now pipe down before the thirst for external validation becomes too overwhelming to shut down.

  1. Climbers with no top on

Sorry fellas but this is one purely aimed at you lot! Personally, I’ve not got a problem with it so long as the intention is based soley on thermoregulation however, when it’s clearly a bravado thing – Cringe. I get it though, sometimes you just feel more comfortable especially when ROC turns into a bit of a sauna! However, like those beta sprayers that shout their mouths off just to show everyone how smart they are, strutting around with no top because you want to turn heads – pack it in. I’m not saying don’t ever do it, just be aware of how you present your energy if you are going to. Use nuance, ask yourself is this necessary!

I think the one thing we can ALL agree on though is if you must discard your garment, make sure you smell pleasant and for the love of god don’t drip sweat everywhere or clumsily brush past anyone when walking around. Do we have a deal lads?

  1. Hard moves

Hard moves when you just can’t do them are super annoying, but hard moves that you can do – super fulfilling! I’ll take it we mean the former though, so I’ll roll with that.

The truth is though, hard moves we can’t make only annoy us because we choose to let them do so (which is similar to most of the other things in this list tbh). We can choose to let them get to us or we can choose to learn from them and use them to guide our improvement. If hard moves didn’t exist we’d never truly appreciate the efforts we make to nail them. Imagine how much less passion we’d have for climbing if everything was easy? The whole shabang would become pretty boring, pretty quickly. Hard moves make the sport what it is. Embrace them and learn to love them. Leave them poor old hard moves alone!

  1. Slab grinding

Unlike hard moves, there really is no way you can embrace this one and learn to enjoy it. Not unless you get off on ripping skin clean off your face, which I can’t imagine is anyone! Slab grinding is without doubt a true foe of the climber. Once you slip on a slab, you’re at the mercy of the climbing gods as to how much of a mess your skin is going to be upon landing. However it’s kind of a right of passage. There isn’t an experienced climber out there who hasn’t (at one time or another) scrapped a good chunk of flesh off on a slab. There’s an element of “you haven’t found your limit until you’ve slab grinded a few times,” right? And that’s what so many of us love about the sport right? – Finding our limits and pushing them? Nevertheless, slab gridining is rage inducing regardless of experience. It’s never going to be pleasant, it’s simply an occupational hazard. It’s a symbol of us pushing our abilities. It sucks and there’s no way around it unless your a slab wizard/very lucky. Up yours slabs!

  1. People not brushing holds

Let’s not kid ourselves, we’re all guilty of this from time to time. We climb, we send, we celebrate, we bugger off. Chalk is strewn all over the holds but we’re too wrapped up in our own glory to go back and give them a good brush. Not so bad when it’s a fresh route, a little chalk left behind isn’t that big of deal, but if we kick the can down the road enough times, it becomes a real issue. When you have to spend a solid 5mins getting rid of an absolute mountain of chalk just so you can stand a chance of successfully sending, our rage levels rise up exponentially. If you’re using a popular route and have been projecting it for a while, brush that bad boy down so the next person doesn’t feel like they’re quarrying chalk rather than brushing it off!

Peace out

Coach Will