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Climbers Don’t Need the Olympics

A big thank you to all who submitted designs to our 09.09.09 Anniversary Shirt Design Contest, in celebration of our upcoming 7th anniversary of Brooklyn Boulders.
We had many great submissions and are pleased to present our two winners. First up is Kristy Kay, a designer and illustrator from Los Angeles. Her background is in animation, and she hasdone work for a variety of companies including Sony Pictures Animation, Nickelodeon, and Touchstone Climbing Gyms. Kristy has been climbing for about six months now and is newly addicted.
“I wanted to capture the energy that I experience when climbing in a gym. I wanted to create an image that reflected the fun and freedom that draws so many people to this amazing sport!” Rock climbing and bouldering pictures and news 09.09.09 Shirts Winners!09.09.09 shirt by Kristy Kay, which will be available at our Somerville, Queensbridge and Brooklyn locations on September 9th. Rock climbing and bouldering pictures and news Rock climbing and bouldering pictures and news ?Life is short, climb hard? . ? Great shot by @melody_goudarzi . ? Follow us for daily inspiration! . . . @climbingvibe #climbinglife #climberlife #climbinglovers #climbingisbliss #leadclimbing #climbingtrees #bouldern #climbinggirl Rock climbing and bouldering pictures and news Rock climbing and bouldering pictures and news ???? Enjoy the Camping Season! Let my friends at @theoutdoorsarchive_free help! CLICK THE LINK ON THE PROFILE AND GET SOME Complimentary WATCHES ⌚! ???? #arenalvolcano #nationalparks #backpackingpr #camperlifestyle Rock climbing and bouldering pictures and news Rock climbing and bouldering pictures and news ? High N' Low Family! ? Take a look at our brand spankin' new website and let us know what you think by heading to the link in our bio! Rock climbing and bouldering pictures and news Rock climbing and bouldering pictures and news ?#via: @austin_siadak thanks to the photographer * Yeaterday @whitneyclark6 was really lichen the sinker jams, techy stems, amazing position and beautiful colors on The West Face of Colchuck Balanced Rock. Here she is only halfway(!) up Pitch 5, one Rock climbing and bouldering pictures and news Rock climbing and bouldering pictures and news ? : @valentina_predieri Contemplando Le Tofane!!! #ferrata #ferratanuvolau2574m #dolomiti #mountains #mountain_world #cortina #cortinadampezzo #passogiau #landscape_lover #photography #wildgirl #outdoors #adventure #kaikkialla #neverstopexploring Rock climbing and bouldering pictures and news Rock climbing and bouldering pictures and news ? Facciamo finta di allenarci... ? ? #sportlerclimbingcenter #bouldering #boulder #climbing #passion #climbinggirls #climbing_lovers #indoorclimbing #climbinggym ? Rock climbing and bouldering pictures and news Rock climbing and bouldering pictures and news ? ? ? ? The oppressed are allowed once every few years to decide which particular representatives of the oppressing class are to represent and repress them. (Quote by - Karl Marx) #paddlesurf #backpacking #mountrainier #fishingtackle Rock climbing and bouldering pictures and news Rock climbing and bouldering pictures and news ? Rock #climbing course on the crags in and around Finale Ligure, a world-renowned destination for all the sport climbing lovers ? 1-3 nov 2018 ? . . . . ▶️Link in Bio #beoutsider #bevertical #outdooraddiction #verticalife #climb #rockclimbinTag your friends ? Rock climbing and bouldering pictures and news Rock climbing and bouldering pictures and news ?‍♀️?‍♀️?‍♀️ 思った以上に怖くて登れなくて悔しかったけど なんとか10mくらいの壁を登りきった?✌? 飛び降りる時の感覚が楽しくて忘れられない〜 #bouldering #hardrock Rock climbing and bouldering pictures and news Rock climbing and bouldering pictures and news Rock climbing and bouldering pictures and news Rock climbing and bouldering pictures and news ????There goes Juantorena down the back straight, opening his legs and showing his class. (Quote by - David Coleman)????#saguaro #nationalparkservice #caravanning #camp #camps #camperlifestyle #climbingphotography #climbingrocks Rock climbing and bouldering pictures and news Rock climbing and bouldering pictures and news ? ?: ❤️??? ? ? from ? ? Follow us - .insta.lover ✅ Turn Post Notification on ? ✅ Follow, like and comment ✏ ✅ Tag your friends ? Created and don't get forget follow : ? @climbing.insta.lover ?Thank you ve <img src="" alt=" Rock climbing and bouldering pictures and news Rock climbing and bouldering pictures and news ? Tag your friends ? Rock climbing and bouldering pictures and news Rock climbing and bouldering pictures and news ??? . . . #clipnclimbchelsea #clipnclimb #friends #bestfriends #dayout #nightout #fun #climbing #indoorclimbing #weekend #weekendvibes #saturdaynight #busyweekend #soldout #booknow #stayfit #fitness #excercise #climb #girlswhoclimb Rock climbing and bouldering pictures and news Rock climbing and bouldering pictures and news ? Credit: @thenorthface_climb Thank you !!! * Time flies. Photo by @theverticaleye of @jacopolarcher * Please follow me ?? : @climbing_mylife_zz * Visit our shop to buy ? T-SHIRTS, Hoodies, Legging, Mugs... Updating... ➡ Click the link in Rock climbing and bouldering pictures and news Rock climbing and bouldering pictures and news ?Vertical'Art avec @tinmardfrs @givemeasoul @deriddermathieu ? : @givemeasoul #climb #climbing_is_my_passion #climbing_photos_of_instagram #girlswhoclimb #escalade #fitnessgirl #fitness #climbing #boulder #boulderingpassion #bouldering #verticalart
Check out Kristy’s website hereand follow her on Instagram at@kristysketch.
Our second winner is Christine McCabe, who is the senior illustrator at Encyclopædia Britannica.
She has alsobeen creating an anatomy book for yogisin her spare time, which will be out in about a year. Here’s the winning design for Chicago: Rock climbing and bouldering pictures and news 09.09.09 Shirts Winners!Winning design by Christine McCabe, which will be available at BKB Chicago!
I saw the teeshirt contest and the 09 09 09 just popped out at me….I saw a carabiner!
I did a rough sketch and then read the contest more thoroughly and saw it needed to relate to my Chicago community.It almost designed itself!
A big thank you again to everyone who submitted designs – stay tuned to see these shirts for sale on 09.09.16 at your local BKB, in celebration of our seventh anniversary! Rock climbing and bouldering pictures and news Jan Hojer
The inevitable news that climbing is getting its long-awaited turn in the spotlight of the reality show that is the Olympics has finally come to pass, and I, for one, could not be more indifferent. As the meme-generating pundit behind the “Rawk Tawk” Instagram account sarcastically put it, this time to a picture of Bill Murray’s phlegmatic countenance, “So excited climbing is in the Olympics. Now we can watch climbers who can’t smoke weed tell the world speed climbing is cool.”

A photo posted by @rawk_tawk on Aug 4, 2016 at 12:24pm PDT

Weed is cool (at least in Colorado) and speed-climbing is definitely not—but those are hardly the two best reasons to get excited or bummed about the news that climbing is going to shine, shine, SHINE! for those 20 minutes of non-prime-time coverage that NBC allots to it during the 2020 Tokyo Games.
Upon deeper introspection, I’ve realized that my underwhelming apathy toward the situation stems from a place of internal conflict over not really knowing how to feel.
On the one hand, competition climbing is now a full-fledged discipline within our sport. Even if you’re an old bearded alpinist picking out the crud between what’s left of your amputated toes, you’re still a part of the same tribe as the Sasha DiGiulians of the world. So let’s all get on board and celebrate our diminutive, featherweight brothers and sisters on the comp circuit for getting the opportunity to be in the limelight.
I truly believe that it would be self-defeating, if not downright cruel, to root against our nomadic lifestyle sport expanding and growing to become, in part, a standardized Olympic sport. So what if that means that there will be more helicopter parents forcing pre-school campus training and whey protein supplements down their kids’ little fucking throats? All the common fears I hear about how climbing’s artistic soul will be trampled by the Olympics juggernaut seem unfounded. Climbing being in the Olympics won’t prevent you from going out every weekend as per usual, and having profoundly spiritual personal journeys unclusterfucking your anchor on that 5.9 multi-pitch, so don’t worry about that.
Besides, it’s the Olympics! Gold medals and Wheaties boxes galore! Here we come!
On the other hand, what, if anything, do climbers really stand to gain by seeing their sport become an Olympic sport?
That’s a ground-zero question that seems to have been wholly glossed over as everyone celebrates the news.
It’s the Olympics! Of course we can gain from it!the reaction goes …
After all, climbing in the Olympics has been the apotheosis to the work of many smart, determined folks, whose overt decades-long mission has been to “grow the sport,” a catch phrase that I’ve been hearing about for the last 15 years, at least.
But we all know that “growing the sport” is really just industry-insider code for: We’re finally gonna get rich and/or famous! And part of me thinks that at least 50 percent of the celebration that climbing is in the Olympics stems from this unspoken sentiment that insiders are going to get more rich and famous because of it.
I have nothing against a little bit of that mentality, per se. … But I also don’t believe that the Olympics are going to be the marketing salvation that I already see many companies wringing their hands over. Even worse, the Olympics won’t be a vehicle for driving forward performance standards in our sport.
Sorry to be the bearer of bad news, everyone, but the Olympics probably aren’t going to change anything about climbing. In fact, we only stand to lose by participating in them, and here are a few reasons why.

The Olympics Needs Us More than We Need Them

Viewership for the Rio Games is already down well over 20 percent from 2012. Part of that huge drop can be attributed to the fact that many millennials are “cutting the cord,” meaning they’re no longer willfully subjecting themselves to the uncomfortable ramrodding that is soliciting Comcast for its cable-television services. But part of it is also that no one really cares about sports that they only ever hear about or think about once every four years.
The main reason the International Olympic Committee has offered to include climbing—along with fellow lifestyle/soul sports surfing and skateboarding—in its platform has to do with the fact that the IOC sees these sports as a way to bring millennials back into the fold. In turn, they can now approach global obesity-inducing sponsors like Coke and McDonald’s and show them that they’ve got that young demo(graphic) back in their pockets.
“We want to take sport to the youth. With the many options that young people have, we cannot expect any more that they will come automatically to us,” IOC president Thomas Bach said.
I have to wonder, then, why climbers are being forced to participate in such a horrible format? I’m referring, of course, to the fact that climbing is only going to get one medal, for a combined score in three entirely disparate disciplines: bouldering, lead, and speed. I don’t even need to explain why this format sucks, but just imagine the outrage among runners if they were forced to compete for one medal by combining their scores in the 50-meter sprint, the 800, and the mile. At that point, you may as well add in bowling as the tiebreaker.
The first rule of negotiation is that the party most willing to walk away from the deal wins. I think that the climbing community is right to be upset at the International Federation of Sport Climbing (IFSC) for securing such a craptastic deal with the IOC. The IFSC was so dazzled by the prospect of Olympic gold that it sold out the sport and did a major disservice to the athletes by agreeing to an unprecedented format that most climbers hate.
The IFSC didn’t realize how badly the IOC needed us, and how little we needed them—which is why one of the greatest climbers of our lifetime, Adam Ondra, is seriously considering boycotting the event. Good. He should.

The Coverage Will Be Embarrassingly Bad

You only have to look at what a fucking crappy job NBC does of parlaying to mainstream America the nuance, technique, preparation, and insane difficulty that goes into every one of the world-class achievements that takes place during the Olympics to imagine what a fucking even crappier job they’re going to do explaining what a crimper or a V12 is, or how a 5.14d is also a 9a, or why the knee-bar beta doesn’t automatically result in a 10th of a point deduction (side note: why doesn’t it?), or how none of these people have any aspiration of ever climbing Everest.
Women’s gymnastics—by many measures, the most popular Olympic sport—is consistently diminished by NBC’s coverage to a reality show in which spritely young women in glittery outfits overcome these contrived emotional storylines whipped up by television producers. Then, without any real discussion about what is happening, why it’s difficult, and why it matters, these rendered beauty-pageant queens with muscles take the stage and do a bunch of pretty dancing, flipping, and kicky things to the approval of their staunch white middle-aged male coaches, who take at least 50 percent of the credit.
And this is the most popular event!
Ninety-nine percent of the country doesn’t know the names of any gymnastics maneuvers, or why they’re even difficult. There’s virtually no profound acknowledgment of the fact that these gymnasts are athletically more impressive than any Crossfitter by miles, and that they are doing far more dangerous things than any mixed martial artist, or that they’re only able to survive these maneuvers because their skill levels are so high due to the fact that they’ve been training their entire lives (literally).
As the NBC chief marketing officer for the Olympics, John Miller, revealed, viewers are “less interested in the result and more interested in the journey. It’s sort of like the ultimate reality show and miniseries wrapped into one.”
In other words, the Olympics coverage has nothing to do with conveying the nuanced story of what makes a sport unique and difficult, or celebrating what makes these athletes fantastic and incredible. Instead, it’s all about producing a reality TV show.
If climbers believe that the Olympics are going to best showcase what makes our sport so incredible, prepare to be disappointed.

No One Will Get Rich or Famous from the Olympics

Upon hearing the news of the Olympics’ inclusion of these new sports, badass pro skier Cody Townsend tweeted, “Congrats surfing, skating and climbing, you’re in the Olympics! [sidenote: nothing good will happen to your sport because of it.]”
Curious, I reached out to Townsend to explain what he meant by that. He told me that the root of his warning stems from the fallout he witnessed in the ski industry when ski slopestyle and halfpipe events were integrated into the Winter Olympics platform in Sochi in 2014.
“Naturally, a lot of freeskiing stars and companies within freeskiing were incredibly excited by the potential of the Olympics,” he explained. “The stars dreamed of fame and fortune, the companies of awareness and profit. But for the most part neither came. Despite a lot of warranted caution voiced from within, I witnessed companies divert massive chunks of their marketing budgets towards their Olympic athletes and marketing initiatives. Since 2014, the market research has shown zero attributable bump because of these initiatives. Skier days haven’t spiked up, products aren’t being sold any faster and, hell, a few of those top-tier athletes lost their top-tier sponsors within a couple of years of competing on the world’s biggest stage.”
He went on …
“In fact, Snow Industry Association accounts that nearly 75 percent of market behavior is dictated by weather, which makes it seem like investing in climate-change initiatives will be far more profitable than Olympic initiatives. … I mean, Valley Uprising probably did more for climbing than the Olympics would ever do. Hell, my mom, who’s never climbed a day in her life, watched Valley Uprising and was suddenly enthralled by the entire sport. I don’t think a few nationally uniformed spidermen/women on colored plastic will inspire nearly the drama and attention that a great film can.”
His advice:
“All in all, I’d just say the athletes and companies within climbing should have fun, enjoy the Olympics, enjoy the stage, but do not invest a single extra cent or kilojoule of effort and expect a return from it.”

We’ve Already Landed a Wheaties Box

To springboard off of Townsend, I worry that the climbing industry and climbers themselves will become so transfixed by the gold medal that we will abandon our core values. Based on what’s already happened, and what I foresee continuing to happen over the next four years leading up to Tokyo, I worry that, in our haste to “make the sport grow,” we’ll lose sight of what actually makes climbing great.
We don’t need to reduce our athletes to playing the part of uniformed monkeys swinging around on plastic holds. We don’t need to turn our sport into a reality show or a popularity contest to make it interesting. And we don’t need the validation that climbing is the greatest sport on earth because we already know that.
In other words, we don’t need the Olympics.
Jerry Moffatt once said that he’d trade any one of his comp victories for a first ascent. I hope that, over the next four years, Ashima Shiraishi doesn’t spend too much time training for speed climbing. In fact, I hope she doesn’t spend any time training for speed climbing. I hope she goes out into nature, uses her creativity, vision, skill, and talent to put the world’s first 5.16.
It’s worth noting that Tommy Caldwell has already appeared on a Wheaties Box, and not for winning an Olympic Gold. How did he get there? For establishing one of the hardest, most visionary big-wall first ascents of our lifetime.
Let’s focus on growing the sport this way instead.
For more info on the Beach Brawl (B2), visit:
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Once a month, we’ll pick a few problems of a recent reset at one of our gyms and give you some beta to try out. While there are multiple ways to crush a problem, if these are giving you a hard time, try this beta on for size.
In this episode, we are featuring the Peace Dale, RI gym’s reset on their Hueco Wall.
Organic and Five Ten athlete, Lucy Humphreys stops by to show her beta on a smooth V4 set by our Director of Wall Design and Head Route Setter, Mike Dominguez, “MIG.” Danny sends a V5 set by Curran McMahon, “CM,” and Troy DeSimone sends a V7 set by Danny Howard, “DH.”
If there are any other problems you’d like to see beta for, please let us know in the comments below and we will try our best to get you beta before the next reset posted to your local gym Facebook page.
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For general info or for contact info, visit: Rock climbing and bouldering pictures and news Going With the Flow

Dave Meyer on a new route at a new cliff in Redstone, CO.

I’ve been really digging this summer. Maybe because winter was so long this year, every warm day feels like such a gift. I love the simplicity of going out with nothing but shorts and a t-shirt, and maybe a light rain jacket in the pack. The ease of access into the mountains is wonderful, you can go wherever your feet will take you.
After last year’s season was spent climbing and researching a bunch of new crags, trying to get on as many routes as possible (and not focusing on sending), I was hoping to go back and try to wrap up some things I got a taste of. As so often happens, though, life had other plans.
In April, I was starting up a finger crack in the desert and a foothold blew, shock loading my right shoulder, leaving me with a strain of the sub-scap and labrum. Could have been worse, but it also wasn’t something that was going to resolve quickly, and “sending” wasn’t in the cards any time soon.
So I decided some good rehab would be developing some new cliffs. I got a new drill (thanks to everyone who has bought a guidebook, putting that money right back into the local climbing!) a bunch of bolts, and have been picking off some low hanging fruit in the area. It still amazes me there are cliffs waiting to be climbed that sit less than 20 minutes from the road.
I miss being in Rifle, and seeing all the friends there, but the new climbing is fun, and closer to home, and these kinds of things work best when you just put your head down and focus and make it happen. Plus we need to have some new areas to add to the next edition when that time comes!
So for now, you won’t see me out at the other spots very often, though my shoulder is doing better. I hope everyone is enjoying summer and all the new climbing. And don’t worry, there is more on the way!
Of course! :) Now that climbing is in The Olympics I have to try and make the team! :) Rock climbing and bouldering pictures and news Insight into the Slacklife image -1
I started slacklining in college, Boston—little did I know that an excuse for skipping class would soon become my obsession, my passion, my catalyst for travel, my … my little wiggly rope thing. The slackline.
Patience, perseverance, timing, in the moment-ness, all things can be realized…
I dropped out of college early to pursue travel out west and rock climbing. But when I moved to Moab, a veritable mecca for the sport of highlining, my relationship with the one-inch nylon became much richer and exploratory. I was surrounded by some truly talented individuals. I watched them float gently over giant canyons, inspired to stand myself one day upon these thin strands of courage suspended high in the sky, above my doubts and anxieties. Rock climbing and bouldering pictures and news Insight into the Slacklife: Highlining with Matt
With constant practice, and I mean constant, I slowly developed my sense of balance in this strange world far above the ground, which I could not float above before. To feel one’s breath and steps, movement through the universe—suspended in space, airy emptiness all around, one with the webbing, its movements stretching with one’s mind, breath and body—this is thehighline. Before I knew it, this feeling had captured my attention in a very profound way. Rock climbing and bouldering pictures and news Insight into the Slacklife image -3
After many, many, many, many attempts, you may be able to walk a highline. It’s hard to say what is so different about doing it with a leash, but it is quite different and there are many things to be learned from this practice.Patience, perseverance, timing, in the moment-ness, all things can be realized in a fleeting dream of a moment as one’s spirit passes through realms of understanding by means of rhythmic movement across a slackline high above the ground. This is just one reason why I love highlining and slacklining: there is an obvious connection between the “slacklife” and living a life in a philosophical way.

Related:Highlining the Vajolet Towers in the Dolomites Rock climbing and bouldering pictures and news matt_dunkelberger_slackline_10 (1) Rock climbing and bouldering pictures and news matt_dunkelberger_slackline_6 Rock climbing and bouldering pictures and news matt_dunkelberger_slackline Rock climbing and bouldering pictures and news matt_dunkelberger_slackline_2
This article was originally published on June 23, 2014.

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Projecting is a word that either excites or terrifies us as climbers. Completing a hard earned project can provide an incredibly pure sense of satisfaction – we struggle, we fight, we persevere, and we overcome an obstacle. Yet fear of the process, and of the possibility of a negative outcome, often deters our efforts. Rock climbing and bouldering pictures and news sierrablaircoyle: Have any questions for me? Ask away at...
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