Comparison of top female climbers. 2015 overall world cup winner Akiyo Noguchi, World and European champion Juliane Wurm, Alex Puccio, american youngsters Margo Hayes and Megan Mascarenas, Miho Nonaka, Moni Retschy, Shauna Coxsey and of course the fantastic Anna Stöhr showing their skills in Innsbruck, Toronto and Vail 2015.
My job as head coach of the German Alpine club's Bouldering team has many faces. It includes to facilitate thinking or learning new behaviour and improve physical skills for personal growth and advancement in the demands of bouldering contests. Another aspect is to transfer as much of my knowledge and experience to my climbers. I’m involved in all the aspects of the sport, including physical and mental development and the application of tactics and strategies during the contests. Competitive bouldering is relatively young so common sense on training program design and injury prevention is not yet established. Climbing is mostly a self-taught activity up to a certain age so that some athletes are not used to being coached. We than have to establish a practise of feedback and critique. The athlete perceives a contest from a first person perspective, feeling a slippery hold or fading strength first hand - whereas I have an outside overview - observing body language, comparing the competitors’ different solutions and keeping the judging in check. To bring these two perceptions to match and to keep the communication running so that we both benefit from our different perspectives is the biggest challenge for any coach.
Often I just ask questions and offer opportunities that will challenge my athletes to find answers from within him- or herself.
The four German Bouldering Team trainings, 2009-2014 videos show some of the methods we tried out and experimented with over the last five years.
--- Martin Joisten, internationaler Kampfrichter, nach dem Wettbewerb auf seiner seite climbing.de (Martin wußte zu dieser Zeit schon dass man Spuren von Cannabis bei Chris gefunden hatte!)