Andrew Bisharat shares several good tips he gleaned from a session with climbing coach Justen Sjong including this tidbit that really struck home for me personally:
Because I want to be a “good” climber and I want others to perceive me as such, it seems as though I am often trying too hard to look solid and in control. I hold my breathe, even, to not give that audible clue that I’m actually trying hard. I try to be controlled and static on moves. And above all, my biggest weakness, as Justen pointed out, was that I have trouble giving 100 percent most of the time. It takes a lot for me to put myself out that far.
In other words, if I try my hardest and fail, then everyone will know just how weak I am.
The reason for this mentality differs from person to person, but I think there is something to this that affects many of us. I know that the idea that other people are usually watching and my innate desire to not look like a punter in front of them has had a real impact on my development as a climber. Throw in the fact that I’m now super famous because of this website1 and it’s any wonder I climb with people around at all any more2.
Anyway, read the article and try to learn a few ways to make yourself a better climber in 2012.