Andrea actually suggested that the pair of you run a ‘Mind tricks and levitation: advanced techniques with Lee Cossey and Andrea Hah’, while we said no to this because we think levitation is cheating, we were curious about some of the techniques involved?
That course was going to cover several topics around psychokinesis as well as transcending gravity and the self. But it looks like we’ll have to keep those techniques to ourselves.
Can a climber think themselves stronger?
In what way could injuries be seen to provide opportunities?
We can see most climbing injuries that result from going too hard on too little tissue tolerance as existing on a spectrum. At one end of the spectrum we hurt and can’t do as much climbing as we’d like and at the other end we are performing well and and are at our strongest. Being injured is one of the clearest insights you’ll get into understanding your weaknesses and preferences. It is also an opportunity to play your own game as you get to take a step back and reassess what is important and where you want to go. I have seen so many people for whom their most severe injuries were their biggest positive turning points after which they progressed to a level they’d not previously achieved.
Is getting injured just a part of climbing?
To some extent it probably is just as it is in day to day life. But it doesn’t mean we can’t do a lot to minimise the likelihood and severity of them.
How does a person know when they should ride an injury out and when they need to seek the help of a professional?
As soon as someone is modifying their behaviour due to pain or even just fear of injury it’s probably a good time to get some external input. It may be one consult for some reassurance that they can happily ride it out or it may involve some more in depth intervention, typically involving specific loading to either make the area stronger or more skillful.
Where do you stand on the Getting Better vs Getting Stronger dichotomy?
To me getting better is about the application of all the tools: physical capacity, skill repertoire, mental capacity etc. It is about overall performance and can be measured with grade climbed, the style in which a route or boulder is completed, not dying or how much fun you have etc. Getting stronger just happens to be the more obsessed over single factors that are relevant to getting better.
‘Rest’ is held up as an important part of training, but what does it really mean?
Most people could afford to train harder and rest more. But rest doesn’t have to mean kicking back on the couch playing the Atari. The concepts of active rest and non-linear periodisation should be terms that are becoming more and more familiar to people. They refer alternating the way in which you stress your body within your shortest repeating cycle (i.e typically a week). Not every session needs to tax the same body part or energy system. For example we may train six out of seven days doing a mix of session types and be better rested than the person who trains only three days but repeats the same heavy session each of those days.
‘Mobility’ is another hot topic at the minute – how would you explain it?
Mobility, in a climbing performance sense, may be a term that is somewhat interchangeable with flexibility. It’s about having the freedom of movement at individual and groups of joints to be able to; open your hips and stay close to the wall, twist your chest in the direction you’re reaching while maintaining an efficient tight back step or rotate your shoulder in an overhead position so as to distribute force over greater distance and time. It’s something that may be trained with good old fashioned stretching, dynamic ‘mobility’ drills, strengthening at the required position or even cheated for a brief moment with techniques like massage, manipulation or acupuncture/dry needling.
You’re both more famous now as ninja warriors than climbers due to Australian Ninja Warrior, is there any transfer of ninja skills to climbing or is it all one way?
The most transferable skill is that of deflecting lame or off topic questions in written interviews.
Do you have an tips for boulderers going into the competition on the Saturday of the Festival?
Pour your heart into every moment you have on the rock.
As you know (because we keep bringing it up), we’ve been big fans of your hair ever since you appeared on the cover of an old issue of Rock magazine with the most amazing hair that’s probably ever been seen at the crag. Will there be any hair care tips in the clinics for those who want to look their best in social media posts?
We’re all about the organic do! Let it do what it’ll do, focus on your bloody climbing and f&%# social media! :)