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Ninja Climbing Assessment

So now that we have covered some Basics & some of the MANY Exercises possible to do, we need to determine a plan. The options are endless, so I like to first determine a level of skill in each category in order to find some weaknesses and have a baseline. Without a SUPER AMAZING NINJA WARRIOR GYM like CHAOS it can be tough to test, so let’s instead start with some assumptions.


Are you a professional rock climber? No, then your Finger Grip Strength is weak. Sorry to call you weak, but it is not a skill us normal folks have. It can only be earned thru years of hard training and most people don’t hang from their fingers.


Are you an experienced free weight lifter? If so, then you Whole Hand Grip Strength is most likely decent. If not we can fix that, this one isn’t too hard with Ninja Training.


Grip Strength Endurance comes with lots of time, so once again if you aren’t a professional rock climber than we will assume you need this. BUT we will not work on this until more time has been put in because this can cause overuse injuries easily in the form of elbow tendinitis, should pain, bicep strains, and more.


Pulling strength is best gauged by the ability to do explosive pull ups, 1-arm pull ups, and slow lock off climbing maneuvers. These are fairly normal strength moves, so a lot of athletes will already be capable. Someone might argue that they have seen someone do Salmon Ladder without being able to do 5 strict pull ups. This is true, technique can overcome strength, but I will argue that this person is never going to be consistent on the Salmon Ladder and by the time they reach it in the competition they have a high percentage chance of falling. So if you can’t knock out pull ups easily we need to work on this. If you can, then most of the pulling strength will come from training.

Support Strength is what we use to balance the body out. Typically people neglect some part of their body and cause their own injuries. Or, like myself, are gifted with a rigid body that gets injuries because basic mobility seems impossible. It really gets old having to spend a LOT of time just attempting to get my limbs to move in “normal” range of motion. But I digress. Amazing individuals like Ido Portal(one of my favorite, check him out), Erwin Le Corre, and more have created entire training systems with the primary goal of getting our bodies to move is full range of motion and developing strength through out that range. Both of these systems are great and I have read and watched a lot of their philosophies. Along the same lines is Kelly Starett and his work to improve movement and strength with his clients. A crossfit practitioner who has a great book, Supple Leopard, and does seminars to help fix peoples dysfunctions. All of these people are more intelligent than I am and I believe in their systems, so now I will use what I have learned from them to help you. We cannot limit our movement to just the climbing, jumping, and balance work without expecting injuries to occur. By taking time to build stability in other directions and movements we will improve our ability to train and compete without as many injuries or setbacks.


That covers a little more of the Climbing side of our training to come. The Support Strength side will encompass all aspects of training that are not just climbing, but I went ahead and slipped it into this category. Next I will cover the Balance & Jumping sections.

Thanks for checking out my article and please leave a comment to let me know what you think.


Russ Babcock

(816) 349-9205

Raymore Mo

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