The Lead Test →

Should I practice falling?


Yes.

Even if your gym has a policy of not taking lead falls on purpose, you should ignore it and practice falling anyway under safe conditions.

Fall practice shouldn't be done for fun, but to increase your strength of mind. If you're scared of taking a whip, you won't climb well. It's that simple. And there's only one way to lessen the fear: and that's by letting go... again and again and again.

Before you start whipper therapy, make sure you have a belayer that you trust completely. Do safety checks, and then ease into the training. Relax. Start with small, preplanned falls. Then take bigger, planned falls. Progress to smaller unannounced falls. And finally, start taking bigger unannounced falls -- either on purpose or on accident, with climbs at your limit.

It may take ten, twenty, or a hundred falls to expand your comfort zone, but the point is to do so in a slow, safe, and incremental way. If you practice being afraid, you will become fearful. If you confront your fears, you will become strong.


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