T Nation

5/3/1 and Rope Climbing


#1

Hey all,

I would like to combine running 5/3/1 for the main lifts with a fair amount of volume on rope climbing (2/3 times a week), training three days a week. Obviously there are plenty of ways how to set this up, does anyone have any recommendations?


Conditioning Involving Mostly or Only Upper Body?
Conditioning Involving Mostly or Only Upper Body?
#2

While it may be a little more grip intensive, I don’t see why you couldn’t do it in between pressing sets. Seems like it’d be similar to doing chins/facepulls in between.


#3

From previous experience, I doubt this would work. How does this look?

MON

deadlift - 531 + fsl
weighted chins
front squat - 3x8
WED

bench - 531 + fsl
rope climbing

FRI

squat - 531 + fsl
press - 531 + fsl
lunges - 3x10

The weighted chins would complement the climbing, hopefully.


#4

[quote]nighthawkz wrote:
The weighted chins would complement the climbing, hopefully.[/quote]
I really like rope climbing, but I find it more demanding than it is given credit for.

I think the setup you have suggested looks good, but for progress you might need more frequency (?)

You could always integrate partials to your other days
e.g Tieing a rope to the top of a rack and wedging your feet at the base.
Start at the tope and using a hand under hand grip lower yourself backward keeping
the core as rigid as possible.
Then use a hand over hand motion to return to vertical.

Seems to be good for grip strength, lats and abdominal bracing, but nowhere near as taxing as full climbs.


#5

[quote]donnydarkoirl wrote:
I really like rope climbing, but I find it more demanding than it is given credit for.

I think the setup you have suggested looks good, but for progress you might need more frequency (?)

You could always integrate partials to your other days
e.g Tieing a rope to the top of a rack and wedging your feet at the base.
Start at the tope and using a hand under hand grip lower yourself backward keeping
the core as rigid as possible.
Then use a hand over hand motion to return to vertical.

Seems to be good for grip strength, lats and abdominal bracing, but nowhere near as taxing as full climbs.
[/quote]

Thanks for the advice. I’ve done rope climbing before, going as high as 6m in one go (so basically climbing to the roof of a school gym with no leg assistance) but I’ve never done more than one climb in the same training session. I know that a full climb up and down can be more draining than a set of deadlifts, which is why I thought I’d bounce some ideas here. It’s a tough exercise and if your grip fails it can be dangerous, so I won’t treat it lightly.


#6

Why do you want to do rope climbing?

Just curious.

tweet


#7

Grip, lat and arm strength. It’s basically the badass cousin of the pullup.

Also, my gym actually had a rope hanging from the tallest rack, so the opportunity is already there.


#8

[quote]nighthawkz wrote:
Grip, lat and arm strength. It’s basically the badass cousin of the pullup.

Also, my gym actually had a rope hanging from the tallest rack, so the opportunity is already there.[/quote]
Nice.

Post up some of your feedback after a while.
I’d love to get your thoughts after a few sessions.


#9

[quote]donnydarkoirl wrote:

[quote]nighthawkz wrote:
Grip, lat and arm strength. It’s basically the badass cousin of the pullup.

Also, my gym actually had a rope hanging from the tallest rack, so the opportunity is already there.[/quote]
Nice.

Post up some of your feedback after a while.
I’d love to get your thoughts after a few sessions.[/quote]

Ask me again in June :slight_smile: It’ll be a few more weeks until I start doing this and I like to get a lot of data before I evaluate things.


#10

[quote]nighthawkz wrote:
Grip, lat and arm strength. It’s basically the badass cousin of the pullup.

Also, my gym actually had a rope hanging from the tallest rack, so the opportunity is already there.[/quote]
Sounds good. I wish I had a rope to climb.

tweet


#11

So, an update.

I’ve been using the above template for seven weeks now. I also added prowler sprints to the Monday and Friday sessions; this, diet and stress made me lean out a bit. my lifts still progressed, albeit at a very slow pace. On Wednesday, I climbed the rope.

Now, let me be clear that I’m talking about climbing a 15’ rope using nothing but your hands, starting and ending each set with your arse on the ground and the legs straddled. I progressed by adding sets, starting with two and going all the way up to ten this week. I started with three minute rest periods but this became unsustainable after set five; I think the longest rest period today was 6-7 minutes. It really fries your grip.

Now, I didn’t notice any visual changes but my grip strength seems to be much better these days. However, if I had to redo it, I’d probably add more days of climbing and reduce the volume on each day.

Speaking of visual changes - I’m very sceptical now when I hear people say rope climbing is great for your biceps. The answer is yes and no. It certainly taxes your arms (your triceps as well since your lower arm always makes a bit of a pushdown movement), but I’m not sure if the jerky kind of way it does so really builds your guns very well. It’s a more brutish cousin of rock climbing movements and climbers aren’t known for their hyoooge guns. Just saying. I really, really need that deload week now - at least my elbows do.


#12

Terrific work man, thanks a million for following through and sharing your feedback