Experimental Hangboard Training Program

Starting a climbing website became an excellent opportunity for me to study training for climbing in-depth. After all, the best way to learn something is to write about it. It also made it possible for me to get to know some fantastic people who are very motivated to improve their climbing performance. After reading dozens of scientific papers and books on the physiology of sports training, hangboarding, mechanisms of fatigue and energy systems, and after adding my 15 years of climbing experience on top of that, I decided it was time to put knowledge into practice.

I’m currently developing and testing my own Experimental Hangboard Training Program that’s based on cutting edge climbing research. The program is addressed to both boulderers, and lead climbers and the training sessions are tailored to fit the climbers’ current goals and climbing schedules.

A group of climbers agreed to participate in the experiment by following the prescribed training protocols and undergoing periodic assessments to test their progress. Some of the climbers are people I met through my website, and some of them are old friends, but they’ve all patiently followed my guidelines, and I’ve learned a ton from every one of them! 

Below you can find a ranking with the most recent test results of all the climbers following the program. The ranking is based on the recent maximum finger strength test results [1] and Critical Force test results [2]. The results are then fed into an algorithm that outputs a score and the calculated predicted bouldering and lead climbing level. The tables also include the current climbing level reported by the participant, as well as the personal best results.

Table 1: Experimental Hangboard Training Program  – bouldering ranking.

RankNameMVC-7/BWCurrent levelPredicted level
1Daniele1.91V11 (8A)V11 (8A)
2Alberto1.81n.a.V10 (7C+)
3Jędrzej1.66V7 (7A+) (MB)V8 (7B+)
4Jose Miguel1.56V8 (7B+)V8 (7B)
5Sam1.32V6 (7A)V4 (6B+)
6Jose Antonio1.17V5 (6C)V4 (6B)
7Piotr1.15V5 (6C)V5 (6C)

Table 2: Experimental Hangboard Training Program  – lead climbing ranking.

RankNameScoreCurrent levelPredicted levelPersonal best
1Daniele13835.13c (8a+)5.13c (8a+)5.13c (8a+) in 08.2020
2Jędrzej1373above 5.12b (7b)5.13c (8a+)5.12b (7b) in 2014
3Jose Miguel12405.13c (8a+)5.13b (8a)5.14a (8b+)
4Sam12005.13a (7c+)5.13a (7c+)5.13b (8a) in 2019
5Alberto10935.13a (7c+)5.12d (7c)5.14a/b (8b+/c) in 2000
6Jose Antonio8305.12a (7a+)5.11d (7a)5.12a (7a+) in 2020
7Piotr8285.13a (7c+)5.11d (7a)5.13a (7c+) in 08.2020


  1. J. Banaszczyk, StrengthClimbing – Climbing Finger Strength Analyzer 2.0, June 25, 2020. (link)
  2. J. Banaszczyk, StrengthClimbing – Climbing Critical Force Calculator, May 19, 2019. (link)