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Finger strength is the most critical quality in climbing, and all other skills derive from it. Finger strength should be trained regularly to maintain slow but steady progress. Fortunately, there exist many training protocols that are a surefire way to get you that iron claw you always craved!

Finger strength training for climbing on a hangboard - Steve Bechtel's Ladders protocol
Strength Training

Steve Bechtel’s 3-6-9 Ladders hangboard finger strength training

Steve Bechtel designed his 3-6-9 Ladders protocol as an effective and safe strength training method that can be used both off-season and during the season, while not leading to overtraining or injury. His idea was to reduce the load to the necessary minimum and progress the volume instead. But that does not mean that the loads used are light! Try an 8-week cycle with Steve Bechtel’s 3-6-9 Ladders protocol to trigger both neural and structural adaptations of the forearm muscles!

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Eva Lopez MaxHangs Hangboard Routine climbing training
Strength Training

Eva López MaxHangs hangboard routine for finger strength

The Maximum Hangs (MaxHangs) protocols were developed and popularized by Eva López. The training protocols are low volume and high intensity, and their effectiveness is scientifically proven! MaxHangs became widely accepted in the climbing community and are among the most popular hangboard protocols. The routine can be executed in two versions, the minimum edge with no added weight (MaxHangs MED) and on a fixed edge depth with added weight (MaxHangs MAW). Both methods trigger neural adaptations through short TUT and high loads.

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Strength Training

Eric Hörst’s “7-53” finger strength hangboard routine

The Maximum Weight “7-53” protocol is a highly effective strength training method developed by Eric Hörst as something in between the classic 7/3 Repeaters protocol and Eva López’s MaxHangs. This highly time efficient protocol is the middle ground between strength and strength endurance training, and it is recommended for intermediate and advanced climbers. With this method, Eric progressed from 22.5 kg to 41 kg added weight on a 14 mm edge and it’s his favorite hangboard protocol!

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