Michaela Kiersch is a professional climber and studies bioscience. She is also coaching a competitive climbing team for kids (ages 5-19). The rest of her time and energy is dedicated to climbing, both as a competitor and an outdoor climber. She started climbing when she was 7 years old and instantly fell in love with this movement based sport. She is extremely competitive by nature and the fact that there are endless challenges in climbing excites her.
Identify hand and footholds, feel out holds with stacked pads, collaborate with friends, search the internet for beta. Transcript: "How do you read a bouldering route? The first thing I do is try and identify all of the potential handholds and footholds and then I try to notice the direction and the shape of the hold, how I might grab it, what order would make sense to grab the holds in order to reach to to the top and where my feet might be. When that happens if you are by yourself, sometimes it's helpful to touch the hold stacked pads, feel them all out. Imagine the sequences. If you have a group of friends collaboration is key. And if If all else fails, you can always search the internet, YouTube, Instagram, and, and see if there's any videos of someone else trying, and maybe try and incorporate some of their beta."
Increase finger strength by using a mixture of small Edge, hangs at your maximum capacity and also using larger edges with wait. Listen to your body and take rest days for safety. Transcript: "There are many different ways to increase your finger strength and because I've been climbing for 20 years, my mind might not apply to everybody, but I like to incorporate a mixture of small Edge, hangs at my maximum capacity and also using larger edges with wait in order to increase the strength of my fingers. I think it's important to also take rest days, listen to your body, doing things on smaller edges, can lead to injury, especially if If your body isn't prepared for that. So just be careful and have fun."
I think the key to dealing with not being successful all the time is to keep perspective and recognize that failure is part of the process. It's important to take a step back when needed to come back with fresh outlook, energy, and motivation. Transcript: "How do you deal with not being successful all the time? What keeps you focused on achieving your goals? I think this is really good question because so much of climbing is about failure and falling and learning and trying again and without those moments, our successes and our sons wouldn't be as meaningful or as valuable to us. So I think keeping that perspective in mind is really helpful, just really recognizing that failure is part of the process. And the challenge is why I love climbing so much. Much and whether that challenge be figuring out a sequence, figuring out how to train for a roux or just physically working really, really hard. I think that's important. And sometimes I think it's also important to take a step back, if you feel like you're mentally, not ready. And then coming back with a fresh Outlook, or a fresh perspective, and more energy and motivation."
It's a balancing act and I need to prioritize things like exams. I'm lucky to have friends in both climbing and school, which makes it easier to manage. I need to make time for the things that are important to me and accept that I can't be the best at everything all at once. Transcript: "How do I handle academics with professional climbing, as well as having a personal life. I get this question a lot and the answer is never as straightforward as people would like, but it's definitely a balancing act, any given week or month. I need to prioritize things like exams in school or maybe a trip outside somewhere and that means that the other areas might take a little bit of a dive and that's just something that I have to be okay with you know sometimes my climbing isn't going to be my top priority which means my Since might suffer a little bit, but I'll be doing really well in school. As far as my personal life. I'm lucky to have many friends in climbing, which makes it easy as well as in school. And it's just the things that are important to you need to learn to make time for and sort of accept that you can't be the best at all areas of your life at once."
My warmup usually consists of light off-the-wall exercises and stretching, followed by some easy climbing with stretching on the wall. I listen to my body and adjust the intensity based on how I feel that day. Transcript: "My warmup largely consists of climbing but I do start with a few off-the-wall exercises, some light stretching, maybe a few hangs and then really easy climbing some stretching while on the wall and I work my way up to my max level over a period of 30 minutes to an hour. And I think it's key when you're warming up to really listen to your body, you might not need the same thing every day, as in my experience."
My long-term goal in climbing is to stay passionate and continue learning, growing, and improving as a climber for the rest of my life. Transcript: "What are my long-term goals and aspirations in climbing? I would say that my number one, long-term goal is to climb forever and to love it forever. So I take a lot of steps to make sure that it remains passion. For me doesn't get too tedious. I avoid burnout and all the while I'm working on my weaknesses and growing as a climber in general. There's of course some grade ranges I'd like to accomplish but more than anything I think that I'd like to see myself continue to grow improve and learn and climbing for the rest of my life."