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Climbing Training Intensity: The RPE Method

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The Rate of Perceived Exertion, or RPE, scale is useful for determining appropriate training intensity for a specific workout. Adapting your training to include this scale will help you maintain focus and achieve your goals.

The RPE scale: 

1 – No effort at all

3 – Easy aerocap and active mobility

5 – Bouldering mileage, below flash level and mixed intensity aerocap. Don’t make this too hard!

7 – Flash boulder grade. Having some extra moves left in the tank. If doing a dead hang for 7 seconds, you want to have about 3 seconds of effort left on each rep.

8 – Most strength elements of training at this level. Failure may occur at the end of the last sets of workouts. So you may fall off the end of climbs on your last go.

9 – Max training effort. Project bouldering and on-sighting at your limit during a training phase.

10 – Testing and top performance effort


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