Do you enjoy climbing but want to develop further skills and strength but don’t really know where to start? Gimme Kraft by Patrick Matros, Ludwig “Dicki” Korb and Hannes Huch is a comprehensive guide to getting fitter and stronger for all types of climbing.
“How do I get stronger?… train most efficiently?…what exercises make the most sense?” are questions set out in the introduction. These questions are readily answered in a compact, enjoyable and motivating training manual.
The design of this book is one of the things we liked most about it. It’s funky bright green cover stands out on the bookshelf as if just screaming to be read. The shape is slightly awkward for a bookshelf but again its oblong nature makes it stick out from the rest so easily identified!
The pictures are also very useful, showing exactly what is expected out of each exercise and numbered if it is a sequence of moves. We also liked the fact that it is pretty much 50/50 on the male/female pictures and the women are doing equally hard training moves (rather than just sitting quietly smiling in pink bikinis).
Information lay out
There is an introduction explaining how the manual is set out with handy tips and advice on not only how to use the book most effectively but how to approach it in terms of attitude! The chapters are easy to navigate and there is a guide on each exercise on whether it is for beginner, intermediate or pro climbers. This is handy as it is potentially dangerous to attempt some of these exercises if you are not very experienced at some things, such as finger strength. However, there are also indicators of how to build up to this level and alternative exercises- so you don’t feel left out of any particular area of practice. The book is dotted with “pro tips” from professional climbers.
The book is in English and German so great if you are brushing up on your language skills!
Relevance to the average climber
What we liked about this book is it doesn’t presume everyone has access to a peg board or other such bizarre climbing training accessories (there are some exercises on the peg board!) as the types of equipment it covers are vast ranging from common things in the gym, such as TRX straps and gym balls to climbing specific equipment you can find in most climbing centres such as pull up bar and finger boards. So if you couldn’t access a climbing wall for some time you could still focus on climbing training and take your motivation to the gym or do certain things at home.
Other things we liked
The book comes with a CD showing footage from the late and great Wolfgang Gullich, the inspiration for the training book. We love old footage and watching the sheer power and innovative thinking that inspired a whole generation of climbers to train hard…. One armed pull ups? Why not!
The book is awkward to take with you to the wall or gym due to its shape and size/ However the exercises are quite easy to jot down on some paper or take a picture with your phone.
Verdict for Gimme Kraft
We totally recommend this book if you are looking to gain extra skills and strength in specific areas to improve your climbing and reach goal. It’s fun, creative and inspiring!