Training with a Slackline

Set up your own outdoor training routine!

As bouldering season approaches, I’ve decided to train for the upcoming competitions by combining one of my favorite pastimes (slacklining) with some of the classic gym tools like rings and holds. Since being cooped up in a chalk filled gym on blissful sunny, summer days doesn’t seem reasonable, this time I’ve taken to the outdoors as much as possible.

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My newest training apparatus is called the Ninja Line – Pro Kit. Essentially it is a 35ft 2” wide slackline that has clipping points sewn into the line every so often. From these clipping points you can attach, well just about anything. The kit itself comes with a variety of textured grips including cones, sticks, and balls. These grips hang below the line and above your head allowing you to traverse monkey bar style from one end of the line to the other. The Ninja Line is similar in style to some of the obstacles you might find in the ever popular American Ninja Warrior events which so many pro climbers have been drawn to participate in for obvious reasons.

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While training I was surprised to find how pumped I could get only after a few laps, and I immediately realized how useful this method could be in training grip strength, power endurance, and campus power. As I began training with this tool it soon became apparent that the Ninja Line created a great structure to set up ones own personal training system anywhere outdoors with the aid of a few trees. It wasn’t long before I began hanging my training rings, hammock, and anything else I could think of from the clipping points. This created the perfect way to cross train outside of the gym while setting up a fun new training routine which has definitely gotten me feeling fitter faster! I’m consistently finding new things to hang on my line and then adding them to my training collection.

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I typically do about 3-5 laps on the basic grips which came with the ninja line. Rest for 3-5 minutes, then I do an average of ten “ice cream maker” pull-ups, ten “typewriter” pull-ups, and ten regular pull ups. After another 3-5 minute rest, I then do a ring routine involving lock off pushups, muscle ups, one foot front levers, followed by hanging lock offs. I then rest for another 3-5 minutes and do some dead hangs on various different climbing holds which I also hang from the line. I typically repeat this routine a few times then chill out in my hammock-which also works great on the line.

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This training line is easy to set up and in minutes you can have your own personal outdoor training area. I do recommend bringing a small step ladder with you to help create the proper height required to set the line up so your feet don’t dangle too close to the ground. I also like to bring a regular slackline, frisbee, picnic, portable speaker, invite some friends out and generally make a sweet afternoon of it. After all, training doesn’t have to be all work and no play, integration is key!

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