-- SamsonPhan - 20 Mar 2009

The idea is to have a taxonomy of climbing grasps and attempt to use the eigen grasp dimensionality reduction.

Three Distinct Climbing Types


We won't talk about Aid climbing here becuase it simply involves the use of tools to expand the repertoire of climbable routes.

Face Climbing Hand Techniques

(From http://www.rock-climbing-for-life.com/rock_climbing_101.html)

Gaston: best described as a handhold that is only good from the side; you must hold it with your elbows pointing out and palm facing away from you.

Jug: a massive, easy to hold onto hold.

Pinch: a hold where you must pinch using your thumb and fingers to hold on (they vary in size).

Side pull: crimping or using an open hand grip on a vertical or near vertical hold.

Sloper: sloping hold with very little positive surface like palming a basketball.

Undercling: grabbing a hold with the palm facing up.

Crimp Open Hand Grip
Gaston Jug
Pinch Sidepull
Sloper Undercling

Crimp: the most natural and stressful way to grip a rock hold; characterized by hyperextension of the first joint in the fingers and nearly full contraction of the second joint.
Open Hand Grip: gripping the rock with the first joint in the fingers and keeping the hand open. This is the safest hand position for your joints.


from (http://opp.uoregon.edu/climbing/topics/cracks.html)

Finger Cracks

1. For the thinnest cracks, use a thumbs up position to allow you to slot your pinky and ring finger. Look for a constriction in the crack and slide your hand in above it and pull down to set the jam. 2. You'll get a secure jam if you can slot your first knuckle just above the constriction so it gets wedged in tight when you pull down. For a tighter lock, cam your hand inward, towards your thumb.

1. When the cracks get a little wider, insert your hand in the thumbs down position to use the index and middle fingers. 2. Note how the fingers stack on one another, putting as many digits in the crack as possible. Again, twisting your hand inward increases the counter pressure for a more secure lock.
1. As the crack widens you may be able to slot the thumb too. 2. Stack your fingers and cam your hand by rotating your elbow inward.

Hand Cracks

Too large to get good finger jams, but perfect for the hand, notice how you can create oppositional pressure by cupping your fingers and flexing your thumb. As with finger cracks, you can slot a hand jam in the thumbs up or thumbs down position. Experiment with both. How do the different positions affect your arm position and your body position?
1. Make your hand as thin as possible and slide it in the crack, moving it up and down to feel around for constrictions in the crack that you may not be able to see. 2. To create counter pressure you can cup you hand pressing your fingers on one side and your knuckles on the other. To fatten your palm flex your thumb down as if you were trying to touch it to the base of your pinky. As the crack widens, notice how your fingers pull down even further in a "crimped" position.

Fist Cracks

Uh oh! too wide for a hand jam... what to do?
As the crack widens notice how the fingers are crimped all the way down, but they are beginning to lose purchase on the right side of the crack.

Turn your fist palm down and ball up your fist, clenching tight to expand the fleshy part of your palm to create counter pressure.

Introduction to Eigengrasp

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