Have you seen the System Board at your local climbing gym and wondered what to do with it?

This is an article from Steve Bechtel‘s site, climbstrong.com, explaining just that; how to train on a system board.

The system board is a small climbing wall set up with paired matched holds spaced out evenly. The feet are also set up that way. This is super important to be able to replicate the same moves on the left and right side….

The major benefit of system training is to eliminate weak movement patterns and create bilateral strength. These are two major problems with a “just climb” mentality in the gym. When training on gym routes or problems, we just don’t balance the loads to the left and right limbs – it would be impossible to boulder symmetically.”  -Steve Bechtel

In this article Steve goes into detail about the design of system board sessions.

He explains how to set up a system wall, how to create your sessions and training plans, how to measure your progression, and three categories of exercises to try (body position, strength and power, and power endurance).

This article is full of really good information about the system board and how much it can help your climbing.

As Steve puts it…

Climbing coach Neil Gresham talks about three pillars of good climbing movement, all of which can be mastered with a good system board training plan:

1. Precise footwork
2. Fluid movement
3. Correct pacing

With this in mind, I’ll lay down the golden rule of training for climbing: always focus on technical correctness – perfect movement. By making small adjustments to form and keeping the sets short, the climber using a systems wall has the ideal opportunity to fix errors.”

Check out the full article to learn how you could be adding system board sessions into your training…..

CLICK HERE: Intro to System Board Training 


Steve Bechtel is the author of Strength: Foundational Training for Rock Climbers.

To hear more from Steve Bechtel listen to our podcast interview with him here.

steve bechtel podcast interview

TrainingBeta is a site dedicated to training for rock climbing. We provide resources and information about training for routes, bouldering, finger strength, mental training, nutrition for climbers, and everything in between. We offer climbing training programs, climbing training classes, nutrition classes, regular blog posts, interviews on The TrainingBeta Podcast, personal coaching for climbing, and nutrition for climbers.

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