Project Description

Coach Bradley Hilbert on Youth Team Training Methods

Date: December 4th, 2019

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About Bradley Hilbert

Bradley (“Brad”) Hilbert is the Team Head Coach for Triangle Rock Club in North Carolina and Virginia. He’s helped to develop one of the top youth teams in the country, with more than 100 climbers and 10 coaches. In fact, he’s so good at what he does that when I reached out to Steve Bechtel (all hail…) for a recommendation for a youth coach to have on the podcast, he didn’t even hesitate before exclaiming, “Brad Hilbert!” So here we are…

The reason Bechtel was so excited about Brad is that he’s doing cutting edge stuff with his kids, including testing and training them using strain gauges a la Tyler Nelson. But he’s also really good at coaching kids on a mental/emotional level, fostering a positive team spirit and mutual respect among competitors.

I talked with Brad about how his athletes get stronger while generally staying injury-free, and how he imparts strong morals and values to his teams. We go into the overarching tenets of his program, as well as the nitty-gritty details of what a typical day looks like for the kids on his teams.

Hopefully this interview will give you some ideas about what it takes to have a successful youth team, and maybe help you implement some of his tactics into your own coaching program.

Bradley Hilbert Interview Details

  • His eclectic background and how he got into coaching
  • The biggest challenges of coaching youth
  • Why coaching kids is easier than coaching adults
  • How to build culture in a team
  • Specific drills he uses to assess and train his kids
  • Quarterly strength assessments he does with his team
  • Quantifying how hard you think you can try vs how hard you can actually try
  • 8 books about coaching, health, and mindset he recommends

8 Books He Recommends

  1. Wooden: A Lifetime of Observation and Reflection
  2. Why We Sleep
  3. How Bad Do You Want It?
  4. Atomic Habits
  5. Spark
  6. Quiet
  7. 12 Rules for Life
  8. The Tao of Pooh

Bradley Hilbert Links 

Training Programs for You

Do you want a well-laid-out, easy-to-follow training program that will get you stronger quickly? Here’s what we have to offer on TrainingBeta…

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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, a blog, interviews on the TrainingBeta Podcast, personal training for climbing, and nutrition for climbers.

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