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30.07.2014
When it rains, it pours
It`s been a while since my last report here on this page. The last entry had the title "When it's going, it's going", and gave some insight into a climber's life.
However, the real challenges in life are starting, when a climber can`t climb anymore! It all begun with an inflammation of my biceps, deep down right at the bone, where the tendon starts. This was a little souvenir from the first ascent of Shantaram. The healing process took much longer than expected and different specialists couldn't come up with useful advice or therapy ideas. A few weeks later, I was bouldering with some kids in a gym when the next accident happened. I broke my thumb, while doing a big dyno. This also cancelled all skiing and ski touring plans I had in the mountains. Six weeks later I was able to climb again. In the meantime my elbow had recovered as well, and I was highly motivated and started with a special training. The intensity was too high and after a few weeks I had another finger injury on my left hand. That´s it, that`s all :-)
 
In bouldering you learn to be patient, and I thought that was one of my strongest character traits. In the last months I had to learn to be patient on a completely different level. I started to do other sports ( running, yoga, gymnastics ) for distraction and motivation, and to keep a daily routine. But a distraction is always just a distraction. All my friends were out on the rocks, and I couldn't climb. Now, after seven months I can say: I am back in the climbing business. This was the longest break of my career. Luckily it's over and now I am highly motivated to start my bouldering season soon.
 
I couldn't climb, but as every year I introduced many kids to the sport of bouldering. First, the school bouldering week in Galtür took place end of June. In the bouldering area Silvapark I developed a bouldering parcours, especially for kids and beginners. Within a week 80 kids climbed their first boulder problems. It was great fun seeing them making fast progress on the rock. Bouldering is a great way to train the whole body. In addition, technique and coordination skills are improved. By doing this playfully, kids develop motivation rapidly to solve smaller problems and enjoy this way of climbing around. Most important is that the kids have fun and that they enjoy a day out. I did my best to do so, and some of them came back to Silvapark a few days later with their parents.
 
The Red Bull UNDER MY WING event in July re-emphasized my commitment to promote kids' outdoor bouldering. Already in spring I visited Austria's climbing and bouldering gyms, mostly in the urban areas of Eastern Austria. I was bouldering with many young people, and it was not easy to choose just a few of them for the „under my wing“ event. I was on the lookout for new talents and motivated climbers, who I wanted to give the opportunity to visit a great outdoor bouldering area, and not just to climb indoors. I invited 18 talented kids from all over Austria to come to Galtür in July. They enjoyed a special bouldering weekend with Fred Nicole and me. The weather wasn't perfect, but that didn't affect the kids motivation to climb. It was a great time and maybe we make another „under my wing“ session next year.
 
Enjoy the new pics and videos, enjoy the summer! I am on the rocks again:-)
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