Hoseok Lee on Training, The Moonboard and Hard Boulders
- So you have been climbing for 6 years and have reached some very impressive feats of strength. How often do you train and do you follow a structured training plan?
I climb more or less 5 days a week. Usually structured as following: two consecutive days of climbing followed by a rest day also followed by two consecutive climbing days again. Exceptions are when I take two days off and that’s either when I’m too tired and feel like I need more rest than a day or when I’m going for an outdoor project that’s at my limit, but never more than 2 days for resting. And yes that’s true that I’ve been climbing for a little more than 6 years now, but I do not think I’m strong or even a good climber myself, no where near impressive I’d say; it’s just that I’m only a little better at some specific climbing styles and that’s usually the ones that seem to highlight one’s general core and finger strength like the Moonboard. And I don’t follow a strict training plan. I just do what I like to do which is climbing on the Moonboard and other calisthenics that I think would help me improve in general strength.
- Besides working hard for goals, are there any tips you have on training or things you found made a big difference in your climbing?
I don’t think I could have been at where I am right now if it were not for training on the Moonboard.
Being introduced to the Moonboard world was a big big milestone for my climbing and that’s where I gained most, if not all, of my strength I have right now.
And I think the best tip for the non-pro climbers would be “Do what you LIKE to do, and do your best doing it.” So basically one should HAVE FUN training and doing whatever they desire to, so that they don’t lose their interest in climbing/training. BUT the only condition is to do your BEST doing it.
If you’re a pro climber, things are different. A pro must do/train their weaknesses and things they don’t particularly enjoy cuz that’s what a pro means and, at their levels, it’s the only way to improve. But I believe we as amateur climbers don’t need to follow the same steps. We don’t need to cover every aspect of climbing or skills. Sticking with what we personally like to do would just do enough to improve only if we do our best with passion burning like fire.
- Do you have any main goals at the moment? Either climbing or training based?
My goal... I don’t know if I can call this a goal, but I want to climb more double digit climbs outside, climbs that are at my limit. There aren’t many hard outside climbs in Korea. So I must travel for it though.
- Do you have any dream lines you would like to climb outside? A few board like problems spring to mind such as ones in Switzerland, Off The Wagon? Could make a Moonboard replica to train on!
My lifetime goal is to climb Off the Wagon (V14 in Magic Woods) someday. And maybe some hardcore roof classics around the world as roof climbs are my favorite types.
- Would you consider coming over to Europe on a climbing trip?
Most definitely! I also want to train in School Room one day!!
Not to mention other well-known climbing destinations like Font and Magic Wood etc.
- You train a lot on the Moonboard, what makes it such a good training tool?
Oh this one will take time to answer cuz there’re so many!
But I’ll only name a few here.
Training on the Moonboard basically means that you climb with a thousand different route setters around the world. You never get bored. Building strength wise, it’s the best tool out there. It’s not boring like hangboarding but train your fingers just the same. It’s fun. Holds are small so you can train for your outdoor projects. It’s also motivating. Safe to say more motivating than any other boards out there for its unique benchmark system. And I think the fixed angle of the wall is also much better and more user friendly than the adjustable ones cuz say, when the wall’s adjustable and a strong guy is holding the board at 70 degrees, his rookie friends can not hang out with him. It’s only more isolating people. But on the Moonboard, everyone climbs together burning session on each of their different projects on the same wall, same spot altogether at the same time.
- Favourite Moonboard set?
I like three of them all: 2016, 2017, 2019
They all have different styles and I don’t favor one over another.
- Favourite Moonboard problem?
I Burnt Off Megos (V11, 8A)
One of the hardest MB benchmark problems I’ve ever done and I did it in a session. Definitely a boulder to remember. And I like the name of it too hahaha