• Ask Sean McColl

    Ask Sean McColl

    World Champion Climber. Future Olympian. Canadian.

ask “Sean McColl”

Thanks for all the questions, keep them coming! Make sure you read the “FAQ” (Frequently Asked Questions) which can be found here. Note: I’ve limited the number of comments per page to avoid having to scroll very far down the page. The newest question that was answered will be at the bottom. You can always find older questions by clicking “older comments”

Comments (1914)

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    Scott

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    Just saw a tv show “American ninga warrior” and couldn’t help but think you might have the talents to be the first person besides 3 Japanese men to ever complete all 3 obstacles.

    Reply

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      Sean McColl

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      I’ve watched the Japanese version and it seemed interesting. The hard part is even getting selected for the show I think. You have to make a movie of all the different obstacles. Do you know for sure if Canadians are allowed to do it? If so, I would take the time to create the movie.

      Reply

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        Pierre

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        Hi Sean,

        Bulgarian gymnast Iordan Iovtchev (who’s still competing in the London Olympics at age 39 btw !) was in the show according to this video:
        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XDfqH2W0PhA

        After a quick search, it doesn’t seem like there are country restrictions. If you do find the time to make a video and apply, I believe you could kick ass at this, although a few of the obstacles seem to be a bit morpho…

        Anyway, good luck for your upcoming comps, keep crushing dude !
        And feel free to keep us posted if there are any news on this ninja warrior front, I guess there are quite a few people coming over here that’d be interested in the outcome !

        Reply

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          Pierre

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          Just watched the second USA vs. the World installment and I absolutely had to come back looking for that thread I remember from years ago! I think if there was still an ounce of doubt left after last year, this year was a definite kick-ass performance, regardless of the overall result. And as a french dude originally from the Grésivaudan valley, it was very flattering to see “Chambéry, France” under your name each time. Congrats man, you did Europe proud! Best of luck for the upcoming bouldering and lead seasons (and speed too, come to think of it)

          Reply

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            Sean McColl

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            Thanks! I hope they do a 3rd installment so we can finish the rubber match.

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    Xian

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    Hi Sean

    I’ve watched some of the Boulder World Cups this and am very impressed by your climbing! I am hoping that you could recommend some shoulder strengthening exercises for me. I’m quite short at 5 ft 2 so often have to make quite big moves when bouldering and sport climbing. I have injured my left shoulder before, nothing too serious, just over strained the muscles. It acts up every now and again and I’ve started to warm up more carefully to prevent re-injuring it. Do you have any exercises to recommend to stabilize the shoulders and also to strengthen them to make bigger and more powerful moves?

    Many thanks! 🙂 And all the best luck for everything 🙂

    Reply

    • Avatar

      Sean McColl

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      I know there are a few stretches / warm up exercises that you can do with a stretchy bandage. The thing that looks like a big elastic. It works on the opposition muscles in your shoulders. I’ve never had a real shoulder injury so I can’t really go into any more depth. As for exercises to make big moves easier, I find that just doing lots of big moves always helps…

      Reply

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    mike

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    how height you are?

    Reply

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    climb9b

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    please tell me what are you eating at competition day, before climb. and i heard that many water is bed for hands. is it true?

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      Sean McColl

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      I am completely against the reasoning that water is bad for your hands. I know some climbers avoid water but I will wash dishes with soap or go in a hot tub (hands submersed) the night before a competition. I try to eat healthy amounts of pasta and drink lots of water with my Skratch mix. I will eat noodles, some meat, trail mix, fruit… Ect. During the competition, energy is key, so I eat good amounts to have enough energy.

      Reply

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    climb9b

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    thank you very much. please tell me are you running and is running good for lead climbing? or for bouldering? or spinning? in one month i have competition in singapore and your advices is important for me. thank you.

    Reply

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      Sean McColl

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      I will be at the competition in Singapore as a coach for Canada 🙂 I cannot run because it hurts my knees but cardio 3 times a week for 40 minutes is very good to add for lead training! I prefer the bicycle, and swimming. Good luck in training!

      Reply

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    climb9b

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    sean i have leg 42.5 which size climbing shoes choose me for lead climbing.

    Reply

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      Sean McColl

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      I cannot tell that for you. I am 41 street shoe and 37.5 climbing…

      Reply

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    kelly chapman

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    Hi Sean,

    Saw you at last year’s bouldering competition in Canmore – great stuff!

    This is a weird question, and i don’t really expect an answer but here it goes. My mother’s family are McColl’s from Alberta (having come over in the early 1900s from the Ottawa area, where they settled in ~1825 upon arriving from the Isle of Mull in Scotland – home of the McColls). I’ve never known of another McColl outside my family, so wondering if there is any chance your part of it. My grandfather, Neil, had several half brothers and sisters, most of whom i haven’t seen since i was kid. I know one went off to live on Vancouver Island somewhere, but can’t remember his name. Just wondering if perchance there is any relation?

    In any case, its great seeing someone who shares the family name excelling in one of my favourite sports.

    Best of luck
    Kelly

    Reply

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    iznogoud

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    sean please tell me how many litre water are you drinking after hard training? usual water, not Skratch mix. and do you drink red bull or other energy drinks? and tell me if they are bed for climbing.

    Reply

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      Sean McColl

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      I only drink Skratch mix, no more water. I will drink red bull if I need a quick boost. I cannot tell you what is bad for you, as I am not a dietition, I can only say what I do, and what I find works.

      Reply

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    Evan Pavan

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    Hey Sean, I’m stumped at my climbing gym. My bouldering is good enough now that I’m able complete all the new problems in a session or two. So I usually just perfect and repeat routes and traverse a lot.
    My question is, how do you make routes for your circuits? I’m no route-setter and have a hard time making up routes with the current holds on the wall that will work my weaknesses. How can I overcome my lack of hard routes at my gym until I can change to a more legitimate facility?

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      Sean McColl

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      The biggest thing is to just have more holds on the walls. I don’t know if you’re allowed to do this at your gym, but by filling the walls with tons if holds, it becomes much easier. Without enough holds, or a pre-set circuit, I’m afraid it just won’t work…

      Reply

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    mallory

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    Hi Sean, great watching you do so well in the World Cup — you’ve become my favorite male climber to watch! My question is whether you have any outdoor projects/routes/boulders in mind, and if so, what are they? I have to believe you could climb some of those 9a+ or maybe harder routes, if you worked them.

    Reply

    • Avatar

      Sean McColl

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      Not too many outdoor projects at the moment. I usually don’t have huge outdoor projects mostly because I train so much. I really want to plan a trip back to Switzerland to finish of “The Story of 2 Worlds” as well as try a bunch of other lines that I didn’t get to try last time I was there. As for routes, there are a few that would be cool to go try, but haven’t put too much thought into them. Dave Graham’s “Coup De Grace” looks amazing and my style, but again, haven’t looked too far into this!

      Reply

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