Maximum Climbing

Mental Training for Peak Performance and Optimal Experience

By Eric J. Horst
(FalconGuides, Paperback, 9780762755325, 288pp.)

Publication Date: April 2010

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 Eric Hörst brings unprecedented clarity to the many cognitive and neurophysical aspects of climbing and dovetails this information into a complete program, setting forth three stages of mental training that correspond to beginner, intermediate, and elite levels of experience and commitment—the ideal template to build upon to personalize one's goals through years of climbing to come. 

About the Author

Eric J. Hörst, an accomplished climber for more than thirty years and a performance coach for twenty, he has helped countless climbers refine their techniques through his six books that have sold more than 150,000 copies worldwide, including Training for Climbing and other FalconGuides; his many magazine articles; his climbing performance Web site (; and his podcasts.

Praise For Maximum Climbing

"There are volumes of books on how to train your body for climbing, but Maximum Climbing teaches you how to climb better by flexing the most critical muscle—the three pound one between your ears. Using a highly detailed step-by-step process that is clearly presented for beginner to expert climbers, Eric Hörst instructs on mental training. His book runs that gamut from A to Z, but my favorites include how to manage fear, build confidence, and focus—three areas all of us need to work on by, until now, didn’t even know where to begin.”—Duane Raleigh, Publisher/Editor-in-Chief Rock and Ice



“For anyone interested in learning more about how the mind works and how important psychological factors are in determining the quality of our experience and performance, Maximum Climbing is a useful and fascinating read. In this powerful text, Hörst presents an impressive collection of mental training techniques, practice exercises, and insights for climbers at all levels of ability.”—Lynn Hill, first woman to climb 5.14



“Eric Hörst’s Maximum Climbing fills a deep need for a training book that explores the broad array of elements that make a climber, fully integrating the physical, technical, mental, and spiritual. This is a book as much about the soul as grit, as inspiring as it is educational.”—Susan E. B. Schwartz, author of Into the Unknown: The Remarkable Life of Hans Kraus



“Eric Hörst’s new book Maximum Climbing, provides climbers with a clear path to athletic mastery. As a climber and performance coach, I’ve sought out every piece of information I could find on improving athletic performance. Use the methods put forth in this book, and you will improve; not just as a climber, but as a human being.”—Steve Bechtel, CSCC, Elemental Training Center



“Dissolving the illusion of mind/body separation, Eric Hörst’s Maximum Climbing shows the way to achieve what I like to call one’s Vertical Path: a completely holistic state of being in which the spirit—the essence of climbing—is woven into the tapestries of our lives.”—John Gill, legendary boulderer and master of rock

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