Login with Facebook
 ADVANCED
Barefoot climbing, Is it gross??!?!!?
View Latest Posts in This Forum or All Forums
   Page 1 of 4.  1  2  3  4   Next>   Last>>
Follow replies to this topic? Notify me at the top of web site.
1

Email me.
 
 
By Tradoholic
Oct 16, 2010
On occasion I like to slip off the shoes for a little extra challenge but I have been met with some backlash regarding the cleanliness of the practice. One such soul equated this with pissing and shitting at the base of the crag!

I don't find barefooting to be gross in the least for a variety of reasons such as how damn dirty hands get during climbing anyway. We ARE outdoors and not in the kitchen. Am I the asshole here?

MP's, please sound off.

FLAG
By Chris treggE
Administrator
From Madison, WI
Oct 16, 2010
Other fun stuff.
Who does this guy think he is???

Zschiesche back in the day,.. of skin and bones, a...
Zschiesche back in the day,.. of skin and bones, and bad mullets. Sending the crimpfest barefoot, circa 1995.

FLAG
By Evan S
From Erie, CO
Oct 16, 2010
Me, of course
Outside, do whatever you want. I personally think climbing barefoot is a little silly, but obviously some people have taken a fondness too it over the years.

In the gym however, keep your damn stinky cheesy warty gross feet in a shoe or you might get smacked. EWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWW

FLAG
By Scott McMahon
From Boulder, CO
Oct 16, 2010
Bocan
Evan S wrote:
Outside, do whatever you want. I personally think climbing barefoot is a little silly, but obviously some people have taken a fondness too it over the years. In the gym however, keep your damn stinky cheesy warty gross feet in a shoe or you might get smacked. EWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWW


+10 I hate it when people climb barefoot indoors. What makes anyone think that I want to put my hands where your feet have been? It's usually people showing off...look I can climb this in my bare feet.

FLAG
By JSlack
Oct 16, 2010
O Yeaaaaaaa
I walk around barefoot a lot and have done a fair amount of barefoot climbing. Lots of people think it is gross and this doesn't make any sense to me. How is my barefoot any more gross than the bottom of your shoe? @ Scott: Why would touching a hold where my shoe has been be any better than touching a hold where my bare foot has been?

FLAG
By Hansel
From Boulder, CO
Oct 16, 2010
My ride
Evan S wrote:
Outside, do whatever you want...In the gym however, keep your damn stinky cheesy warty gross feet in a shoe or you might get smacked. EWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWW


+1 for keeping the shoes ON in the gym. Let's face it: feet do harbor germs and viruses (i.e. plantar warts, etc), while hands are typically washed more easily and frequently. Also, in the gym, swamp coolers keep it nice and moist -- a perfect breeding ground for keeping bacteria and viruses alive a LOT longer than they'd live outside.

FLAG
By Brian Scoggins
From Eugene, OR
Oct 16, 2010
Jake Sahl wrote:
I walk around barefoot a lot and have done a fair amount of barefoot climbing. Lots of people think it is gross and this doesn't make any sense to me. How is my barefoot any more gross than the bottom of your shoe? @ Scott: Why would touching a hold where my shoe has been be any better than touching a hold where my bare foot has been?


Typically you don't have ringworm on the exterior of your shoe. Wrong environment to grow that shit. Basically, I should have to wash my hands before (and after) I eat a powerbar in the gym, not before I touch my face under any circumstances.

FLAG
By Scott McMahon
From Boulder, CO
Oct 16, 2010
Bocan
Jake Sahl wrote:
I walk around barefoot a lot and have done a fair amount of barefoot climbing. Lots of people think it is gross and this doesn't make any sense to me. How is my barefoot any more gross than the bottom of your shoe? @ Scott: Why would touching a hold where my shoe has been be any better than touching a hold where my bare foot has been?


I think there's a big difference between the rubber that's only been walking around on the gym floor and the foot that's been inside a smelly bacteria laden shoe. Yeah, I wouldn't eat off the floor, but considering there are threads upon threads of "how do I make my shoes stop stinking" you can see my issue. I'm sure the bottom of the shoe is gross to, but it sure isn't a smelly foot.

Climbing barefoot inside you'll utilize more of the hold that are "hand holds".

FLAG
 
By Carl Sherven
Oct 16, 2010
Sometimes I take my shoes off when climbing outdoors too. I don't see any problem with it, and if someone tells me not to I won't listen to them (unless they own the land I'm on). Like Rhoads said, your hands get very dirty anyway

Side Rant: We keep our feet in a dark, warm, moist environment almost all the time. Yet somehow most people can't figure out why their feet smell so bad and are prone to bacterial infections like athlete's foot. They take their shoes off and think "wow my feet stink, I'm gonna put my shoes back on so I don't have to deal with this", which is exactly why they smell so damn bad in the first place. Our feet are extremely complex, are relatively small compared to the rest of us, and must withstand thousands of impacts every day bearing our entire bodyweight. Most people are at least somewhat aware of this, yet they choose to wear shoes that put more emphasis on style and looks rather than keeping their feet healthy. Then they can't figure out how on earth they developed serious foot problems. Our feet are only nasty and prone to injury because of the way we treat them.

FLAG
By Zach Wahrer
From The Road
Oct 16, 2010
Unknown problem at Hueco.
Lol, If its outdoors, who cares? Indoors, yeah, kinda nasty considering the traffic that rolls through a gym in a week. Whats even worse is when you see people go to the bathroom (and more specifically use a urinal) in their climbing shoes. I just hope that I'm not getting on any routes immediately after them and that everyone else wears the piss off the holds before I get to them. Lol.

But chalk is antibacterial and antiviral right? It can pretty much kill everything, including AIDS... 0.o

FLAG
By Christian "crisco" Burrell
From PG, Utah
Oct 16, 2010
Our less than official sponsor!
I think you also have to consider the natural oils on both hands and feet. We try to take care of some of these oils on our hands with chalk. But even if you do chalk your feet prior to starting a climb, I imagine it quite difficult to re-chalk part way up the route (funny image in my head of someone trying to stick their foot in a chalk bag :)). I am not a dermatologist so I do not know what the properties of this oil is, but common reasoning is that the oil does have an effect on the slipperiness and erosional effect of each hold; this would seem to only quicken the polishing of a hold.
Could we get a more scientific input on this topic?
That being said, I get why many try to climb barefoot and I don't have a beef with the reasoning at all. I just wonder what the actual long term effects of this practice would be on the holds themselves.

FLAG
By Choss Chasin'
From Torrance, CA
Oct 16, 2010
Black Mountain
If I wanted to touch yer sweaty smelly feet I would have become a foot masseuse. Feet pick up many skin diseases that other parts of your body typically wouldn't due to being wedged in a dark sweaty shoe for hours on end. If you just hiked 45 minutes and your feet are sweating, then you pull your shoes off and barefoot the climb I'm about to do I'm gonna be pissed. Not to mention if you slip and rip your foot open then bleed all over some climb I'm gonna be really pissed.

If you climb indoors without shoes I'm going to drag you out side and beat the stupid out of you! It's disgusting and unsanitary. If you need to ask what's the difference between your foot and a piece of rubber, get a clue! Just in case you cant find a clue I'll lend a quick hand.

Here is a tiny list of things that a foot can have:
Atheletes foot
Bunions
Warts
Corns
Ringworm

Here is what a piece of rubber can have:
Dirt

Either keep your shoes on or climb where no one else will.

FLAG
By Chris D
From the couch
Oct 16, 2010
Sign near the Third Flatiron
The idea that anyone has the authority/right to insist that someone wear shoes on a climb outdoors is just preposterous. I'm surprised that anyone here would be so presumptuous to assume it was any of their business.

If you're such a germ-o-phobe that you're afraid to follow a barefoot climber, bring a can of lysol, or climb another route? Maybe go to the gym, where such offensive behavior can be tightly controlled?

Unless it is prohibited by the area's land use regulations, feel free to climb naked if you want to.

As an aside, I doubt anyone here would have any complaint to lodge against these barefoot climbers

FLAG
By M Sprague
Administrator
From New England
Oct 16, 2010
Lichen head. Me, with my usual weatherbeaten, lich...
Some of you people are WAY too uptight. I really like to climb bare foot, obviously not on all routes, but I find many actually easier without shoes, especially really steep routes. I also love the different feel and body awareness that bare feet can give.

My feet aren't any grosser than most peoples shoes or hands. How many people do you know who have ring worm? If your feet are gross or you have an infectious disease, than don't climb, just like with your hands. It is common decency to wash you hands after using the bathroom at the gym and not to come in if you have an infection or are sick. You don't wipe your hands in shit and then climb in the gym do you?. I usually just climb barefoot outdoors, but will occasionally do a route or two in the gym if I don't think the owners are going to get uptight, or if my feet have been in shoes too long and gotten not so fresh.

The human body has evolved over millions of years. You might be surprised how well it works when used the way it was designed and not always squashed and distorted.

You people should try bare foot climbing some. It takes about a month for your feet to toughen up and to get used to it, but I can use very small foot hold or smear no problem. Just pick the right routes to start on and only do one route the first day. Steep or a fairly tight TR is obviously best. You don't want to take a whipper down on to your bare feet or slide down a slab like you could with shoes

Me redpointing Tin Monkeys at Rumney
Me redpointing Tin Monkeys at Rumney

FLAG
By Jake D.
From Northeast
Oct 16, 2010
I think outside is a bit better..

inspired a bit by Mark, ward and smitty.


FLAG
By Brian Scoggins
From Eugene, OR
Oct 16, 2010
M Sprague wrote:
How many people do you know who have ring worm? If your feet are gross or you have an infectious disease, than don't climb, just like with your hands. It is common decency to wash you hands after using the bathroom at the gym and not to come in if you have an infection or are sick. You don't wipe your hands in shit and then climb in the gym do you?. I usually just climb barefoot outdoors, but will occasionally do a route or two in the gym if I don't think the owners are going to get uptight, or if my feet have been in shoes too long and gotten not so fresh.


Right, since I have no way of knowing if they have ringworm (which is often called athlete's foot), the next time I see somebody climbing barefoot in the gym, I'll ask before getting on the route "Do you have ringworm or athlete's foot?", and if the answer is yes, ask a gym employee to lend me some Lysol while I climb. Seems reasonable to me.

I don't really care about routes outdoors, where the environment kills such things and typically there's enough to go around. But if I paid to climb at that gym, I think I should have a pretty reasonable expectation that some "in touch with nature" wanna-be hippy won't force me to deal with whatever foot maladies he may or may not have.

Having worked in several gyms in the past, I can assure you, its not because we expect every dude who climbs barefoot to have all kinds of weird foot rot, its that it only takes one dickbag to fuck it up for everybody, and we won't know if you're that dickbag until its too late.

FLAG
 
By M Sprague
Administrator
From New England
Oct 16, 2010
Lichen head. Me, with my usual weatherbeaten, lich...
Jake D. wrote:
inspired a bit by Mark, ward and smitty.

..who were inspired by the great tradition of the euros climbing barefoot on sandstone, Jimmie Dunn in our area, and many others.

FLAG
By Orphaned
Oct 16, 2010
You can figure out who the stinky barefoot hippies are in this thread.

I run a gym that allowed barefoot climbing before I took over. It is 100% not allowed now. I rule with an iron fist.




Dirty barefoot hippies
Dirty barefoot hippies

FLAG
By Scott McMahon
From Boulder, CO
Oct 16, 2010
Bocan
There are two arguments going on right now, with everyone responding to each other...

Overall outside fine...like it was said the elements take care of most everything.

Climbing barefoot inside is gross and shouldn't be done. I also don't think that someone's personal freedom should encroach on another person's freedom. It shouldn't even be an option strictly because it affects all the gym's customers.

FLAG
By Nick Sullens
From Yosemite/ Weed
Oct 16, 2010
Choss Chasin' wrote:
If you need to ask what's the difference between your foot and a piece of rubber, get a clue! Just in case you cant find a clue I'll lend a quick hand. Here is a tiny list of things that a foot can have: Atheletes foot Bunions Warts Corns Ringworm Here is what a piece of rubber can have: Dirt Either keep your shoes on or climb where no one else will.


For one, Corns and bunions aren't contagious. Additionally, I would argue that most people's hands carry more microbes that their feet, think of how many surfaces you touch each day with your hands compared to your feet. I think your overreacting a touch.

FLAG
By Scott McMahon
From Boulder, CO
Oct 16, 2010
Bocan
Nick Sullens wrote:
For one, Corns and bunions aren't contagious. Additionally, I would argue that most people's hands carry more microbes that their feet, think of how many surfaces you touch each day with your hands compared to your feet. I think your overreacting a touch.


True, but ever hear of athlete's hand? Hand fungus? Anyone ever have really stinky hands due to bacteria? Nope...

FLAG
By Jake D.
From Northeast
Oct 16, 2010
also, Ring worm is a skin infection.. if you have it, it will be all over because it spreads like crazy. ask any wrestler (or athletic trainer like myself). If you have it, you know it and shouldn't be at any gym until you're fully treated.

FLAG
By M Sprague
Administrator
From New England
Oct 16, 2010
Lichen head. Me, with my usual weatherbeaten, lich...
Thnks for the reminder that ringworm and athletes foot are the same. I was thinking of another kind of worm. Doesn't athletes foot thrive in warm most environments. Most gym holds would seem to be a dry environment wouldn't they? I refrain from climbing in the gym bare foot as much as I would like just because I know some people are grossed out by it and some gyms do have explicit rules against it. I can understand and live by that. Usually I would do it the last climb or two of the evening, when everybody is clearing out anyway. I do think for the most part people over react to bare feet though. Since I have started climbing barefoot, I don't think I have had athletes foot at all, or other foot problems, unlike when I kept them in shoes all the time. Only a moron or very inconsiderate person would go to the gym with any infection.

FLAG
By Scott McMahon
From Boulder, CO
Oct 16, 2010
Bocan
M Sprague wrote:
I do think for the most part people over react to bare feet though


Maybe, but I've known some people that I wouldn't be to pumped to climb after them. Their feet are JACKED up...

To me it's like someone putting their bare feet up on a table when you're eating..just not really cool overall. Some people dig feet, some people don't. I just don't really dig some stranger's funk. I know I'm a clean person, but others? Dunno...I don't know where your feet have been before you came to the gym.

But then again if I see you picking your nose and ass I won't want to climb after you either.

FLAG
 
By Erik W
From Bay Area, CA
Oct 16, 2010
North face of Ama Dablam - taken on approach to Ko...
To add some fuel to the fire - several of my lady friends have complained about catching warts on their feet over the past couple years and they each, independently, have attributed it to their yoga classes. It's a real problem, it seems.

FLAG
By JPVallone
Oct 16, 2010
You have no idea where my hands have been and then you put your hands on the same holds I put my hands on, thats gross!

FLAG


Follow replies to this topic? Notify me at the top of web site.
1

Email me.
Page 1 of 4.  1  2  3  4   Next>   Last>>