A report by Alex Honnold on his visits to indoor gyms in Poland. This quote struck me:
reminded me more of small training centers. Systems boards, steep bouldering caves, campus boards, and a few weights all crammed into a dark, extremely dusty little nook. Not really a place to play, but certainly a place to get extremely strong. And it was obvious from watching all the regulars climbing that they take it fairly seriously.
…the thing that Polish gyms showed me was that the quality of the training facility is much less important than the quality of the person training. They didn't need great gyms, or new holds, or clean facilities.”
This might explain the domination of climbing competitions by European climbers.
I like his description of how friendly the climbers were to each other. And how new climbers to the gym were welcomed. I haven’t seen that here.
“Anyone entering the climbing areas would shake hands with everyone who was already there, even if they didn't know each other. So each time someone entered the bouldering area they would come around and shake hands with everyone. I never quite understood the idea but it gave the gym a very nice family feeling.”