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Training for the New Alpinism: A Manual for the Climber as Athlete by Steve House and Scott Johnston (Patagonia published paperback book) Reviews

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Training for the New Alpinism: A Manual for the Climber as Athlete by Steve House and Scott Johnston (paperback book/also available as an ebook,...

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April 6, 2021

Read this if you want to slay peaks!

Practical and inspiring inspiration with a solidly structured training routine.

January 11, 2017


This book is full of information about your body and how to turn it into a machine. Even for the total beginner; worth the read. There is no information in this book that you won't find interesting and helpful when it comes to fitness,even general fitness (if you don't consider yourself a world-class alpinist).

September 15, 2016

Life Changer

I would really like to congratulate Steve for writing and publishing 'Training for the New Alpinism.' His ability to explain the science and put it into a training system is superb. Reading the book has had a profound effect on me - I would say 'life changing.' I have always been active,but never before 'trained,' and ... Read Morenever before considered myself an athlete. I am now well into my own training plan,and look forward to training as much as climbing. My physical health has vastly improved and this has positive effects on all other aspects of my life (family,work mental/emotional health). I really do have Steve's book to thank for all of this.

September 12, 2015

Base training

Had checked this out at the library and renewed so decided better to just have it on hand. While it's obvious some aspects can be climbing specific, this is great stuff for simply being strong in whatever you do. Bought it for a friend who needs to have a "program" rather than just making it up as you go.

January 10, 2015

Tips from the Best

Although many of the things in this book don't apply to the kind of things I do ( I am not a himalayan climber or super alpinist) I appreciate the insights and information. If Mark Twight and Steve House say things work, they work. Look at the kinds of things they and the other people that have pieces in the book have done. A great read, very ... Read Moreinformative, I will even say inspiring for this 'older' rock climber and occasional mountaineer.

December 17, 2014

Best book on the topic

Steve and Scott, I'm a medical doctor and have studied exercise physiology enthusiastically. This is the most concise, accurate (evidence not just opinion) and easy to understand text that I have read. Very well articulated. I recommend it to everyone that's interested in the topic. Well done!

May 6, 2014

Such a great resource

This book is a great resource for all climbers - and all athletes - who are interested in improving their training, or just simply understanding how training really works. There is something for everyone in this book, from detailed scientific explanations of how muscles function to anecdotes about great climbing adventures. Certainly, if you are a ... Read Moreserious climber then this book is a must-read. The authors combine unique skills and experiences to create a state of the art manual for climbers who want to get serious about their training. It's the type of book you will reach for many times after you finish it.

April 3, 2014


Just what I have been looking for in a training manual for climbing harder.

April 3, 2014

The definitive Work on Alpine Training

I will be honest that as a bit of a skeptic I was put off by the title from the start. 'Training for the New Alpinism' immediately brought to me a flurry of questions such as what is the new alpinisim? Was the old way wrong? Has it changed all of sudden and who gets to redefine what is new? Surely, no one would call Messner the old alpini... Read Morest since so few could repeat his works. Then when I saw who had written the book I knew immediately that both of authors where in a position of authority on the topic. Steve House, who claims not to be a genetically gifted athlete, is considered by many to be one of the greatest American alpinist of our time. House has no shortage of great climbs to his name but his marquee work is 'The Central Pillar' (M5 X, 5.9 WI4) on the Rupal Face of Nagat Parbat (8,126m). For his efforts he and his partner were awarded the coveted Piolet d'Or. Scott Johnston has a well-established career as a climber and World Cup cross-country skier. With his own spectacular resume of climbs in the greater ranges Johnston now coaches many of the country's top athletes. With authorities such as these the skepticism had to be put aside for intriguing dive into the book. Much like the process of training this book requires a fair amount of discipline and commitment. It reads more like an old college science text book rather than the overly simplified light read that you might find in the pages of Climbing or Men's Health. With a deep push into the actual physiology of the physical fitness training it may take multiple rereading of sections to really fully understand and incorporate many of the concepts. This is not a book for the half-hearted two week New Year's resolution crowd. It is for those who are willing to ingrain themselves with commitment towards an actual long term training regime. For those who are up to the challenge what they will find is perhaps the highest level of knowledge and expertise on the topics of training as they apply to the alpine climbing world. House and Johnson drive home what seems to be a mantra of gradually building through purposeful planned training. The book is not a system or gimmick and makes clear the importance of hard work over a great period of time to achieve the optimal results. What they are attempting to do is simply educate the reader on the tried and true methods of training world class athletes and apply them to the realm of alpine climbing. While I found it sometimes overly dense in information the authors made a considerable effort to break up the pages with poignant stories of success and failures from many of the World's top alpinists. Supporting essays from Vince Anderson, Ines Papert, Mark Twight, Caroline George and other greats athletes bring home the importance of the concepts and yet another tier of legitimacy to the book. Everything in the book including the color photography and print quality are reflective into the high level of professionalism that these men put into their work. In the end I came to realize that the 'New' was not just a change in the style in climbing as the author's suggested but a 'new' approach in the way to think about your climbing. While I cannot recommend it for the 'average' lackadaisical climber I can say, for those committed to taking their climbing higher and further, that this book is the definitive work for alpine training. It doesn't matter how great of climber you are, or aren't, if you are serious in your commitment towards furthering your alpine career this is a must own book.

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