PLANET GRANITE BLOG

Giving back to the community that makes us who we are is one of our core values and we strive to live that core value throughout the year through fundraising, clean ups, partnerships, and donations of time, access to the gym, and money.

Since the start of our Give Back program in 2010, we have given 1% back to the community and will continue to give back in 2018. We focus on 3 different areas for our donations – climbing, the environment, and under-resourced youth.

Overall, we donated over $105,000 in 2017. We would love to share the stories from some of the organizations that our Giving Back partnered with. Read More…

This year, Planet Granite was lucky enough to be able to donate $5,000 to the SharmaFund, a non-profit who dedicates their time to giving underprivileged kids the experience of rock climbing. Lisa, one of the SharmaFund’s coordinators, shares her experiences with the group:

Planet Granite + SharmaFund from Planet Granite on Vimeo.

In the video, you will see a couple of different groups that we’ve been doing ongoing trips with this fall. One is a middle school group from Bishop (Home Street Middle School), and the other is a middle school group from Big Pine (Big Pine Middle School). You will notice the happy faces of the young climbers, who only recently got introduced to the sport through us. We take them to a few different spots around the Bishop area. In the video are the Fish Slough Boulders and the Happy Boulders. These kids had never been to either spot before.
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Total donated $20,000; total raised $46,000+: 

In October, Planet Granite partnered with the American Safe Climbing Association to raise money to replace bad bolts around the country. Planet Granite has plenty of staff, friends, members, and guests who climb outside and it is one of our main priorities to make sure that those of us who climb outside are using bolts that won’t just come out with a little tug.

How do you know when to trust the gear on which your life depends?

The ASCA gives money to local climbing organizations to help with their efforts to rebolt areas or, through the help of volunteers, the ASCA rebolts areas itself. One of the local California crags that many of us have climbed at is Pinnacles and through the efforts of the Friends of Pinnacles rebolting team, they have replaced quite a few sketchy bolts.

Bruce Hildenbrand is the president of Friends of Pinnacles and has quite a few stories to tell about the rebolting efforts at Pinnacles that get their bolts from the ASCA and with other climbing organizations like the Access Fund.

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Hey there again, PG!

Since my last update, I’ve wrapped up my global tour in China and headed back home to the Bay Area. After spending more than 6 months of the year traveling to over a dozen different countries, it was nice to finally be back home.

During the first several days of being home, I had the opportunity to teach a ninja-based physics course for middle schoolers from Synapse School in Menlo Park. I had been working with the kids remotely via Skype while I was in China, but this was my first time meeting them all in person. We met up at Obstacourse (a newly-opened obstacle gym) and had a great time playing around on the obstacles, analyzing the physics behind the movement, and doing a couple full-course runs as well. I, for one, had a blast and hope the kids enjoyed the experience as well!

While it would have been nice to take a well-deserved rest and recover the minor injury in my right hand,  (keep that in mind for later) my competition schedule said otherwise. The weekend after my return to the Bay, I packed up my bag once again and headed out to Denver for the second stop on the 2017 Wolfpack Ninja Tour.

It had been a while since my last venture into the world of ninja sports, but I was really looking forward to heading out to the event for several reasons: 1) I would get to see all my ninja friends again, 2) it would be a great opportunity to test my climbing training on a ninja course, and 3) the main focus of the event is mostly on providing a positive experience for all the kids in attendance and encouraging them to follow healthy, active lifestyles. Couldn’t ask for much more!

As fate would have it, all the focus that I’d devoted to recovering my right hand’s minor injury ended up backfiring. On only my second qualifying run on the course, I whacked my left hand on one of the obstacles, prompting me to back out of the competition following some aggressive swelling. The swelling died down after the first day, and an initial assessment by some physicians at the event told me that my hand would ‘most likely’ be fine.Read More…

Whether you are a regular day pass user looking to save some money or know someone who is looking to get into climbing, yoga, or fitness, now is that time to get a membership to Planet Granite!

December 1st – December 31st, all Planet Granite locations are offering $0 initiation on new memberships!

Being a member of Planet Granite has a ton of great benefits including:

  • Unlimited access to all Planet Granite locations
    • Unlimited climbing
    • Unlimited Yoga & fitness classes
  • Discounted rates on PG instructional and climbing classes and workshops
  • 10% off any item in PG Gear Shops (excluding already discounted or package items)
  • Guest passes at PG
  • Discounts with vendors (varies depending on season, subscribe to our newsletter for updates!)
  • Access to all Earth Treks locations

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Hello again, PG community!

I’m currently writing this from the final stop on my 2017 global tour: China. The main objectives of this trip were to compete in the final two lead & speed World Cups of the season as well as try out the outdoor climbing at the legendary crag of Yangshuo. While there were many ups and downs along the way, I feel hugely satisfied with my travels both in China and around the world.

Following the World Cup in Edinburgh, I headed down south to do some sightseeing around London with my family. As it was my first time there, it felt obligatory to visit all the touristy stuff the city had to offer, such as the Tower of London, Westminster Abbey, Buckingham Palace, The Sherlock Museum, and, of course, Platform 9¾. The city itself felt magical; each location had a rich history dating back hundreds if not thousands of years, vastly exceeding any historical landmarks in the US. Also, it felt like I got to follow in the footsteps many of my favorite fictional characters and movies that were set or filmed in London 🙂

Also, I didn’t realize it at the time, but I also caused a minor injury to my right thumb while trying to move some of my bags in transit. This would turn out to have larger repercussions later on in the trip.

After finishing my stay in London, I packed my bags and headed off to Shanghai for the competition portion of the trip! This trip was my fourth to China, the other three being for the Youth Olympics in 2014 and two business trips during my internship with Apple in 2016. The entirety of those trips had been contained to major cities, so I was definitely looking forward to getting outside to the natural beauty of Yangshuo after the competitions were over.

Upon arriving in Shanghai, I had a week of training in the city before the first World Cup in Wujiang. The previous times I’d been to Shanghai, I had mostly trained at the Hengyi Climbing Gym, but it had shockingly burned down since my last visits. Forced to find new training facilities, I decided to go check out the brand-new Pongo Bouldering Gym just south of the city center. After some wandering in circles on Google Maps, I finally found it! The gym itself was impressive. Modeled after modern bouldering gyms in Tokyo, this Japanese-inspired creation consisted of a single extended bouldering wall of painted wood and fancy lighting. It turned out to be the perfect training facility for doing some bouldering circuits, essential to World Cup training in lead.Read More…

Hello again PG community!

I am writing this month from an Airbnb in downtown London. We just finished wrapping up the European tour of the World Cup Series and are preparing to head to China next week. Should be exciting!

Over the past month, I have had the opportunity to witness firsthand the first-ever use of the new Olympic format for competitive climbing. This format will be in place in the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo, and also next year at the 2018 Youth Olympic Games in Buenos Aires. The format takes the 3 disciplines of speed, bouldering, and lead, and combines them into a single ‘combined’ event. I got to watch the combined event being tested for the first time at the 2017 Youth World Championships in Innsbruck, Austria.

Before we get into that, however, it’s time to address the elephant in the room. How was the Olympic format decided, you may be wondering? Great question!

Back in 2013, climbing applied (and was initially rejected) to be a new sport in the 2020 Olympic Games. Then, following a revamp of the Olympic sport selection procedure, climbing petitioned again for the 2020 Games. Before climbing was approved, however, a compromise was made to include all 3 disciplines of sport climbing – speed, bouldering, & lead – as a single combined event.

  1. As far as I can tell, the main reasons for this decision were as follows:
  2. There was not enough room in the Olympic schedule to accommodate all 3 disciplines separately,
    the disciplines collectively represented the Olympic motto, (“Faster, higher, stronger” = speed, lead, & bouldering) and
  3. it would be far easier for future Olympic Games (2024 and beyond) to already have all 3 disciplines in the Olympics to transition to separate medal events as well as an overall medal category.

Whew.

Luckily, it worked! After a successful proposal put together by the Japanese Mountaineering Association and positive feedback from the 2014 Youth Olympic Sports Lab, sport climbing was officially approved as a new Olympic sport on August 4th, 2016. One year later, it was also added to the 2018 Youth Olympics agenda. Now, for the first time in our sport’s history, young climbers could fulfill the dream of every athlete on the planet: Representing their country at an Olympic Games.Read More…

 

Who are you? What do you teach? Emphasis on a specific type of yoga?

My name is Charlotte. I am a lover and practitioner of many forms of yoga and have been practicing for almost 20 years. I’m so happy to have recently started teaching yin yoga at the vibrant Planet Granite- SF right underneath the iconic Golden Gate Bridge!

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Hey PG community!

Currently typing this from the cozy mountain town of Innsbruck, Austria. I’m here to train and support the youth climbers competing at the World Championships here over the next two weeks!

Over the course of the previous month, I’ve done a significant amount of travel around Europe for World Cup competitions, otherwise known as being on ‘The Circuit’. Following my trip to the Rocklands, I flew north to compete in the Bouldering World Cup in Munich, Germany, as well as the Lead World Cup in Arco, Italy. Both competitions were excellent learning experiences for me to test where my training is at right now and see what I need to work on for upcoming seasons.

At the first stop in Munich, I had the honor of staying and climbing alongside Kai Lightner, one of the top climbers in the US. We prepared for the competition by trying out some mock competition problems at Boulderwelt München. Most of the problems heavily featured holds shaped by European companies Cheeta and Squadra, which took some getting used to in order to successfully maneuver through them. Hopefully PG can snag some for future World Cup training preparationRead More…

Water bottles. They make the gym (and a lot of other) experiences way more pleasant. Having quick access to water means that you don’t have to drop everything and walk to a water fountain. If you are thirsty, you just break it open and enjoy some delicious hydration.

PG Gear Shops are now home to a new sort of water bottle – the Square by Clean Bottle. We talked to self-appointed, resident water bottle enthusiast Riley on what makes the Square such a good bottle. Here’s what Riley liked about the bottles:Read More…