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Tuesday, January 28, 2020

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How to Learn Rock Climbing Holds

Posted: 28 Jan 2020 04:00 PM PST

Whether you're rock climbing indoors or outdoors, it's important to recognize the various types of holds you will encounter. Holds come in a variety of shapes and sizes, and you'll need to learn how to identify each kind so that you can grip it correctly. Once you know the basic hold types, take some time to learn how to use them.


[Edit]Recognizing the Types of Holds

  1. Look for an easy grip to spot jugs. Jugs are holds that you can easily wrap your fingers around. They have a large "positive" (easy to grab) area on top, and are usually wide enough that you can hold them with all 4 of your fingers. Jugs are widely considered to be the easiest hold, and they are the type you will encounter most frequently on beginner climbs.[1]
    Learn Rock Climbing Holds Step 1 Version 2.jpg
  2. Identify undercuts by their downward-facing edges. Undercuts are similar to jugs, except that the positive area is oriented downward.[2] They are also known as underclings.[3]
    Learn Rock Climbing Holds Step 2 Version 2.jpg
    • Undercuts look like upside-down jugs when viewed from below. They tend to have strong positive edges that are easy to grab onto.
  3. Check for a sideways-facing edge to identify sidepulls and gastons. Sidepulls are also similar to jugs, but they are oriented perpendicular to the floor, with the positive grip facing away from you.[4] When the hold is oriented like a sidepull but the positive grip faces toward you, it is called a gaston.[5]
    Learn Rock Climbing Holds Step 3 Version 2.jpg
    • Some sidepulls or gastons have relatively small positive edges, making them more like sideways crimps than jugs.
  4. Recognize crimps by their narrow positive edges. A crimp is a small hold, shaped similarly to a jug but with a much smaller positive edge. It's impossible to fully wrap your fingers around a crimp—the positive edge is so narrow that you can fit only your fingertips on top of it. They are named for the specialized crimp technique that you must use to grab onto them.[6]
    Learn Rock Climbing Holds Step 4 Version 2.jpg
    • Crimps vary in size and shape, with some providing a better gripping surface than others.
  5. Identify a pinch by its paired gripping surfaces. As the name suggests, pinches are holds that are designed to be grasped between your fingers and thumb. They have edges on both sides that you can grip onto.[7]
    Learn Rock Climbing Holds Step 5 Version 2.jpg
    • Pinches can be angled in any direction, so you may have to get creative when using them.
  6. Spot a pocket by looking for holes. Pockets are holds with holes in them that you can insert your fingers into. The holes vary in size and depth, with some of them allowing you to fit all your fingers into the hole and others accommodating only 1 or 2 fingers.[8]
    Learn Rock Climbing Holds Step 6 Version 2.jpg
    • A pocket that only has enough room to hold a single finger is sometimes called a mono.[9]
  7. Check for a rounded surface to identify a sloper. Slopers are some of the most difficult climbing holds because of their lack of lips or edges. They can come in a variety of sizes and shapes, but are typically rounded, with only a rough surface to provide purchase.[10]
    Learn Rock Climbing Holds Step 7 Version 2.jpg
    • While many climbers dislike slopers because they're so hard to grip, others are quite comfortable with them. Your preferences will depend on your personal climbing style.[11]
  8. Look for a large, angular shape to identify a volume. Volumes are smooth-sided, angular protrusions in a rock-climbing wall. They are considered a type of hold in themselves, but often have other holds bolted to them.[12]
    Learn Rock Climbing Holds Step 8 Version 2.jpg
    • Volumes are typically roughly triangular in shape, but they can come in other shapes as well (such as diamonds or trapezoids).

[Edit]Learning to Use Holds

  1. Grab a jug by wrapping your fingers around it. Climbing on jugs is pretty straightforward. Simply curl your 4 fingers around the positive edge of the jug, allowing your thumb to relax. Use as little energy as possible when grabbing the jug so that you can save your strength for harder holds.[13]
    Learn Rock Climbing Holds Step 9 Version 2.jpg
    • On more difficult climbs, jugs offer a good opportunity to stop and rest, shake out your wrists, or adjust your gear.
    • To minimize wear and tear on your hands, try to resist readjusting your grip after you grab a jug.[14]
  2. Pull downwards instead of upwards to use an undercut. Despite their easy gripping surface, undercuts or underclings are challenging because they require a lot of biceps strength. You'll need to get a strong, open-handed grip on the hold and pull down with your arms at the same time that you push up with your feet.[15]
    Learn Rock Climbing Holds Step 10 Version 2.jpg
    • Body position is important when using an undercut. They work best if the hold is positioned at chest level and your feet are planted solidly and relatively close to your upper body.
  3. Execute a sideways pull on a sidepull or gaston. Sidepulls and gastons require you to grip the hold from the side and pull horizontally. The difference is in the orientation of the positive edge. To use one of these holds:
    Learn Rock Climbing Holds Step 11 Version 2.jpg
    • Keep your arm straight and lean away from a sidepull while using your feet to push in the opposite direction. This will keep you balanced while you reach for the next hold.[16]
    • Hold a gaston with your thumb facing downward and push against it as if you were opening a sliding door. Use your feet to oppose the motion and propel you toward your next hold.[17]
  4. Use your fingertips to hold a crimp. Crimps are challenging because of their small positive surface. To use a crimp, you'll need to place the pads of your fingers firmly on the edge and pull up, with your fingers slightly bent. There are 3 basic crimping techniques:[18]
    Learn Rock Climbing Holds Step 12 Version 2.jpg
    • For the open crimp, place your finger pads on the edge of the crimp and keep your fingers extended as much as possible, with your thumb completely relaxed. This crimp is the easiest on your hands, but does not provide much purchase.[19]
    • To perform a half crimp, place your fingertips on the edge and bend your fingers 90° at the second knuckle. This will help you get a better grip, but it also puts slightly more strain on your fingers than an open crimp.
    • To do a full crimp, put your fingertips on the edge of the crimp and bend your knuckles, then position your thumb on top of your fingers. This is the strongest crimp, but it can also place a lot of strain on your hands.
  5. Maximize your surface contact to use a sloper. Since you can't wrap your fingers around a sloper, you have to rely on friction to use them. Place the palms of your hands on the sloper with your fingers close together and following the curve of the surface. Lean in so your forearms are close to the rock and keep your arms straight, then pull yourself up while pushing with your feet.[20]
    Learn Rock Climbing Holds Step 13 Version 2.jpg
    • Try to keep your feet spread out and firmly planted while you're using a sloper.
    • If possible, chalk up your hands before grabbing at a sloper. If your hands are slippery, you'll have a hard time getting the friction you need.
  6. Grip pinches with your thumb and fingers. To use a pinch, squeeze the hold on both sides with your fingers and thumb. The use of the thumb will make your grip more secure. The pinch grip should feel similar to the act of picking up a book by the spine.[21]
    Learn Rock Climbing Holds Step 14 Version 2.jpg
    • The way you use the pinch will depend on how the hold is oriented.[22] For example, if it's horizontal, you can use it much like a jug or crimp. If the pinch is vertical, use it more like a sidepull.
  7. Insert your middle and ring fingers into a pocket. Monos and pockets typically require you to pull yourself up using a small number of fingers (e.g., 1 or 2). Because of this, you risk putting strain on the tendons in your hands.[23] You can minimize the strain by using your strongest fingers, which are the middle and ring fingers for many people.[24]
    Learn Rock Climbing Holds Step 15 Version 2.jpg
    • Try to fit as many fingers into the pocket as you can. You may be able to squeeze more fingers in by stacking one finger on top of another instead of fitting them in side-by-side.
  8. Analyze the route before you climb. If you have some idea of what to expect before you begin to climb, it's easier to plan which holds and grips you will use. Take a look at the climb and try to identify some of the holds that you see. Consider how you'll use them to complete the climb.[25]
    Learn Rock Climbing Holds Step 16 Version 2.jpg
    • For example, if you know ahead of time that your climb will involve an undercut, you can look for good footholds and handholds beneath and above the undercut to help you navigate past this challenging hold.


How to Get the Best Deal Booking a Hotel

Posted: 28 Jan 2020 08:00 AM PST

Hotel prices can change from day to day, and it can be frustrating to try to find the best deal amidst all the available resources. Whether you are planning a trip months in advance or looking for a last-minute booking, you can use online tools to compare rates, as well as talk to the hotel directly to find the best possible price to fit your budget. Finding a good hotel in your price range is possible with a little time and effort.


[Edit]Booking a Room in Advance

  1. Reserve a room in a business hotel to save money. During the summer and on weekends, business hotels are less busy than they are during the week. They may be able to accommodate you at a lower price than traditional hotels because of this.[1]
    Get the Best Deal Booking a Hotel Step 1 Version 4.jpg
    • Checking in on a Thursday or Friday is advantageous because that's when most business travelers will be heading home.
  2. Browse booking sites to find out about potential deals. These sites do some of the legwork for you in that they can compare multiple locations for your booking. Input the dates you will be arriving and leaving, how many people are in your party, and any other amenities you require (workout facilities, internet access, handicap accessibility).[2]
    Get the Best Deal Booking a Hotel Step 2 Version 4.jpg
    • Sites like Kayak, Expedia, and Priceline will give you an overview of the available hotels at your destination.
  3. Check the hotel's website directly. Some hotels promise the best pricing when you book directly through them versus through a booking website. Select the dates you'll be traveling, how many people will be sleeping in the room, and any other details the site asks for. This will show you what pricing looks like so you can compare with other hotels in the area.[3]
    Get the Best Deal Booking a Hotel Step 3 Version 4.jpg
    • If you are unfamiliar with the hotel, look up some reviews to see what other customers have said about the accommodations, cleanliness, and service quality.
  4. Call the hotel directly after you've looked at online pricing offers. If you found an online price for a room cheaper than what is offered on the hotel's website, ask if they are willing to match that price. You can also tell them if you found a less expensive room with a competitor. They may be willing to offer you a different price than what they have listed online in order to secure your business.[4]
    Get the Best Deal Booking a Hotel Step 4 Version 4.jpg
    • This is one of the best ways to get a better deal on pricing.
    • If you are celebrating a special event, like a wedding, anniversary, or birthday, mention this while you are on the phone. You may get a free room upgrade or a special amenities kit.[5]
  5. Ask about event or group discounts. The hotel may offer senior rates, business traveler rates, veteran rates, discounts for booking more than one room or one night at a time, or discounts if you're attending a certain event in the area. The only way to find out is to ask![6]
    Get the Best Deal Booking a Hotel Step 5 Version 4.jpg
  6. Bundle your flight and hotel together. This can sometimes lead to big savings, but it may make it harder to change your reservations if you have something come up last minute. Look for vacation package deals online or use a travel agent to have someone else do the research work for you.[7]
    Get the Best Deal Booking a Hotel Step 6 Version 4.jpg
    • Sites like Travelocity and Orbitz let you input your travel dates, locations, and preferred travel class and will give you a list of paired flights and hotel bookings that you can choose from.
    • Some of these bundles will also include a car rental, which could potentially save you even more money!
  7. Join loyalty programs through the hotel or booking websites. If you prefer to stay at a particular hotel, joining their loyalty program can pay off big time. Most programs guarantee the best pricing for members, free Wi-Fi, or free nights for every so many bookings. Similarly, some booking websites will offer a free night for every 10 nights booked.[8]
    Get the Best Deal Booking a Hotel Step 7 Version 4.jpg
    • If you are going to join a loyalty program, pick 1 and stick with it to ensure you are using all the available discounts.

[Edit]Securing Last Minute Deals

  1. Take advantage of upgrades by booking later in the day. Hotels want to book as many rooms per night as they can, and later in the evening they will have a good idea of how much availability they have. Check booking websites and the hotel's website directly to see how much a room would cost that night and to see if there are any last minute deals.[9]
    Get the Best Deal Booking a Hotel Step 8 Version 3.jpg
    • You can also take advantage of booking someone else's cancelled reservation this way.
    • This option works best if you are traveling for leisure or by yourself for business, rather than if you are attending a big event or conference. Bigger events mean rooms will be booked up early in the season.
  2. Call the concierge directly rather than the 800 reservation number. The people who work at the hotel are more likely to offer you a discount or upgrade. Be friendly and polite, and don't be afraid to ask about getting a better price.[10]
    Get the Best Deal Booking a Hotel Step 9 Version 3.jpg
    • Better yet, go to the hotel directly and talk to someone at the desk. Face to face is often a better way to make a connection with someone if you're asking for a deal.
  3. Stay at a newer hotel to save money. New hotels are looking to get the word out about their hotel and will likely offer discounted prices to drum up more business. You may even be able to book your stay with the manager directly, who can offer a bigger discount.[11]
    Get the Best Deal Booking a Hotel Step 10 Version 3.jpg
    • Stop into these new hotels rather than making a reservation on the phone. This way you can check out the surroundings to make sure they'll meet your expectations.
  4. Redeem credit card points for hotel bookings. Many credit cards offer travel deals or points that can get you a few bookings for free every year. Using these to make a day-of reservation will give you more flexibility in where you stay because you won't be as concerned about your budget.[12]
    Get the Best Deal Booking a Hotel Step 11 Version 3.jpg
    • Cards like Discover and Capital One Venture offer cash back money or bonus points that can be redeemed for hotel stays. Check what discounts your current credit card company can give you.
  5. Bid on a room to get a good deal on a last minute booking. Hotels that have available rooms often place them on booking sites with their lowest acceptable booking price. When you're ready to make a bid, go to a booking site, select your preferred neighborhood and star levels, and the price you're willing to pay. The name of your hotel won't be revealed until your bid is accepted.[13]
    Get the Best Deal Booking a Hotel Step 12 Version 2.jpg
    • You have to be okay with leaving things to chance a little bit, but this can be a great way to get a good room for a good price last minute.
    • Your credit card is charged as soon as your bid is accepted, so you have to be willing to go with the flow to take advantage of this option. You can't change or cancel the reservation.


  • If booking a room ahead of time, check the cancellation policy—many hotels require a partial payment if you cancel 24-48 hours before your reservation.
  • Request a corner room—this will give you more square footage for the same price as other rooms in the hotel.[14]
  • Mention if you are celebrating a special occasion—like a birthday or an anniversary—when booking your room. This might result in a free upgrade or a special amenities kit.



How to Heal Your Tongue After Eating Sour Candy

Posted: 28 Jan 2020 12:00 AM PST

Sour candy is a delicious treat, but due to its highly acidic ingredients, it can leave your tongue feeling sore and uncomfortable when you eat too much.[1] While there's no miracle cure that will instantly get your tongue back to normal, there are several ways that you can ease the discomfort. If you'd prefer to use medicine, try using the recommended dose of over-the-counter benzocaine oral gel. If you'd rather let your tongue heal naturally, there are a few ways you can provide your tongue with some relief.


[Edit]Applying Benzocaine Oral Gel

  1. Identify the spot on your tongue that's hurting the most. Wash your hands and use a clean finger to gently probe your tongue. Try and identify where the acid from the candy was affected your tongue most, so you can accurately apply the topical medicine.[2]
    Heal Your Tongue After Eating Sour Candy Step 1.jpg
    • For instance, if you kept the candy in the center of your tongue until it dissolved, that part of your tongue might be the most sore.
  2. Use a swab to dry the sorest part of your tongue. Take a cotton swab and use it to soak up any saliva on the painful areas of your tongue. If you want, feel free to dry off the entire surface—just be sure to focus on the spot where you plan to apply the gel. As you do this, try not to reach too far back in the mouth with the swab, as this might trigger an unwanted gag reflex.[3]
    Heal Your Tongue After Eating Sour Candy Step 2.jpg
    • Some oral gel packages come with swabs or special applicators.
  3. Apply the product to your tongue with another Q-tip. Dip a new cotton swab into the bottle of benzocaine oral gel. Use short, gentle dabbing motions to apply a thin coat of gel over the sore area. Don't apply too thick of a layer, as this product will soak into your tongue gradually.[4]
    Heal Your Tongue After Eating Sour Candy Step 3.jpg
    • You can find this product at most pharmacies.
  4. Let the medicine dissolve over a period of 6 hours. Don't swallow the medicine—instead, let it soak in your tongue and provide relief. If your tongue is still sore after 6 hours, feel free to apply a thin layer of the gel again. Overall, this medicine can be applied up to 4 times each day.[5]
    Heal Your Tongue After Eating Sour Candy Step 4.jpg
    • If the medicine is swallowed directly, phone a Poison Control Center or medical professional for advice.

[Edit]Soothing Your Tongue

  1. Place a pinch of baking soda on the sore part of your tongue. Lessen the pain naturally by layering your tongue with less than 1 tsp (4.8 g) of baking soda. Focus on the area that's inflamed the most, and wait 2-3 minutes for any painful sensations to go away. After that, feel free to spit out the baking soda.[6]
    Heal Your Tongue After Eating Sour Candy Step 5.jpg
  2. Melt a small chip of ice on your tongue. Take a small piece of ice and set it on the most painful area of your tongue. Don't chew the ice or try to swallow it—instead, let the chip dissolve on your tongue. While this isn't a long-lasting solution, you can find some instant relief from tongue discomfort when you use ice.[7]
    Heal Your Tongue After Eating Sour Candy Step 6.jpg
    • Don't use a huge ice cube for this. Instead, try using a piece of ice that's close to the size of your injury.
  3. Provide some pain relief by gargling a salt water mixture. Dissolve ½ tsp (3 g) of salt into of warm water. Swish the solution around your tongue for several seconds before spitting it out. If you'd prefer, you use ½ tsp (3.5 g) of baking soda instead of salt to make the gargling solution.[8]
    Heal Your Tongue After Eating Sour Candy Step 7.jpg
  4. Reduce your discomfort by taking over-the-counter pain medication (NSAIDs). Use an over-the-counter medication, like ibuprofen or acetaminophen, to treat the pain and inflammation of your sore tongue. Read the bottle to see what the recommended dosage is, and take that exact amount. If the pain persists throughout the day, feel free to take additional doses later on.[9]
    Heal Your Tongue After Eating Sour Candy Step 8.jpg

[Edit]Avoiding Additional Irritation

  1. Try not to eat food that's especially salty, crunchy, or spicy. Keep an eye on your diet over the next several days. While salt and vinegar chips might look tempting, they'll be very painful for your tongue. You also want to steer away from especially spicy food, in addition to salty, crunchy, and sour snacks.[10]
    Heal Your Tongue After Eating Sour Candy Step 9.jpg
    • While your tongue is sore, stay away from extra acidic foods like pickles and citrus fruit.
  2. Don't drink hot beverages that could bother your sore tongue. Try altering your routine so you aren't drinking any hot coffee or tea throughout the day. If you don't want to give up your favorite drinks, switch to iced varieties instead, like iced coffee and iced tea. If you're looking for more variety in your drink menu, consider sipping on a smoothie or milkshake.[11]
    Heal Your Tongue After Eating Sour Candy Step 10.jpg
    • Cold drinks might be overwhelming to your sore tongue. If you're looking to enjoy a glass of water or milk, try drinking it through a straw instead.
  3. Use a soft toothbrush whenever you brush your teeth. Unfortunately, you can't go on strike from brushing your teeth while your tongue is sore. However, you can make the process a lot more soothing and comfortable by using a soft-bristled toothbrush! If you don't have this kind of toothbrush on hand, look in the store for ones that are geared towards kids. Use soft, gentle motions as you brush your teeth, especially when going over the tongue area.[12]
    Heal Your Tongue After Eating Sour Candy Step 11.jpg
    • Don't scrub or irritate your tongue with the brush, as this will only make the pain worse.
  4. Opt for a toothpaste that's labeled sodium lauryl sulphate (SLS)-free. Select a gentler toothpaste to use while your tongue is sore. If you want to take extra action to protect your tongue, switch to a new toothpaste until the soreness is completely gone.[13]
    Heal Your Tongue After Eating Sour Candy Step 12.jpg

[Edit]Things You'll Need

[Edit]Applying Benzocaine Oral Gel

  • Benzocaine oral gel
  • Cotton swabs

[Edit]Soothing Your Tongue

  • ½ tsp (3.5 g) of baking soda
  • Ice
  • ½ tsp (3 g) of salt
  • of warm water
  • NSAIDs (ibuprofen or acetaminophen)

[Edit]Avoiding Extra Irritations

  • Soft toothbrush
  • SLS-free toothpaste


  1. Avoid smoking cigarettes, e-cigarettes, or vaping while your tongue is sore, as the smoke and vapor can irritate your tongue.[14]


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