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Hello Hello Hello

Naomi Guy
boulderer, wife and mum

Naomi Naomi Naomi Naomi Naomi
  


FRB: How did you get into climbing, Naomi?

Naomi: I was introduced to climbing 12 years ago in Bristol, England by a friend who said it would help to rehabilitate my wrist after 4 surgeries to fix my Scaphoid.

FRB: Who were some of your early mentors?

Naomi: Jo Whitford, Gill Lawrence, Catherine Destiville and Bobbi Bensman.

FRB: What brings you to Boulder, Colorado?

Naomi: I got invited to the Newport RI XGames in '96 where I met Liz Grennard. She persuaded me to come to CO to climb. I stayed for a month, climbed around Colorado & met my hubbie Ned 'Red' Harris.

FRB: Who are you sponsored by?

Naomi: Five Ten, Cordless, Pusher, S7 & The wonderful Boulder Rock Club.

FRB: What else do you like to do besides climb?

Naomi: Be a mum & spend fulfilling fun-time with my 20 month old daughter Ruby & Ned, go dancing, Longboard, discover new places around the world as much as possible.

FRB: How often do you climb?

Naomi: I try to climb every other day, though now with daylight saving it is impossible to climb for more than 30 minutes after work before it's dark. I boulder in the gym twice a week & get outside on weekends & occasional mornings or afternoons.

FRB: Who do you climb with usually?

Naomi: A bunch of powerful honed nice ladies with talent, technique grace style & finesse. Robyn, Jen, Trixie, Claire, Keleigh, Simona, Sasha, Emily & Ruby to name but a few.

FRB: Have you done any first ascents?

Naomi: Yes, but not in the Front Range. Crystal Peak, Ibex. I've done some first female ascents in the Front Range and an awesome one at Hound Ears, North Carolina.

FRB: What are some of your favorite moments
          in your climbing career?

Naomi: Autumn afternoons on Gritstone in the UK, Hanging out on a ledge above the sea in Pembroke watching the sunset looking down on the backs of birds as they circle below me. My first trip to Hueco Tanks. Climbing The Leaning Tower in Yosemite with Ned.

FRB: What changes would you like to see
          in the climbing world?

Naomi: I think climbers need to lighten up a bit, stop taking themselves so seriously. I suppose it is an occupation that attracts slightly maladjusted people, so I guess it's to be expected.

FRB: Do you compete?

Naomi: Yes I do since 1991 & I really enjoy it. Especially the after-competition entertainment.

FRB: Where are some of your favorite places
          to climb/boulder?

Naomi: The Boulder Rock Club for indoor stuff. For Bouldering outside: Carter Lake, RMNP & Flagstaff Mountain Parks. Hueco Tanks & Bishop are totally awesome places to boulder too. I really like Gritstone but rarely get the chance to touch it these days. I recently took a trip out to Boone, North Carolina. That place is great, so much good rock. For Trad routes I really like Welsh Limestone, like Pembroke. My favorite sport climbing areas include, Ceuse & The Ardeche, France. Not that I put a harness on much these days. I try to go further afield a couple times a year. Like Ibex, Joe's Valley, The Henry Mountains, and the Minturn Boulders.

FRB: What hard problems have you sent
          in the Front Range?

Naomi: I thought the Kahuna Roof was pretty hard. Maybe it's just me, but it felt as hard to me as when I did Turning Point. Sloper Chief was hard too. Dr. Slutpants, Reach Overhang at Horsetooth, I can't throw myself at a problem repetitively. It gets like a chore & my interest dwindles. I love the satisfaction of succeeding on something 1st try or even 2nd try. Especially if you are with mates who scream encouragement. I like the buzz of being in the 'zone' when you give it your best shot 1st try, your mind & body work in sync. to create a kind of precision instrument.

FRB: Do you have any favorite problems or
          ones that you thought were incredible?

Naomi: Tommy's Arete is one from the Front Range that springs to mind; Nice movement. Kahuna Roof. Also Bernholtz Arete at Crested Butte, a mega classic problem, Surfer Rosa at The Horn.

FRB: What are some things you don't like about
          the Front Range bouldering scene?

Naomi: Not enough really good quality climbing in a concentrated area, with the exception of the BRC which has THE best boulder problems. In fact I was at a BCS event there last week, & some of those problems were stellar, Thanks Guys!

FRB: What direction do you see bouldering going?
          What direction would you like to see it go?

Naomi: Sometimes I think boulderings' popularity will phase out, like the way the hype of sport climbing diminished, but the constant discovery of new stuff everywhere perpetuates more enthusiasm. It is such an adventurous & sociable occupation. Extremely satisfying, with friends & a six pack on a Sunday afternoon after a good days climbing. There's nothing like it! I'd like to see more awareness of the environmental impact bouldering has. I see 8 crashpads squashing the life out of small shrubs & bushes. It's like no one really gives a shit about what state we leaves things in for future generations. Like the morons who manufacture or chisel holds 'cause they can't do a move. Selfish. Is it really worth the time energy & destruction to cut down small trees for a 3 scrappy move girdle traverse of a 4 foot high moss covered piece of shite boulder?

FRB: Why do you think so few women boulder outside?

Naomi: There are far more strong talented women bouldering outside than people realize. Many who consistently burn off most of the guys out there. Robyn, Jen, Simona, Claire & 'The Beast', when she was around. There are a bunch of strong women elsewhere too, Kris Dockstader, Shawna Jacoby, Lisa Hathaway, they & all their friends boulder mostly outside.

FRB: Do you have any projects right now?

Naomi: I was trying Deep Puddle Dynamics, then never got to go back & finish it. I don't have a project for long, I lose interest & have to move on to something new. I've been trying Hollows Way, I need to go there with a big posse' & a bunch of pads, being a Mum I can't afford to bust an ankle again. I'd also like to do The Ineditable up at Independence Pass, one day.

FRB: How do you deal with injuries?

Naomi: Rest is most important, that means NO CLIMBING! Then see someone who's in the know. I got rolfed & for the first time in years could look over my shoulder & down my back. I gained core strength, mobility & my posture improved. I know people rag on that 'new agey' stuff, but there's a ton of climbers who've had it done & say good things about it. Don't climb if you're sore. Sometimes soreness is just your muscles needing gentle stretching. It's easy & feels so much better after just a few minutes a day. If you get to the stage in a bouldering session that you ain't progressing, then quit & take a break, you can only gain from that approach. A lot of people don't rest enough. I also believe in good diet, plenty of oils. Flaxseed or hempseed sprinkled on food is good for the joints. Omega fats. Buffalo or venison is good lean meat. Plenty of fluid is important too, especially while climbing. I think the best way to deal with injuries is to learn & practice the art of injury prevention.

FRB: Well, not all of us can get out to climb when
          we want to. And we have to somewhat train.
          What do you got for secrets, tips? What do
          you recommend?

Naomi: If you can't get out then you must be in the rat race, it's all a matter of choice, you make the decisions so Quit your job & make time for what you love to do. If you can't get out get a Pusher hangboard, they are so friendly on your fingers. Or get some S7 campus rungs & make a campus board. Ned just made me one with an adjustable angle. Make a footboard with a few jibs for a core strength workout & you're money! Stretch too.

FRB: Parting words of wisdom?

Naomi: Remember, it's just a bunch of rocks.

FRB: Thank you for the interview, Naomi.

Naomi: You're welcome.

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