“Over-gripping, in climbing parlance, means you’re expending more energy than actually needed to hold on. Usually out of fear, the climber clutches the rock with undue force, becoming tense and and burning through her strength reserves.
Despite a surfeit of effort, over-gripping makes the climber less likely to succeed. It is a case of energy misdirected.
Common wisdom has it that if you want something badly enough, if you push hard enough, you will achieve your goals in life, whatever they may be. It’s all about maximum effort, even force. I won’t dispute the importance of motivation and perseverance, but when our energy is not being directly wisely, we’re likely to run into problems. The over-gripping — or “gripped” — climber works against herself and against the very motion that will bring her most efficiently to the next hold.
“Sport climbing is the art of almost letting go,” I heard someone say once …
… A big step to holding more lightly is to overcome your fear.”