Climbing Sensei INC
Justen Sjong

Climbing Coach

As your coach, my job is to listen to your goals, evaluate your current skill set, and then design a training plan tailored just for you. As your technical and mental skills change and improve, I adjust our plan so that you can achieve new goals, perform better, and have more fun. Read more

32 recommendations

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    Google Verified

    absolutely awesome they really are fab just wonderful excellent nice job fast efficient affordable educational happy and easy going.

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    Facebook Verified

    Offers excellent training of the mind and body of the modern climber. Years of expert knowledge is what he has to offer.

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    Google Verified

    Working with Justen is super productive, and worth every minute. Whether you are looking for physical training pointers to improve your performance, or mental scrutiny to figure why in the world you keep falling where you do, any time spent working with Justen is well invested. The mental game gets key at a certain level, and Justen is totally on top of it to guide you thru your next breakthrough. At first it feels like climbing therapy and you don't even know where to put your eyes or how to breath as he is watching every piece of you, and then you realize it is exactly what you need. Fun times, would do it again in a heart beat.

    Recommended for
    Climbing CoachingPerformance ImprovementBreakthrough Climbing
    Pictures attached
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    Facebook Verified

    I needed a new approach to my climbing and training. I started researching the internet and came up with my own training plan. For me this did not work, I was training but with no real structure or plan. I felt like I was training the same power endurance workout. I needed some help.

    I started researching online coaching and found Climbing Sensei. I decided to give it a try and have been very happy with Coach Justen Sjong. After discussing my goals, Justen comes up with a detailed training plan for me. It is great for someone like me who has the motivation to train but doesn’t exactly know how. Justen works with you to adjust your training plan if needed.

    I plan to continue my training with Justen because I am seeing benefits in my climbing abilities. I have also seen gains in my training. The training plans he has developed are different depending on what my goals are and not monotonous. Thanks Coach Sjong!

    Recommended for
    CoachingClimbingRock ClimbingTrainingOnline Coaching
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    LinkedIn Verified

    I highly recommend Justen! Even experienced climbers will benefit from working with Justen to hone their skill, identify key areas for improvement, and build a stronger understanding of their own strengths and weakness (physical, mental, etc). Each coach is unique. Justen brings an incredible wealth of knowledge and skill to coaching based upon years of outdoor climbing and working with all levels of climbers. He's super dedicated to his trainees and able to respond to individual goals and needs. Justen's enthusiasm for you and improvements in your climbing make him an excellent coach.

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    Google Verified

    I have worked with Justen Sjong on several occasions. He has a special skill to nudge people in just the right way to help them reach the next level in their climbing. One of his strongest skills is that he is an active listener, both of verbal and nonverbal communication. He can read people and their climbing.

    Personally, I would try too hard on everything. He taught me how to better relax on the rock. Ironically, I now climber harder and enjoy climbing more!

    I wished I had the opportunity to train with him more.

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    Facebook Verified

    Great communicator and committed to providing support. He will help you on your way to achieve results beyond your current perceptions.

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    Facebook Verified

    He's called Sensei for a reason. The way Justen has broken down the technical, mental and physical aspects of climbing into a system that will make you a better climber is very similar to a martial art. Coaching with him not only allowed me to break out of a nearly decade long plateau and bump my grade, it also showed me how to consistently improve. I can't recommend him enough.

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    Facebook Verified

    I met Justin when I first moved to Boulder in 2012. A novice climber with mainly indoor experience who was eager to advance, I found Justin through a mutual friend who recommended him. We instantly connected and Justin not only offered me the ability to advance quickly in climbing with confidence, skill and finesse but also changed my life in various ways — helping me gain confidence by overcoming obstacles, teaching me to connect my brain to my body movement, trusting my "gut" and learning to let go and "just be" when climbing. I would recommend Justin to anyone from novice to pro, he is truly special as a coach.

    Recommended for
    CoachingIndoor Rock ClimbingOutdoor Rock ClimbingFinesseSkillFitness
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    Facebook Verified

    I've trained with Justen over a few years, but just last year tried out his online Climbing Sensei program. I'll admit, I was pretty skeptical - just how effective could an online training be, particularly from someone who is thousands of miles away.

    I was honestly, pleasantly surprised. I had significant gains, both physically and mentally, and in technique. The workouts were perfect - he incorporated my goals and wants (and my difficult personal schedule), but also held me to a schedule that prevented me from getting injured. To me this alone is impressive - he had me doing some intense workouts, that I thought for sure should "break" me, but sure enough, because of the alternate complementary programming, my body stayed fresh and raring to go.

    The video chats were great, and I was able to upload videos of my workouts so he could critique my technique. After years of kind of sucking at campusing, I finally saw some gains and it was all due to body positioning!

    I worried I'd lose motivation since no one was really "monitoring" me, but the programming was engaging and interesting, and not going to lie, the fear of disappointing "the Sensei" keeps you pushing through. :)

    I'd highly recommend giving this a try.

    Recommended for
    Rock ClimbingPowerPower EnduranceBoulderingTechniqueTrainingMental Training
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    Facebook Verified

    My young teenage climbing son didn't have a climbing team just as he increased his ambition in multiple disparate climbing disciplines --sport climbing, indoor competition climbing, and big wall climbing. I signed him up for the Climbing Sensei's remote training program nearly a year ago and even remotely Justen has been able not only to provide a framework for working towards stretch goals in each area, but perhaps more importantly make my son feel like he has a special pro in his corner. Justen perceives/takes into consideration the whole climber/child and beyond that the whole family/context around the climber-child. He has been instrumental both in helping my son reach all three of his stretch goals and retaining his sense of fun and love of climbing.

    Recommended for
    Rock Climbing CoachingSports PerformanceClimbing Training
    Pictures attached
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    Facebook Verified

    If you've ever wanted to reach a big big goal in life, you understand that having a skilled coach will not only help you get there, but speed up the process. Justen is a great asset to have in your corner if you are just starting out, coming off a break, or ready to take on the impossible. Personally I will work with him for as long as it takes, and have found the sessions I have had with him genuinely help me address my weaknesses, physical and mental. I'm seen improvement in myself after EVERY SINGLE session! I'm psyched to have a coach like him locally who I can work with to finally attack all my "unfinished projects" and I believe working with him along with hard work and determination will get me there!

    Recommended for
    CoachingRock Climbing CoachingSports Performance Coaching
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    Google Verified

    I've been working with Justen online for over a year now. Prior to working with him my training was largely unstructured and my climbing had plateaued. i have experienced incremental gains over the last year and feel both strong and resilient. His programming has been just what I needed and the progress I've made has helped fuel my psyche and motivation.

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    Facebook Verified

    I worked with Justin, through the Climb a Grade Harder program he developed. I've had a few coaches throughout my many 'athletic lives', and even though it was a remote coaching relationship, I found the program exemplary. The design and obvious thought that went into it's development, an the way it was laid out, allowed me to experience significant gains. Best thing, I'm still reaping the rewards from what I learned in the program, and was able to carry forward.

    Recommended for
    Coaching.
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    Google Verified

    I've worked with Coach Sjong for just under a year, remotely. I had been at a plateau for a few years, and with his help, I easily improved by 2 letter grades. This was despite an injury that I incurred during training, and to me, that's critical. He immediately understood the type of injury I had, and coached me through a phase of recovery which was longer than I would have done myself, but had me coming back stronger still. His training programming is excellent, and when combined with video and skype calls, he proves he has a knack for communicating the nuances of climbing technique and how to improve it.

    Recommended for
    Climbing Training And Coaching
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    Facebook Verified

    I've known Justen for years now. He's always been an approachable, knowledgeable, and relatable friend (and coach). Before working with Justen, I was always skeptical of climbing coaching. Climbing is such an individual sport where everyone has their own style, training methodology, and goals. Justen took the time to get to know me as a person before we started training together. Quickly, he was able to identify some key weaknesses in my own climbing that I had always perceived as strengths. This type of insight has allowed me to approach my movement and my training much differently. Through the years, I've learned about the attributes that make great athletes, themes in my own climbing that hold me back, and strengths I never knew I had. I'd recommend working with Justen for anyone wanting to take their climbing to the next level.

    Recommended for
    Coaching
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    Google Verified

    Justen is a truly masterful climbing coach who has a rare gift at reading human behavior and identifying its underlying sources. I trained with him numerous times over the past several years, both in group and private settings. His insight was invaluable and at times downright uncanny. It's as if he is able to peer into the inner workings of your mind! A "Climbing Sensei" indeed!

    Recommended for
    Coaching
    Pictures attached
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    Google Verified

    I've been training with Justen for only two months and the two things that caught my attention right away were organization and responsiveness. All routines are very well explained and organized and every time I needed him the response came the same day! Other than that, the video analysis that he sent me was extremely helpful. He was able to see and correct things that I've always done but that I had never thought were a problem.

    Recommended for
    Coaching
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    Facebook Verified

    Having a private session with Justen was the best thing I could have done for my climbing. That one hour of coaching has given me months of objectives to work on and improve my climbing. I can't recommend him enough.

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    Facebook Verified

    I recommend Justen because he is a personable and skilled coach. When I worked with him, he was very in tune with me as a person and as a climber and thus his lessons are helpful in both realms. Justen is honest and direct and also reasonable and sensitive. He uses a variety of tools, anecdotes, comparisons and techniques to bring his points across. Justen is a great guy and I have taken away a lot of great insight working with him.

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    Facebook Verified

    Justen excels at reading people and finding areas they can improve! I threw him for a curve ball with having arthritis and limited range of motion and he helped me figure out how to relax in between hard sections and "belly breath" so I can keep my heart rate down and climb better which helped a lot! Definitely glad I did the one on one session with him! I will be practicing what he taught me and scheduling follow up sessions to help learn other things I can do to improve my climbing. Thanks Justen!

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    Google Verified

    Justen seems to really love what he does and offers coaching and support that goes well beyond climbing. He understands the busy-ness of life and works with you and your schedule to adapt a program unique to you.

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    Facebook Google Verified

    He took me from beginner to being able to train myself and even help with the coaching of another high school team, instructing them on how to effectively do drills like 4x4s, circuits, and even some hang boarding without injuring themselves or not taking full advantage of the training potential.

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    Facebook Verified

    Very good for communication and immediately made me feel comfortable. His experience alone makes him a great recommendation

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    Google Verified

    I highly recommend hmm. He has a great personality and his tips totally improved my climbing

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    Facebook Verified

    Sjong knows a lot about climbing, a lot about coaching, and most importantly, he knows how to relate the two and teach climbers about how they are climbing and how they can perform better.


    Thanks for taking the time!
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    Facebook Google LinkedIn Verified

    Justen is a legendary climber. I booked him for a personal training session to review my climbing technique when I was starting to break into 12s and he identified some areas (mostly related to footwork, pacing, and breathing) that really allowed me to push into that grade. He doesn't come cheaply, but time with him is well spent. Cannot recommend him enough if you're in Boulder or he's visiting a climbing gym in your area (he often goes to the Bay Area, which is where I met him).

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    Jeffery Arthur

    Added by Climbing Sensei INC

    A friend stated the following to another friend. “I don't know what exactly Jeff is doing differently, but I've climbed with him for a very long time and I can tell you guys this he's climbing better than he's ever climbed. He's definitely gotten stronger, but mainly he's less shaky and a lot more comfortable and smoother on the rock."

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    Quy Le

    Added by Climbing Sensei INC

    I recently got my first V7 outdoors after a handful of goes. Might've been a soft V7. I'm unsure and judging whether grades are precise have never been intuitive to me.

    I'm also close to a couple V8's this season in Squamish (Mosquito Incubator and Gibb's Cave). Squamish has definitely opened up in terms of the sheer amount of problems I can jump on now. I'm really happy about that.

    Your training pinpointed a lot of my weaknesses (core and pulling through/locking off) and just overall general fitness.

    Thanks Justen for all your help, man. Have a great summer.

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    Santiago Suarez

    Added by Climbing Sensei INC

    Today's my last day here in Boulder until I come back full time in March. I spent the last couple of weeks getting my logistics ready and ticking off some of the climbs I wanted to do before heading out (Bastille, Pear Buttress, Center Route, etc.). In that process, I also managed to do a fair bit of sport climbing in boulder canyon leading to:
    - Redpointing my first 10c
    - Following my first 11
    - Actually getting on a 12. I didn't send, but just the experience was fantastic.

    I can't thank you enough for your coaching earlier this season. I ended up making way more progress than I expected, and your pointers were critical. Keen to pick it up in the spring and see where we can go!

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    Aimee Roseborrough

    Added by Climbing Sensei INC

    Hey Justen-
    I just wanted to write to you and say thanks for all the help with my climbing. I am amazed at what a difference working with you made. I constantly use the tips you gave me every time I climb. I haven’t really gotten to project anything outside, but I send my first gym V7 (I climbed V7 probably about 10 years ago when I used to boulder at Hueco). And I know I’m making moves that I would have written off as too big for me before you taught me how to generate momentum properly. Also, teaching me to disengage even momentarily has helped so much in my sending route!

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    Tim Fulkerson

    Added by Climbing Sensei INC

    My son Ross Fulkerson has worked with Justen on several occasions now, each time before a major youth climbing competition. The results speak for themselves. Ross is an accomplished US National (and likely, within a month, an International climbing athlete). Every time Ross works with Justen, Ross comes away with a much deeper appreciation and awareness of himself - at so many different levels.

    Justen is a master coach. In my experience, great coaches help their athletes appreciate their own particular gifts. Justen is extraordinary at working with athletes who are open, interested and motivated to get to the next level. Justen uses a mixture of questions, athlete self-reflection, various physical drills and exercises, and Justen's very specific and personal awareness and observations in working with his clients. His approach helps his clients build deeper mental awareness, strength, resilience and most importantly, their own joy and passion for climbing.

    Justen helps nurture and cultivate his athlete's own greater awareness of themselves: their strengths, weaknesses, body movement, mental focus and attention, emotional awareness, and competitive performance. In working with Coach Sjong, athletes will begin to understand what motivates them (and what doesn't), where their focus is (and isn't), how to plan out and execute their climbs, and how to find the energy and focus within themselves to go out and give their best on a climb.

    Great coaches enable their athletes to understand their own particular strengths and weaknesses. In Justen's case, he takes the unpolished climbing gemstone in each athlete, and then, facet by facet, he interacts and collaborates with them - and together, Justen and athlete begin the work of polishing each facet of the great climber within.