Sport climbing: With Azum on the way to the Olympics

Example of a block periodisation within a training week in AZUM.

Alex Wydler has been a coach in competitive sport climbing for more than 16 years. In 2005 he started as an U16 coach at the SAC Regional Centre Zurich. After 12 years of successful work in the emerging sport of climbing, he founded his own team for his company:

Alex Wydler GmbH

Alex is creating a new and unique system. His new structures allow him to work more professionally as a coach. With his team, he leads young athletes to World Cups and World Championships in the young Olympic summer sport: sport climbing. He has formed an independent team with great charisma that is now also in demand internationally. But Alex is loyal to the national system in competitive sport. As a coach and consultant, he is heavily involved in Swiss Climbing’s coach training throughout Switzerland.

Alex has created quite a great mission to the outside world: WHY. HOW. WHAT.

You can find out more about this on his homepage:

No one can succeed alone:

Thus, Alex Wydler GmbH stands for cooperation with other inter/national training groups as well as for knowledge transfer in the sport climbing scene in Switzerland. This is a central concern of Alex’s work. He wants to form & promote a culture of exchange and cooperation so that the young athletes can benefit from it.

“It is the people with their dreams that enrich my work.”


What challenges do you have to overcome every day?

Alex: In sport climbing, there are actually three disciplines: bouldering, which requires a lot of maximum strength and explosiveness, lead climbing (difficulty climbing), which requires endurance and good relative strength, and speed climbing, which in turn requires explosiveness and strong legs. When you are now looking after 18 athletes, each of whom competes in a different discipline, you have to rely on a flexible system and you are happy if, despite the flexibility, it also offers a certain rough framework so that you don’t get lost in it.


Paris 2024 is coming up soon, what are the crucial points in the preparation so that your athletes are in top shape on day x?

Alex: Paris 2024 is a bit too early for us. Of course we are trying to qualify, but our long-term goal is the Summer Olympics in Los Angeles, USA 2028. At the moment we are focusing on optimising the environment and training so that we can make significant progress in the coming years.


Do you have any advice for your fellow coaches on how to build a sustainable and successful coaching business?

Alex: Keep it simple! At the Magglingen Coaches’ Conference 2021, the theme was “Reduce to the Max”, and I realised that I make many things too complex and neglect the small, simple things.

And that you always have to add complexity to create value. That’s a fallacy. Nowadays I think differently and try to always focus on the simple, the essential. Of course, I don’t always succeed, but I’m working on it.

“There is a tendency to believe that if something is simple, it cannot have a great impact […].”


What does the exchange of information with your staff look like, so that everyone is constantly improving and the quality of coaching is ensured?

Alex: At the moment I plan the trainings and discuss them with my trainers on site. In addition, we use DISCORD as a communication platform to exchange ideas.

Why did you decide to use a digital tool for coaching?

Alex: I want to spend my time in the climbing gym or in the weight room with the athletes and not at my desk. Today’s tools can help with that, but they can also be distracting and time-consuming. Therefore, I believe that the tools should be simple and actually add value to both the athletes and my work. Therefore, I believe that AZUM offers real added value for the athletes and for my work.

Picture: Coach Alex with Louis Guignard in climbing - strength training

Alex, thank you very much for your detailed answers! We wish you and your athletes all the best for the next competitions.

You can find out more about Alex and his services here.

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