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If you’re looking for the renaissance man of climbing, look no further, Louie Anderson is a known freelance hold shaper, gym owner, routesetter, author, climbing wall designer, and social media community leader. He has written a book on the fundamentals of routesetting, and has authored a guidebook on climbing in the Santa Monica mountains.
As a freelance hold shaper, Louie has greatly influenced the way that holds are imagined. He has shaped for over 20 different climbing hold companies including: ETCH, Climb It, SoIll, Rock Candy, and Kingdom, just to name a few. His shapes can vary from the basic, to the unique, to the realistic; varying in size from tiny, intricate foot holds, to features as big as a small adult.
And if shaping, routesetting, gym owning, putting up FA’s, and authoring guide books and books on routesetting wasn’t enough, Louie Anderson is also an active climbing wall designer and gym builder. He has been a part of the design and build of many of So. California’s gyms and has recently helped with the design and construction of the new Refuge Climbing Center in Las Vegas, set to open in October.
Louie is always seeking to advance climbing in whatever way he can. Just last year he was one of the minds that brought the Kingdom Games to fruition. The Kingdom Games are a new kind of competition, one that test the skills of routesetters. The first emanation of the Kingdom Games happened at Louie’s gym in So. California, The Factory. This year, the routesetteing competition will be held at the Earth Treks Climbing Center in Rockville, Maryland on September 5th and 6th, and will be renamed as the Setter Showdown.
to learn how the Setter Showdown will work, what the judges will be looking for, and everything else Louie, pop in those earbuds and turn up the volume to Episode 7 of Chalk Talk, A Climbing Industry Podcast.
- How he started shaping and setting before climbing gyms existed (think, freeway overpasses).
- The advent of So. Cal’s first climbing gym and what it brought to the community.
- His first hold shapes and how that process has evolved.
- How he creates his shapes from conception to final product.
- How he decides what shapes to sculpt.
- Hold ergonomics
- On the gym bubble and the sustainability of the rapid growth of the climbing industry.
- What he thinks it takes to stand out in a hold market that is saturated.
- The introduction, function, and future of routesetting competitions such as last year’s Kingdom Games and the up coming Setter Showdown in Earth Treks, Maryland.
- And what Louie hopes these setters games can teach us about the routesetting community.
Related Links and Sponsors:
- The Factory Bouldering Gym
- The Setters Showdown Routesetting Competition
- Link to Louie’s book “The Fundamentals of Routesetting”
Thanks for listening and be sure to leave a review for Chalk Talk, A Climbing Industry Podcast on itunes!