Udo „udini“ Neumann *1963 The sport science graduate is the author of the standard works Performance Rock Climbing, Der XI. Grad and Lizenz zum Klettern, as well as numerous videos about training, bouldering and climbing in all its varieties. Udo has been bouldering on all continents around the globe since 1982. Since 2009 Udo is also the coach of the German Bouldering Team.
„I’m still aiming to be strong and not just in a physical sense. Most days I try to train my body and mind to be able and ready for anything for as long as possible. What “anything” is though has changed. Not longer am I willing to pull on sharp pockets for just another boulder problem. From time though if the conditions are right and the line is tempting I’m happy that I am not arriving unprepared! Beyond bouldering I hope to also remaining self-sufficient and useful to my loved ones and therefore I’m aiming to always progress in some way to remain resilient, free thinking, confident and humble. That old saying about the brightest flame burning the quickest seems to be sometimes true in bouldering. What use is a person who lasts five years and has to stop training due to bad knees and a broken ankle? How useful is a body that can’t move pain free due to years of neglect and abuse? The journey of bouldering was never meant to be a brilliant flash of spectacle and show, it was always intended to be a lifelong pursuit of improvement and one that doesn’t need to end once the body begins to show signs of age. When exercising with my athletes for example I’m often confronted with the sad truth of not quite being in their league – but stop bouldering? No, not whilst the mind is still young. Not if the soul still seeks adventure, and challenge and play.“
„Trainiere lieber ungewöhnlich“ – Udo Neumann Portrait im DAV Panorama 2/2015
For our Chinese readers, a portrait of Udo – „Climbing Prophet of the time“ in Hong Kong based X-Life magazine (2007).
Udo’s climbing related bio:
born in Cologne (Köln), Germany
started with Track & Field, good in running and jumping, terrible in throwing (Still am!) Early interest in training, knew training plans of most relevant middle and long distance runners by heart at age of ten! Ran 10k in around 38 minutes in this age. Too skinny for sprinting and the middle distances though, often got passed on the last meters by the more developed guys…
switched to whitewater racing. Brutal daily training. One hour of soccer (hey, its Germany!), weight training and than at the end … paddling! Not very sophisticated methods, but very exhausting and toughening! Trips to Alps and Southern France to get used to difficult whitewater.
1977 & 1981
junior German champion in whitewater racing.
started photography (with Darkroom etc!)
Abitur. Started climbing with very basic equipment and knowledge, hiked through Corsica, started studying Sports Science at DSHS Cologne.
first trip to the States, hitchhiked from New York to Boulder / Colorado, climbed lots of classics at Eldorado Canyon, bought car in Boulder, went to Yosemite, tried the Nose and Halfdome, almost killed ourselves numerous times…
Started studying biology.
… first trip to Bleau! Love on first sight!
first trip to the Verdon! Got inspired by Jerry Moffat and Wolfgang Güllich. Met Dale Goddard on later trip to Verdon
first trips „through the iron curtain“ to Saxony in the „German Democratic Republic“, the birthplace of modern sport climbing. Awesome routes on towers! 3 months in California and Mexico. Some Yosemite classics. Second or third ascent of Bikini Whale, 5.12b in Joshua Tree
lots of climbing, all over Europe
more of above! Competed in „Climbing World Championships“ in Troubat / France. Could have been worse, since used to competing. Some guys where just on much higher level climbing wise…
trips to USA (Hueco Tanks, Mt. Lemmon), Mexico and Iceland. Started studying „Movement theatre“
won regional climbing championships, made plans with Dale Goddard to write book
Got MA in sport science. Master thesis „Determining factors of competition climbing“
started writing „Performance Rock Climbing“ with Dale Goddard. Spent 5 months in the States. Onsight climbing up to 5.12c. Photographed cover of „Outside“ magazine.
two month trip to China. Urumtschi to Lanzhou per Bike. Climbed (buildered) on the Great wall of China… Lots of climbing, including first ascents up to 8a.
Performance Rock Climbing finally finished and published by Stackpole books! Edited first film by the same name on a tape based system. Both instant successes. Presentations and workshops in the US and Canada.
Lots of Yosemite classics. Halfdome in a day with Geoff Weigand. Surfing and whitewater trip to Costa Rica.
started German climbing book „Lizenz zum Klettern“, layouting it myself on PC with 20mb of RAM. Moved to Forchheim / Frankenjura.
Video „boulder!“ about, well, bouldering. Filmed in the US, France and Germany. Starring among others Fred Nicole and Markus Bock. Edited it myself on an Apple Mac 7500!
met Klem Loskot. Bouldering and Surfing in the USA and Europe. Started website „www.nadventure.com“ (now „www.udini.com„)
trip to South Africa with Klem and some other friends. Surfed Jeffrey’s Bay!
Finished video „Evolution/Revolution“ Almost drowned surfing in France. Edited extrem kayaking film „boof chicken boof“ for filmmaker Olaf Obsommer. Got interested in kayaking again.
made plans to write book „Der XI. Grad“ with Klem Loskot. Two months in western USA and Mexico. Edited extrem kayaking film „Sickline.“
moved to Austria south of Salzburg to a mountain hut to write book with Klem. Started film „Climbing at the limit of human performance“ about writing the book. Lots of presentations that year. Got into freestyle kayaking. Moved back to Cologne at the end of the year.
shoulder injury from bouldering, needed surgery for the first time in my life. New, completely re-worked edition of „Lizenz zum Klettern.“ Routesetting for national boulder comp. Interviewed by KLETTERN.
two month trip to NZ. Fell in love with a bouldering area again, this time Castle Hill! Went deep water soloing (psicobloc) to Mallorca for the first time. Finished film „Evolution/Revolution 2„, starring Klem, Toni Lamprecht and Bernd Zangerl…
new edition of „Lizenz zum Klettern“ Hot summer, lots of kayaking! Great Bouldering and surfing trip to Brittany / France.
Climbing and bouldering trips to the USA and Turkey. Got more into photography again, publications in major climbing and outdoor magazines.
Started film „VerdonVertigo“ about the biggest Canyon in Europe. Still working on it ☺
two months in NZ, surfing and bouldering, bouldering in Joshua Tree on the way, workshops and presentations in NZ, Iceland and Germany. New english film: „psicobloc 101“ about deep water soloing, starring Chris Sharma and Toni Lamprecht among others.
two months in NZ, surfing and bouldering, Yosemite on the way! Started working on film / multimedia / book project „Climbing Performance de:constructed“ that will be finished end of 2007…
New completely overhauled edition of „Lizenz zum Klettern“ (V3!) Two months in NZ, surfing and bouldering via Hong Kong and Australia!
Trip to Thailand, bouldering on the island „Koh Tao“, Organization of international boulder contest „Bronx Rock Invitational 2008, the future is female“ Documentation of „BAZ!“ the word‘s largest bouldering contest on artificial structures
„Die 2te Lizenz zum Klettern DVD“
Trip to Bali, Indonesia for surfing and climbing. Workshop and presentation for local „Gibbon Climbing Club“
Started working on „Lizenz zum Bouldern“ bouldering book with trips to Austria, CZ, France etc.
Organization of international boulder contest „Bronx Rock Invitational 2009, this time it‘s personal“
Started working as Head Coach Bouldering for the German Alpine Club
„Lizenz zum Bouldern“, instand success, tremendous reviews
German coach for IFSC Boulder World Cups with 7 locations world wide.
My athlete Jule Wurm second at European Championships in Innsbruck.
Produced 7 „Boulder WC 2010 reports“, published on youtube.
New totally overhauled edition of Lizenz zum Klettern
One month trip to Indonesia’s Sumatra to film Orang Utans in their natural habitat. My athlete Jule Wurm third place at the Bouldering World Championships in Arco.
Intense Boulder World Cup season. Bouldering trips to France’s Brittany and Spain’s Santa Gadea among others.
2013 Another exciting Boulder World Cup season with the victory of my athletes Jan Hojer and Jule Wurm as a highlight! Intense working on „the Art and Science of Bouldering“ ebook
2014 published ebook „the Art and Science of Bouldering“ – life stays exciting…