You may not have heard the name Iva Vejmolova before. You've probably seen the 22-year-old Czech in one of the many videos about Adam Ondra. She's the better half of the world's best climber. But she is not just the “woman at Adam's side”, but an ambitious and strong climber herself, who spends as much time as possible on the rock while studying. We spoke to Iva about her life as an athlete and friend of Adam.
The interview was conducted by Jeannine Zubler
How is it for you to be the friend of the world's best climber?
The first year was difficult. I was not used to so much attention. People looked at me climbing and I felt, all expect strong performances on the rock of me. At that time, I climbed 8a +. Today I do not notice it anymore. Maybe because I climb heavy routes or because I just got used to it. But I'm annoyed with people who come with me Adam Taking pictures when we are in a restaurant while eating.
Surely Adam has many admirers?
Oh, I do not know that. I trust AdamThat's why I do not think about it.
Do you climb a lot with Adam? In his movie Silence (LACRUX reported) do you secure it - does it protect you?
Sure, we climb as often as we can together. Mostly on weekends and holidays, since I have to go to university.
What are you doing next to climbing?
I study at the faculty of education. I'm in my second year now, hopefully I'll finish my Master in three years. After that I would like to teach German and English.
Do you come to climbing next to the university?
My university is special, more like a high school. We have a lot of presence time, Monday to Friday, every day about five hours. In addition, we have to write a lot of chores and prepare for the courses. If you are not prepared, send them out.
These are hard customs! Do you even have time to work out during the week?
I train twice a week on the campus board, do pull-ups and endurance training. I also go bouldering twice a week. My training varies, of course, depending on the season.
There's probably no time left for anything but climbing and studying?
Almost not, but I've been teaching kids a kids workout for almost three years now. With some, I simply train, others need a training plan, I put together for them.
Then you also write your own training plans yourself or do you have a coach?
No, I do not have a coach. I took part in the European Cups for the first time with 14 and realized that everyone else is far superior to me. So I started to train systematically. But it took me a few years to realize what made sense.
With Adam, would you have a good coach?
Many people think, Adam would be my coach, but that's not true! He has no time for it and could not help me because he just climbs so much better. In addition, he first started training 2014 specifically.
Then he can not support you at all?
He helps me with the route choice. He knows which routes are mine. This is really cool and saves me a lot of tinkering in arduous routes.
Do you see a lot when Adam is traveling so often and you are studying at university?
He is more at home in the competition season. When he's working on his projects on the rock, he's traveling a lot and we do not see each other that often. But we have found a good way to deal with it.
You climb yourself at the top. What are your biggest achievements in sports climbing so far?
My last season was certainly the most successful. I climbed my first 8c and three 8c routes in three months! In Flatanger I could score two routes with difficulty 8c, which were quite special and did not really fit my climbing style. I am especially proud of this achievement!
Can you already live from climbing?
In the moment not. But I think about it since last season, my level is getting better and better. If I find sponsors, maybe one day I'll be able to climb professionally.
What is so special about the routes in Flatanger?
The routes are in a cave and overhanging. You have to do crazy moves like kneeling. That was all new to me. I'm used to lime and had to get used to the granite and the harsh conditions.
You climb 8c routes you do not have - have you ever thought of an 9a?
Yes. For the 8c routes I did not need many attempts. An 8c + is certainly possible this year. If I do not hurt myself and continue to train, an 9a would be conceivable.
We will certainly hear from you! Do you have a special region or area where you really want to climb?
We will often climb in Arco next season. Adam and I have both projects there and I train for the World Championships that will take place in September in Innsbruck.
Climbing is represented at the next Olympic Games. Is Tokyo 2020 a topic for you?
No. Olympia is not an issue for me.
I'm probably an old-school climber (laughs). I just want to climb. These modern boulder problems and crazy gimmicks are not mine.
Have you already been climbing in Switzerland?
We once wanted to climb a whole week in Switzerland. Unfortunately, I got sick and had to drive straight home without even climbing a route.
That means you will come back?
I would love to climb in the Voralpsee area!
Iva in the route Glutaman in the area Moravian Karst