The 6 Best Wooden Hangboards

The Ultimate Guide
Metolius Prim Rib fingerboard

Metolius
Prime Rib

A no-frills budget hangboard with 3 edge sizes. Budget friendly and ideal for doorframes.

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beastmaker
1000

The undisputed king of hangboards, the Beastmaker allows for diverse training variations.

La Sportiva Solution Review

beastmaker
2000

Similar to the Beastmaker 1000, the 2000 is designed for advanced climbing training and conditioning.

Hangboarding, also known as fingerboarding, is a staple for serious climbing training and is also the perfect piece of kit to complete your home training routine. There are few ways better ways to improve your finger and grip strength than getting your hands one of these bad boys.

If you follow your favorite professional climbers on Instagram, the chances are you have seen them incorporate a hangboarding session in their training programs.

There’s no school like the old school, and the world of climbing training that means treating yourself to a wooden hangboard.

We have been researching and testing some of the best wooden hangboards on the market right now so you don’t have to.

Important: Hangbording can cause strain and injury to your fingers. Make sure you have some solid climbing experience and strength before you start. And don’t forget the stretch!

BEST WOODEN HANGBOARD

Beastmaker 1000

Beastmaker 1000 Wooden Fingerboard

The Beastmaker is known as being one of the best fingerboards on the market, regardless if you are looking for wood or resin fingerboards. Made in Sheffield, UK, each board starts as a solid block of North American tulipwood, and through a combination of machine and handwork, it is made into the finished product.

The creators of Beastmaker are big on sustainability and minimizing their impact on the environment. Each board is made FSC approved wood and their packaging is made from recycled cardboard. They also use renewable energy to power their workshop to ensure they are having a little impact on the environment as possible.

These fingerboards are designed with beginner and intermediate climbers in mind, so the Beastmaster 1000 is ideally suited for climbers who are working on grades between 5c -7a. With a fantastic mixture of crimps, edges, and slopers there are plenty of holds on this compact board that will help develop you into a V10 crusher in no time. The holds on a Beastmaker 1000 are:

  • 2 Jugs
  • 35 Degree Slopers
  • 20 Degree Slopers
  • 1 Very Deep 4 Finger Pocket
  • 2 Deep 4 Finger Pockets
  • 2 Deep 3 Finger Pockets
  • 2 Deep 2 Finger Pockets
  • 2 Medium 4 Finger Pockets
  • 2 Small 4 Finger Pockets (10mm)
  • 2 Medium 2 Finger Pockets
  • 2 Medium 3 Finger Pocket

The huge variety of holds on this board give you unlimited training possibilities and the slopers are a brilliant addition that isn’t found on many wooden hangboards. Another cool feature is that Beastmaker also has its own training app to help you make the most of your board.

We Like

  Allows for quality and varied training
3 different edge sizes
Good for intermediate climbers

We Don’t Like

One of the more expensive hangboards

BEST VALUE HANGBOARD

Metolius Prime Rib

Metolius Prim Rib hangboard

If you are looking for a hangboard that wouldn’t break the bank, the Metolius Prime Rib could be the one for you. Although it doesn’t come with the bells and whistles of the other wooden fingerboards on this list, there’s still here for a sufficient finger workout.

This board consists of three edges:

  • Large (38mm)
  • Medium (23mm) 
  • Small (18mm).

As the board is just a little over 10cm’s it’s the perfect size to hang over a door frame. It also only needs 4 screws to mount, making it an easy set up. At little over $50, you will be hard pressed to find a better training board around this price range.

We Like

  Budget friendly
Perfect for door frames

We Don’t Like

 No jugs or slopers

BEST ADVANCED HANGBOARD

Beastmaker 2000

Beastmaker 2000 hangboard

The other hangboard in the Beastmaster rage is the 2000. At a glance, the 2000 looks similar to the 1000, however on closer inspection, you will notice some subtle differences. That’s is because the Beastmaker 2000 is designed with advanced climbers in mind and was even developed with the input of some of the UK’s best climbers. 

The jugs have been replaced with some heinous 45-degree slopers, and there are also 4 mono pockets scattered around the board. The holds on the Beastmaker 2000 are: 

  • 45 Degree Slopers 
  • 35 Degree Slopers
  • 20 Degree Slopers 
  • Medium 3 Finger Socket
  • Smaller 3 Finger Socket
  • Mouth Jug
  • Big, Little & Incut Rungs
  • Back 2 Pockets 
  • Big, Little & Sloping 2 Finger Pockets
  • Sloping and 1 Pad Monos

We Like

  Super versatile
3 different sloping degrees
Ideal for advanced climbers

We Don’t Like

 Unsuitable for unexperienced climbers

BEST PORTABLE WOODEN HANGBOARD

Awesome Woody Mini

Awesome Woody Mini

I first tried an Awesome Woody Hangboard in a bouldering gym in Brisbane and I was really impressed by the versatility of these little travel hangboards.

If your home is on the road, or you are just looking for a training board that you can take down to your local crag for a warm-up, an Awesome Woody could be the best hangboard for you.

Handmade in Australia by ethically sourced timber, these boards are made by Ross Ferguson, a professional carpenter and climbing fanatic. While Awesome Woodys come in a variety of shapes and sizes, the Mini is the ideal travel companion.

While the Mini certainly doesn’t offer the awesome range of holds as the Beastmaker 1000, there’s still enough crimps and edges to keep things interesting and give you a diverse workout. Each board has the following holds:

  • Top rail, 30 mm rounded open handed in-cut. 
  • 2nd edge, 20 mm rounded flat.
  • 3rd edge 15 mm rounded flat. 
  • Back edge, 12 mm rounded edge. • 2nd row pockets, 
  • 2 x 3 finger pockets 25 mm , 
  • 2 x mono’s 30 mm, 
  • 1 x 2 finger 25 mm. 
  • 3 x hand holes.

The open hand holes are great for building your lock off power and are unique to Awesome Woody’s design.

We Like

  Super portable
Great use of space
Brilliant hanging design

We Don’t Like

 Hard to find and usually sold out

BEST OF THE REST

BuddyBoard Hangboard

BuddyBoard Wooden Hangboard

Danger Buddies might be new to the hangboarding game, but that hasn’t stopped them from knocking it out of the park with the Buddyboard, a fingerboard that’s great for climbers of all abilities.

For starters, this fingerboard is made in Wisconsin using sustainably sourced US hardwood, which we love. But the board itself also boasts a great variety of holds and a bunch of great features. The board boasts the following features:

  • Phone Stand
  • 2 Practise Anchors
  • 2 Jugs
  • 20 Degree Sloper
  • 2 x Small 40 mm Pocket
  • 2 x Small 30mm Pocket
  • 2 x Medium 30mm Pocket
  • 2 x Medium 20mm Edge
  • 1 x Large 35mm Edge
  • 1 x Large 25mm Edge
  • 1 x Large 15mm Edge

I like the variety of edges and pockets the Buddyboard offers, but the reason we think it is one of the best hangboards currently on the market is due to all those awesome extra features.

For example, we really like the built-in phone stand which is ideal for interval training or following along with a timed training program on your phone. 

The practice anchors are also an excellent addition that can add an unlimited amount of versatility to your training, such as counterweighting, practicing clipping, or even assisted one arm exercises.

We Like

The bolt clips allow for more specialized training
The Phone stand

We Don’t Like

 Only one sloper size
No international shipping

BEST OF THE REST

Friction Labs Hangboard

FrictionLabs Hangboard

This might look like a simple budget hangboard but there’s more going on the Friction Labs Hangboard than meets the eye. The most obvious features are the two edges in the middle of the board (20mm and 15mm) but there is also a sneaky 15° sloper and two jugs on the top of the board, which are great additions to this simple hangboard.

What makes this wooden fingerboard unique is its ability to be used as a portable training board as well as a permanently fixed one. It does this by providing you with both a 6mm cord that can hang from a pull-up bar or a tree at the crag as well as 3” screws for mounting to a wall.

Just like BuddyBoard, Friction Labs handmake their fingerboards in the US, however, the Friction Labs board is left unvarnished to help save your skin.

How to choose a hangboard

There are a few things to look out for when finding the best wooden fingerboard. The first thing you will look at are the holds.
Because the purpose of a hangboard is to build finger and grip strength, you should be looking for a board that has a variety of holds, some that you can hold for less than 10 seconds, and others that you aren’t able to hold at all. This allows you to progress once you start to develop your finger strength. 

Another factor to consider is the size and weight of your prospective hangboard. If you are planning on hanging yours above a door frame, you will probably need a board that is less than 20cm high. Wherever you decide to hang yours, make sure your wall is strong enough that it can hold both the weight of the board and you hanging from it.

Fingerboard vs hangboard

Throughout this article we have referred to both finger and hangboards. To set the record straight, fingerboards and hangboards are the same thing and both names are often used interchangeably.  

Rock Rings vs Hangboard

Hangboards aren’t the only option to build forearm strength at home. Rock Rings are also a great option for house ridden rock monkeys looking for climbing-specific training. 

Hangboards, just as the name suggests, are designed for the specific use of hanging on. Despite many climbers also using them for pull-ups, this is not what they are intended for and can actually cause serious injury. 

Rock Rings, on the other hand, use a hanging design (apposed to a mounted one) which allows them to move freely and prevent stress and injury to your joints. 

While hangboarding has been proven to improve your finger strength, Rock Rings will help improve your core strength too. Check out Metolius’ training program here.

Campus board vs Hangboard

As we have already discussed, the goal of hangboard training is to improve finger strength and grip strength. Campus board training is designed to fundamentally improve your explosive power as well as your ability to move between holds under tension and speed.

Wooden Vs Plastic Hangboard

Generally, hangboards are made from two different materials, wood and plastic. There are distinct characteristics and advantages to both of these styles.

If you are looking for the best wooden fingerboard there are a few things you need to know. Wooden hangboards are favoured by many climbers. Wood is favoured by many of the pros because it is a lot smoother, and therefore a lot more gentle on your fingers, which makes it easier to the lack of friction makes them more difficult to hold than their plastic counterparts. 

Another characteristic of a wooden hangboard is that they are often lighter, smaller and often built with a flatter design, making them easier to mount over a door or somewhere similar in your house.
While using a little chalk can be beneficial, be careful to not over chalk as this will make your board slippy.

Plastic hangboards aren’t actually made from plastic, but rather from polyester resin, similar to what you would expect most gym holds to feel like. One of the coolest things about these styles of fingerboards are that they can be made in some unusually shaped molds, giving you a bigger variety of grips, pinches and slopers to play with.