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Philippe Ribiere

Name: Philippe Ribiere
Born: Martinique, 12.03.1977
Living in: Nîmes (France)
Height: 164cm
Weight: 65kg(winter)/63kg(summer)
Job: No job, I'm just a climber
Began Climbing: 1994
Best Onsight (sport climbing): 6b - Phosphore in Seynes
Best Flash (Sport climbing): I don't flash rope or boulder
Hardest Redpoint: 6c with Sodome and Go More (it's true!)
Best flash (bouldering): 6c Raspa Mama in Can Bouquet (Spain)
Hardest boulder: 6c Saudad , Evralisto in Capelle (France)
Favourite climbing style: The next boulder...
Favourite sport climbing crag: I don't really have a favourite sport climbing crag but I liked Ceuse, Buoux, Russan
Favourite bouldering spot: It's my house : La Capelle. And after, I love Fontainebleau, Ailefroide, Stanage, Annot, Casteljau
Favourite Route: Trella, Kalymnos. So beautiful and at the beginning, the Greeks wondered about me, but after the release of my film, they were nice
Favourite Boulder Problem: ...all of them!
Competition Results: Once I did a Championship in France at Buis les Baronnies in 1995, then 2 comps and then finish
Music: I listen to everything but no Grunge, Metal
Favourite drink: After the championships of Europe with Chamonix, I was invited out in the evening by Petzl and I tested Red Bull-Vodka. Wouah !! Very good but the next morning, my head was sick but I remembered pretty girls. It's was very hot !!!
Favourite meal: A chicks! I love to make them small dishes but basically anything that is put on my plate I'll eat.
Hobby: To paint, write, make movies, sophrology, meditation and to think
Website: -





Philippe Ribiere interview by Daniel Vecchiato © all rights reserved


FreakClimbing interviews are back!
The gang moved to France this time and hanging around met Philippe busy bouldering!

Hey Philippe, I watched the Melloblocco 2005 video and you were hunting for girls' phone numbers! How did your hunting go?
For the moment, nothing to date. But on a misunderstanding, that can function ;o)

Why have you focussed on bouldering recently?
I don't know myself. I like to feel the elements of force related to bouldering. There is a mix of coordination, power and even "spirit" and everything is combined with pleasure and adrenaline. It's a very complicated sensation. Since 11 years, I climb but it's true that I have the sensation that the bouldering gives me more emotions than cliff. It's strange.

How did you start climbing?
I started at a summer camp for teenagers. I wanted to cycle but I did not have a bicycle. My choice thus naturally moved towards the climbing. Why? I still do not know.

How did you get inspiration when you started? What was fascinating you?
At the beginning, it was just an activity like another, and outside after the hours sitting on the bench of school. Unconsciously, my fascination developed during childhood in the Verdon and my eyes had risen towards the rock where men played with the vacuum. Undoubtedly a destiny


Philippe Ribiere (Targasone) - Ph: ©Stefan Denys
Philippe Ribiere bouldering at Targasonne - Ph: ©Stefan Denys

Did you find it particularly challenging? Why?
NO! I understand the question, but the provocation does not provide any information.
I did not choose the climbing to prove my know-how with the common run of people. But, it is true that my place in the world of climbing can make it valid to realize that having a handicap is also a chance. I understand that visually, I can impress the people who do not know the handicap. But it is only visual for my case.

Was it an immediate love?
No. I practiced a long time without emotions. With the experiments related my life, I understood that for a long time I had used the false-excuses to cultivate my hancicap. To date the climbing ones are interesting. So that I just do it. This effect enabled me to open out as everyone else does. I am happier and this indirectly acts on the evolution of my climbing. I feel free in my emotional choices and now, I fell in love with the climbing since last year.

What's the meaning of limits for you?
The body is not only one machine. I consider that the physical force in climbing depends of our mental state. If your mental state is good then the physical side can be good, and vice versa. Limits exist, but if I knew them... I would stop everything. On a purely general basis, the climbing did not really explode in level. So, the total level evolved on boulders and routes. But if I remember correctly, 20 years ago Wolfgang Gullich made us discover the 9a with Action Direct But I do not know the high level so my opinion is of little importance. It is true that the style changed but to finish and to answer your question; yes the limits exist.

How do you cope with your personal differences in climbing?
My work for the recognition of the handicapped in the society is a personal therapy which enables me not to pay attention to my difference too much. Of course, I sometimes have problems on morphological movements but to tell the truth it is not the true problem. It is a question of force and placements. After, it is the head which works.

Tell us your oddest climbing adventure!

Present briefly yourself and your life adventure!
It is a hard question to answer. To tell the truth I don't know yet who I am. But I think of being able to bring certain elements which "define" me even if that corresponds to an egocentric person. And it is so much better if that is not vice. My adventure starts in Martinique with preoccupations with health. It is a polyhandicap which has various malformations : Syndrôme de Rubeinstein. Some 4 months old up to 10 years, the surgical operations followed one another at insane intervals. At 4 years, I was adopted by a large family and followed an education and a normal schooling. I could tell all my life and the emotions but that has already been the subject of a book which I hope will one day be published.


Philippe Ribiere having a bonfire in Ailefroide (France)
Philippe Ribiere having a bonfire in Ailefroide (France)

I know you are promoting climbing with an association you have created…
After the various demonstrations at the Championship of Europe and World in 2002 and 2003, it missed a breath with my claims and the association Handi-Climbs was born. Therefore, I organized a gathering of climbing handicapped and tried to confront the two worlds. Obviously, the climbing handicapped awaited this kind of concept. But in fact, hardest is to count this population because the history of the handicap is very complicated in France. When this taboo ceases, it seems to me that the concerned ones will come more naturally to this event and thus to be able in the future, to create an additional category on the competitions for more harmony. The only difference is to be different and it rests only on us to accept it to live together.

Why do you think that sport and climbing are so important for EVERYBODY?
The important thing is not the sport and the climbing. The important thing is to open out in the various activities which we perceive as limits in our mind!

You told me that you have quite an interesting plan for the next few months! Will you become a gipsy?
To tell the truth, I am full of dreams of climbing. I would like to be able to travel more to experience all the areas and cultures. But to date, I do not have financial means for doing that, except the rock trips which I make with Petzl. I aspire to being a traveller or a gipsy. That depends on the definition of the word. Yes, I want to live for that.



Philippe Ribiere at Tout a Bloc in Alefroid - Ph: ©Stefan Denys
Philippe Ribiere at Tout a Bloc in Ailefroide - Ph: ©Stefan Denys


Is there a place that has a special meaning for you (environment, people, atmosphere)?
No, because I do not function by attachment. While being adopted, I developed an independence and a lucidity in my universe. It is bizarre to say, but the love of people, of an environment or other; it is to learn how to be detached.

What about your passion as a moviemaker?!? What do you like to focus on?
At meetings of climbs, I try to capture the looks which translate the emotions. Then, I try to tell a history or to show the personality of climbing truthfully. I have only made 20 films for the moment, and remain a beginner. Maybe the climbers will like the samples that I gave you.

Do you think that climbing still keeps a freaky-gipsy spirit?
I do not know... But in any case is to learn how to live with oneself to reach the others. After that remains philosophy which man has tried for millenia to get an answer, as far back as when he started to think and speak.

Dreams, plans , projects and more?!?
Life is only one succession of actions caused by our emotions and our desires. After, the destiny makes the remainder. I do not like too much to anticipate my dreams or bus projects sometimes they are not carried out. But... if a pretty girl could call me; that would be brilliant ;o)

Cheeeeeeeeeers Philippe! And... climb hard… smiling!!!
Yes man !! Thank you. And do not forget to remain on the good side of the obscure force!! To be careful!!!
Peace and Love !


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