Hakeem Kasban


1. What are your other passions besides climbing?

Before climbing I grew up playing football (soccer) since I was 10 years old and it still very much is something I’m passionate about. I currently play in a competitive amateur league once a week.

2. You do a lot of movement and mobility practices – where did you pick it up?

I was researching on the internet about flexibility and ended up discovering and reading more about mobility. I talked to my osteopath about mobility and movement during a session and he recommended Ido Portal to me. I guess a lot of what I do is really just based on what I find online, especially on social media. The movements are intriguing but I only try them after I feel like I understand what the purpose is. The concepts are very important to the practice. I’d recommend everyone to look up Functional Range Conditioning.

3. How would you say it is helping your climbing and daily life?

I believe my mobility practice has prevented me from having any major injuries, especially in the lower half of my body which also experiences stress from playing football. Climbing wise, having strong yet open hips and legs allows me to move better on the wall and have more confidence in my feet whether it's stepping, toe or heel hooking. In daily life – waking up to a movement routine is highly beneficial – your joints and muscles properly awaken and ready for the day.

4. How is life transitioning between a full- time job and climbing? How do you balance both?

Having a fixed schedule now with my current job makes it easier for me to plan climbing/training sessions. I’m happy getting in about 4 sessions a week, usually 3 weekdays and a Saturday.

5. What is your daily routine like?

Weekdays always start with work. I will either climb or spend time with my girlfriend after. Saturdays are usually spent climbing, and on Sundays visit my mom.

6. You’ve competed in a few World Cups to date – what would your advice be for those who are looking to get in to the circuit?

You have to be fully committed and believe in yourself from the start. If there’s one thing I could change from my past experience, it would definitely be mindset. I went into the circuit thinking it’d just be a good learning experience, having only competed locally in Singapore. Yes I did learn some things, but I also feel like I was a little bit too daunted by the thought of competing against the world’s best. Everyone, even the ‘superstars’, is going to be trying really hard and at maximum mental capacity. You cannot be afraid.

7. Will you go back to competing in the future? What other forms of climbing are you pursuing now?

I have no solid plans for competitions but I might join a few in Singapore or around the region from time to time. I’d love to go back to Japan and take part in The North Face Cup rounds again. I have some loose ideas floating in my head for that now, possibly coupled with trip outdoors as well.

I’m getting into a sport climbing a bit more. I still love bouldering, but I’m enjoying the sustained challenges on lead a lot more now. I think it builds mental toughness and outdoors the views are probably nicer than bouldering, haha!

8. Tell us what your favorite place to climb is (country, area).

I love and look back fondly on my experiences outdoors in Japan, especially in Ogawayama, where I climbed my first V10. I think there are a lot of beautiful places with quality lines in Japan and I’m really looking forward to visit again. Tokoyo in Ena and Hydra in Shiobara is on my list of dream lines.

9. What is it that attracted you to Heavy?

I first saw the brand on Tonde I think, he was wearing a Heavy T-shirt when he was in Singapore setting for a competition and conducting a course for athletes. The simple design quickly caught my interest and the word “Heavy” just resonated with me in a strange, good way.

10. Tell me if you have a impressive story with Heavy?

I personally feel extremely thankful for the unconditional support the brand’s given me. The current line of Iggy shorts and pants are really the best I’ve worn for the hot weather here in Singapore. They are lightweight and cooling and allow for full range of motion and importantly, they add style.

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