GWG wrote: As an example, a leader on a difficult overhanging route is above his last clip, makes a move and comes off, his experienced belayer will provide some slack in order to not slingshot the climber back into the wall. While doing so, he lowers him down to the deck in one smooth motion.
So you're saying that as the leader is falling, the belayer begins to let rope slide through his/her hand, in effect "lowering" the climber, in order to give a soft catch?
You've got to be kidding me. Really, tell me this is a joke. There is absolutely NO WAY that A) that is safe, and B) it should ever be taught or performed by ANYONE.
Why in the hell would it be alright to feed slack out AS SOMEONE IS FALLING? That is the absolute WRONG way to give a soft catch. When you see a climber falling, your immediate action should be to lock off the brake end of the rope. You give a soft catch by jumping slightly at the point in time where the rope becomes taught. As you go up, the climber goes down and their kinetic energy is dissipated via friction in the system. There's probably still a swing in toward the wall, but it won't be a s forceful as a static belay.
I'm sure in the gym they require you to anchor to the floor, which prevents you from giving a proper dynamic belay. So two things need to happen
1) the gym needs to stop forcing people to anchor to the floor. This gives gumbies the impression that they HAVE to anchor always, even outside. Often times, this is incorrect. Yes, gyms do this because their climbs are so short, a dynamic belay would cause the climber to deck from anything other than the anchors, but they should instead, choose to educate climbers how to decide whether to anchor, when to give a soft catch, etc.
2) People need to stop this "feeding slack" horse sh1t.