13 September 2006

Injuries web resource

I came across climbinginjuries.com, a resource with some quick information on common injuries experienced among climbers. The site has a non serious feel and I wouldn't take it too seriously. The advice is very general and the diagnosis and treatment procedures are only a few of a great many that are out there and very important. For example they don't offer any treatment suggestions for pain centered near the insertion of brachialis - almost certainly the most common pain in climbers elbows (although there is no good data on this as far as I know). One obvious suggestion which in my case has eliminated what was a stubborn dampener on my training for several years was simply to pay my dues and do a little regular antagonist work (in this case press-ups).

I'll have more on climbing injuries in future so stay tuned. In the meantime, remember there are some comprehensive articles on climbing injuries and rehab strategies on my articles page.

9 comments:

shwe said...

Hi Dave,

I really enjoy your website and get a lot from it. I've only had one minor injury so far, a finger tendon strain. However, I suffer from aches and stiff muscles in the upper back and forearms after almost every climb, which can be quite uncomfortable (massages help but are too expensive to have everytime). I warm up and warm down each time as well. Is this a common complaint that something can be done about or is it something I have to put up with?

Thanks
shwe

Dave MacLeod said...

It's not possible to guess whats happening there from so little information but its normal to be stiff (DOMS) after hard sessions. If your issue is not normal muscle aches from hard work then perhaps there is some other injury, condition or poor recovery happening there. You might need to assess whether your warm-up is appropriate for the session you're doing and whether your diet is appropriate to meet your needs. Other possibilites could be poor range of movement, poor sleep, poor climbing technique etc...

somebody said...

Hi dave,

Thanks for taking the time to share your vast experience!

Hmmm, this section of your blog could turn into 'Dave's Diognosis'so just a quick question. Are you going to cover knuckle pain/swelling in future articles? Almost everyone I boulder with suffers with this from time to time, but it prevents me from training more than a couple times a week. Perhaps bad diet, poor technique? I'd like to be able to make a fist again someday.

Thanks

Steve

Dave MacLeod said...

Yes I will share what I know about this, which is limited. I'd also invite any other sports medics reading to contribute! Key triggers for swollen knuckles are:

Not warming up progressively
Poor finger stability and care on crimps, allowing your finger joints to shift about while under high loads (i.e. poor technique).
Using poorly designed or aligned holds.
Poor footwork with feet slipping frequently- shock loading the fingers.
Jumping between crimps without very careful technique
Not varying your climbing enough - angle, hold type, climbing wall, rock type etc..

I'm sure there are more

Dave MacLeod said...

Oh yeah, and not using enough chalk so individual fingers shift under load very slightly.

Mark said...

Hi Dave,

yesterday I was pulling really hard on this two finger shothole pocket and something happened to my finger. So i stopped climbing for the day. There was a little noise and really sharp and intense pain down from my finger into the bottom of my palm. Today it feels sore but as if i could do light climbing, but wouldnt want to pull hard on that hand. Any idea what this would be and what i'm supposed to do about it? I'd just started to be going quite well, and its an awful prospect to have to get weak again while it heals!

Dave MacLeod said...

Hi Mark, It's not possible to tell what the injury is there just from that information but I guess its probably a pulley tear of a flexor unit strain. There are some self help and diagnosis articles on my articles page for pulley injuries which will help you start the process of researching it yourself. Otherwise you should get in touch with a good sports medicine centre to get a scan.

Sean said...

Hi Dave
How are things? Sorry to bother you with another injury question but i cant find what im looking for on the net.
I think I have a flexor unit strain, basically I was pulling off a weird shaped but open handed hold in the gym when I suddenly got a weird sensation running from my ring finger down to the inside of my elbow, I stopped climbing but 'tried' it on a few holds from standing, two finger pockets were sore an felt like the muscle in my forearm was about to burst and it hurts a wee bit in my forearm if I stretch the ring finger backwards, my palm felt a bit weird afterwards aswell.I guess I should be icing it, but the question is where about? palm, finger or inside of elbow? Font in 7 weeks time, im not holding out much hope of a full recovery :-(.
By the way, your book is superb, Ive read it once and now going through it again, easy reading and so much to learn, got me psyched after the xmas slob out for sure! Well done

Cheers

Sean

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