For many enthusiasts, the potential danger involved in rock climbing contributes to their enjoyment of the sport. After all, the adrenaline rush you receive when you finish a huge wall or make it to the top of a steep face is its own reward. However, just because you’re seeking thrills doesn’t mean you necessarily want to end up injured as a result. Your body is vulnerable to serious injury while rock climbing, especially if you routinely engage in this hobby. Educating yourself about the biggest potential injury risks can’t help you keep yourself safe while climbing.
Your shoulders are at risk when you climb
The shoulders and arms are the most vulnerable for climbers. There is the potential to suffer subluxation of the shoulders, which is a partial dislocation. Making big moves while bouldering is a common risk factor for subluxation of the shoulders. Overextending a joint can increase your risk. You will likely need medical assistance if a subluxation or constant shoulder pain and inflammation is the outcome of a rock climbing exercise.
Similarly, it is possible to tear your rotator cuff. This injury involves tearing the muscle in your shoulder as opposed to dislocating the joint. Symptoms include both aching and sharp pains, as well as weakness in the affected arm or difficulty lifting it. Minor rotator cuff tears only require rest. More severe injuries may require physical therapy and ongoing medical care.
Protect your hands and fingers from injury
Three of the five most common injuries rock climbers experience involve the hands. That makes sense since the human hand has many tiny bones, as well as an intricate system of muscles, tendons, and connective tissue, any of which is vulnerable to potential injury. Standard climbing, as well as bouldering, can place incredible amounts of weight and strain on the hands.
It is possible for you to injure the pulleys that help your tendons move the bones in your fingers. Avoiding very tight spaces, such as finger pockets, is one way to help. If you have already torn a finger pulley, it’s time to take a break. After recovering from the injury, you want to improve your crimp strength to keep each individual finger strong.
Avoid overexertion and strain
Repetitive strain is a major risk for climbers. Both tendonitis and trigger finger are common injuries. Spending too much time on the gym or on a wall can contribute to overexertion and results in injury. Properly warming up, allowing your body adequate recovery time comma and stretching are all important. When it comes to triggering finger, there is no real cure, other than surgery in extreme cases. You will simply have to learn to accommodate the finger and reduce the amount of effort you require of it if you find that the symptoms bother you.
It’s important that you respect your body’s limits when rock climbing. You should also take the time to learn more about protecting your body while engaging in this sport. Rock climbing has enough risks without making mistakes that increase them through the use of poor body mechanics. A little bit of learning and extra effort can go a long way toward avoiding the most common rock climbing injuries.