Wednesday, August 11, 2004

Here are some tips to aid climbing

Work to avoid injuries:

Get adequate rest between climbs.

Decrease training if in pain.

Take measures to avoid acute inflammation.

Restore flexibility and movement.

Increase strength.

Tape and splint joints as recommended by a health professional.

Strength and flexibility training:

Warm up.

Do easier routes and larger holds early in climbing season.

Do a variety of exercises at each session as opposed to doing one specific activity.

Avoid over training. Repetitive training can lead to micro-trauma, which can result in a chronic injury.

Progressively increase intensity, duration and frequency of training.

Heekin?s recommended exercises:

Place a rubber band around the fingers below the last joint and spread the fingers apart.

Use a ?Gripmaster,? which has springs on individual pads that are squeezed for strength building.

Use a hang board, which is a tool specific to rock climbing training that is like a chinning bar, but with a variety of holds on it that simulate several different types of climbing holds. It has jugs, in-cut holds for chin ups, slop-ers, rounded holes good for building up contact strength and crimps.

The crimp hold is the one that may cause the most finger injuries, but is the most powerful grip for a climber. The holds are very small so the tips of the fingers are placed on them flexed in order to get more power and pre-vent hyperextension. Peter Heekin advises climbers to hang from these crimps open handed to get the best crimping strength as opposed to trying to gain strength only by pulling on a crimp grip.

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