Friday, 26 August 2011

The Classic Mistake by Karen Varga

Having decided that I’m lacking in finger strength, I did a whole whack of internet reading and have come up with a new training programme, which of course incorporates hangboarding. It also dawned on me that I’ve been climbing for 13 years and I don’t think I have ever closed-crimped a grip! All my strength is in the half-crimp position.

Half-crimp position

So about 2 weeks ago I was happily doing my hangboarding session in my favourite half-crimp position, my fingers were nicely warmed up and I had moved onto the Beastmaker small crimp grip, with 6kg weight. I finished my set and this lightbulb lit up in my head saying “hey, don’t forget to train closed-crimp too!”

Next set I cranked my fingers up into the closed-crimp position, gritted down, and managed to pull out 5 reps. It didn’t feel comfortable of course, and during the set my right wrist and forearm got pretty sore so I decided against doing another set.

Closed-crimp position

Lo and behold, the next day my forearm is sore! A session with the physio and it’s confirmed that I’ve strained my thumb tendon, which runs from the thumb all the way down the forearm.

In my moment of non-genius I went from never doing closed-crimp to attempting to do a full set with 6kg weight on the tiniest of crimps … I honestly can’t believe my stupidity. Luckily I have at least learnt how best to handle an injury. This one required a week rest from climbing, lots of icing and compression, and some massage through the forearm to release tight tendons and muscles.

I guess we’re constantly learning :)

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