• Body: Pain Meds vs Sex
  • Appendectomy and Climbing Training
  • Body: Injury Truths
  • Body: BPA and Waterbottles
  • Body: Bouldering for Bone Density
  • Body: Chronic Injury
  • Body: Bouldering for the Bones
  • Body: Antibiotics and Tendon Damage
  • Back

  • Back: Spinal Fracture
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  • Abdomen

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  • Arm

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  • Shoulder: Thoracic Outlet Syndrome
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  • Biceps

    No items found.


  • Elbow: Tennis Elbow
  • Elbow: Medial Tendonosis
  • Elbow: Elbow Pain and Dodgy Elbows
  • Elbow: Tendonosis
  • Elbow: Medial Epicondylosis and Taping
  • Elbow: Tingling and Numbness
  • Elbows: Minimizing Fingerboard Injuries
  • Elbow: Medial Epicondyle Tendonosis
  • Elbow: Stress Fracture
  • Elbow: Pain and Hangboarding
  • Wrist

  • Wrist: Klienbock's Disease
  • Wrist: Ruptured Tendon
  • Snap, Crackle, Wrist
  • Wrist: Fractured Scaphoid
  • Wrist: Instability
  • Hand

  • Fingers: Everything You Need to Know About Finger Stress
  • Hands: Dupuytren's Disease (lump in palm)
  • Hands: Numbness and Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
  • Fingers

  • Fingers: What To Do with a Ruptured Flexor Digitorum Superficialis
  • Fingers: Everything You Need to Know About Finger Stress
  • Fingers: Hyper-extended
  • Fingers: Cysts and Pain
  • Fingers: Cracked Fingertips
  • Fingers: De Quervain's Tenosynovitis
  • Fingers: NSAID Treatment
  • Fingers: Torn A2 Pulley
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  • Fingers: Grip Position and Injury
  • Fingers: Cortisone for Tendon Injuries
  • Fingers: Pinky Finger Pain
  • Fingers: Electrostimulation
  • Hands: Numbness and Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
  • Fingers: Taping Truths
  • Fingers: Flappers
  • Fingers: Trigger-Finger Syndrome
  • Fingers: Torn A3 and A4 Pulleys
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  • Fingers: Arthritis
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  • Leg

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  • America's Best Climbing Area: Red River Gorge
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  • Feet

  • Feet: Broken Foot
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    Sport Climbing Basics

    Fingers: Grip Position and Injury


    Today when bouldering, I went up for a two-finger crimp with the middle and ring finger of my left hand. I'm pretty sure I heard the tiniest pop, then my ring finger went out and I felt pain in very specific spots: A) mild discomfort between the knuckle at the base of the ring finger, and the next knuckle up the finger, B) pain in the palm and C), for the first hour or so there was pain about midway down the forearm that I actually can't duplicate right now.

    Alex | Forum

    I have been documenting this injury for many years and really, I should get off my lazy ass and do some research into what exactly is torn.

    The mechanism is virtually always a training condition known as hyperzealopathy, whereby the climber is unable to recognize imminent injury. The two most common situations are carrying your over-laden shopping bags with one finger or pulling on a hold with one (or two) fingers with the little and/or ring finger tightly curled into the palm.

    SHIZZLE! Not only did it F#%* hurt, but now you can't get it to hurt again. Wassup with that? It won't hurt unless you replicate the tightly curled finger. Try the Dr J Test described in Ask Dr. J issue 172 (archived at

    I recently saw a research paper written by a less lazy practitioner who suggested the pain might be arising from a tear at the insertion of one of a group of small muscles in your palm called lumbricals. Unlike other muscles they attach to corresponding tendons that control flexion and extension of the fingers (rather than two bones). These are subject to severe elongation forces when adjacent fingers are loaded at opposing lengths.

    As you have noted, there is pain in several spots. Your presentation is the stock standard. Being in multiple sites, the pain pattern makes definitive diagnosis a nightmare. I have always assumed the tear to be in the forearm where the flexor tendons come together and attach to the primary flexor muscle, flexor digitorum profundis, and the palm pain was referral. Gosh damn! I am not the repository of all medical wisdom -- it could be the other way around or even involve both sites.

    Frivolous details like location need not impede management. You can pretty much climb as hard as you want if you follow one simple rule: don't split your fingers. Can't control your middle finger? Give them the relaxed bird. The half-crimp, where the middle two fingers are crimping and the corresponding fingers are technically open handing, can also be tetchy. This creates a minor shearing and, depending on the severity of injury, may be aggravating. If you are open-handing and your little finger is not long enough to be on the hold, then be sure not to curl it into your palm. Same with crimping if any fingers can't fit on the edge. Try and stack them under or on top of neighboring fingers. Though a little tricksome, it is better than laying off completely and focusing on your belay technique!


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  • Rock Climbing Injury: Cysts in Fingers
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  • Rock Climbing Injury: Fingers: What To Do with a Ruptured Flexor Digitorum Superficialis
  • Rock Climbing Injury: Fingers: Everything You Need to Know About Finger Stress
  • Rock Climbing Injury: Fingers: Hyper-extended
  • Rock Climbing Injury: Fingers: Cysts and Pain
  • Rock Climbing Injury: Fingers: Cracked Fingertips
  • Rock Climbing Injury: Fingers: De Quervain's Tenosynovitis
  • Rock Climbing Injury: Fingers: NSAID Treatment
  • Rock Climbing Injury: Fingers: Torn A2 Pulley
  • Rock Climbing Injury: Fingers: Trigger Thumb Syndrome
  • Rock Climbing Injury: Fingers: Stiffness, Soreness
  • Rock Climbing Injury: Fingers: Grip Position and Injury
  • Rock Climbing Injury: Fingers: Pinky Finger Pain
  • Rock Climbing Injury: Fingers: Electrostimulation
  • Rock Climbing Injury:Fingers: Cortisone for Tendon Injuries
  • Rock Climbing Injury: Hands: Numbness and Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
  • Rock Climbing Injury: Fingers: Taping Truths
  • Rock Climbing Injury: Fingers: Flappers
  • Rock Climbing Injury: Fingers: Trigger-Finger Syndrome
  • Rock Climbing Injury: Fingers: Torn A3 and A4 Pulleys
  • Rock Climbing Injury: Fingers: Cysts
  • Rock Climbing Injury: Fingers: Arthritis
  • Rock Climbing Injury: Fingers: Numbness
  • Rock Climbing Injury: Fingers: Blown Tendons
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