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Fingertip Arthritis
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Jan 26, 2013, 9:32 AM
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Registered: Jan 26, 2013
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Fingertip Arthritis
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I've been climbing on and off for around four years but started getting more serious within the past 8 months-ish. I mainly boulder (anything from V4-V6) mostly indoors and outdoors whenever I can.

I've been doing a ton of super hard crimping lately, and I'm starting to feel the effects on my finger tips (mostly the first digit, both hands). I'll come down from a climb and my fingertips will be throbbing, and after a whole day my fingers are like stiff swollen sausage links. I do have the tendency to crimp everything (because I find it to be easier than open-handing in some situations), and I'm working on stopping that, but on crimpy climbs I don't really have a choice.

I usually climb 5-6 days out of the week, and I've only recently started to feel the painful effects of going hard for so many days in a row. I'm finding ways to work rest days into my schedule. I'm only 15, but could I possibly be developing arthritis? I have a family history of weak joints as well (lucky me). I'd hate to cut my climbing career short because climbing is all I really do, and I have a few comps coming up soon. Any information/advice would be awesome, thanks so much & climb on!

(This post was edited by cb233 on Jan 26, 2013, 9:35 AM)

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Jan 26, 2013, 10:35 AM
Post #2 of 2 (1289 views)

Registered: Sep 9, 2001
Posts: 20939

Re: [cb233] Fingertip Arthritis [In reply to]
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it could be arthritis; I've got a family history of it, and feel it in many of my joints. However, it is more likely that you are just climbing too much.

A few things that I would do:

-cut your climbing down to 3-4 times a week, or every other day with the exception of outside weekend trips.

-do some finger stretches while warming up

-climb EVERYTHING in the gym openhanded, no exceptions. Save closed crimps for those special sends outside.

-if you feel like the pain and stiffness is getting more under control, consider easing into some open-handed hangboard deadhangs.

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