Top 5 tips from the BMC Climbing Injury Symposium

Posted by Peter Burnside on 12/12/2016
Training with an open-hand grip. Photo: Alex Messenger

From fragile fingers to popping pulleys, the BMC Climbing Injury Symposium 2016 was packed full of top tips and cutting edge knowledge. Here's our pick of the event's top five learning points.

1. Climbing is relatively safe!

This is not an excuse to go and start soloing everything, but, although climbers face a broad array of injuries, the risks are small when compared to many other activities.

Indoor sport climbing, for example, results in around 0.02 injuries per 1000 climbing hours. International rugby is at the other end of the scale, with up to 262.5 injuries per 1000 hours. 

WATCH: How to lead a trad route on BMC TV:

2. Young fingers are fragile

That's right, be extremely careful about letting your kids jump on the campus board.

Adolescent climbers have a unique injury profile – growth plate injuries of the finger should not be overlooked. Fracture of the growth plate or surrounding bone accounts for up to 90% of finger injuries in adolescent climbers. 

READ: The BMC's guidance on campus boarding

Paediatrician Isa Schöffl says: "Climbing with undiagnosed finger pain is not acceptable, especially if you are under 18."

3. Protect your pulleys

Pulleys are hands down the winners in finger injuries. They account for around 60% of finger injuries in adult climbers. But, while they are unquestionably the most common, there are around 30 other possible diagnoses to consider.

Professor of musculoskeletal radiology, Waqar Bhatti, explained that the best method to diagnose a finger injury is ultrasound.

WATCH: Finger Injury management on BMC TV

4. Wonky shoulders

It's quite common to for climbers to have imbalances in their shoulder muscles. To help even them out and maintain optimal function, it's often useful to perform direction-specific exercises. You can add these into your warm-up routines or do them with your accessory exercises.

5. Climbing injury comebacks

There's hope if you're injured! And future injuries will be better recovered from if research into injury treatments continues to grow. 

It's been shown that Injured climbers aren't limited by their injuries and current treatments may allow climbers to regain their previous performance. There are many examples of climbers than have come back even stronger than before!

But, while it's possible to reattain your former strength, we must remember that the scope for development of treatments is vast. Further research is required to ensure optimum care for the next generation of climbers.

WATCH: Patience: a film about coming back from injury, illness on BMC TV


Autumn Rocks! 

Bag a bargain this autumn with our fantastic deal on all single-trip BMC Rock Insurance policies. That works out at only £44 for ten days!

We've been insuring climbers like you for over 30 years. That's why all of our policies come with:

  • 24-hour emergency assistance helpline
  • £10 million emergency medical cover
  • £100,000 search, rescue and recovery cover
  • £10,000 personal accident cover
  • £5,000 cancellation cover
  • £2,500 baggage cover
  • No age loading until you're 70

WATCH: BMC Insurance: Get out there

Want to know more? READ: 5 reasons why you need BMC Travel Insurance

*Policy details: £43.98 for 10-day rock insurance valid on all single-trip European Rock cover up to age 69.


« Back

Post a comment Print this article

This article has been read 14943 times

TAGS

Click on the tags to explore more

RELATED ARTICLES

Breaking barriers: The BMC Climbing Injury Symposium 2016
0
Breaking barriers: The BMC Climbing Injury Symposium 2016

Medical professionals united under a common interest in climbing at the BMC Climbing Injury Symposium 2016. In a year when climbing enters the Olympics, growth and development were the key themes; specialist physio Paul Welford reports.
Read more »

The Real3Peaks Challenge: 5 years old
0
The Real3Peaks Challenge: 5 years old

The Real3Peaks Challenge, an event that has removed 1.8 tonnes of litter from popular peaks after the busy summer period, is turning five years old on Saturday 7 October and growing much bigger too! This year, alongside the 'Big 3' peaks, seven additional areas will get deep cleaned too. Find out how to join us and help.
Read more »

The best crags in Europe for family adventures
2
The best crags in Europe for family adventures

It's not easy keeping everyone happy on a family holiday, and a climbing holiday is no different! You need both easy climbs and something for grown-ups, plus plenty of fun stuff to do on days or afternoons off. Sarah Stirling rounds up the best places and crags to go on a family climbing holiday.
Read more »

Post a Comment
Posting as Anonymous Community Standards
3000 characters remaining
Submit
Your comment has been posted below, click here to view it
Comments are currently on | Turn off comments
0

There are currently no comments, why not add your own?

RELATED ARTICLES

Breaking barriers: The BMC Climbing Injury Symposium 2016
0

Medical professionals united under a common interest in climbing at the BMC Climbing Injury Symposium 2016. In a year when climbing enters the Olympics, growth and development were the key themes; specialist physio Paul Welford reports.
Read more »

The Real3Peaks Challenge: 5 years old
0

The Real3Peaks Challenge, an event that has removed 1.8 tonnes of litter from popular peaks after the busy summer period, is turning five years old on Saturday 7 October and growing much bigger too! This year, alongside the 'Big 3' peaks, seven additional areas will get deep cleaned too. Find out how to join us and help.
Read more »

The best crags in Europe for family adventures
2

It's not easy keeping everyone happy on a family holiday, and a climbing holiday is no different! You need both easy climbs and something for grown-ups, plus plenty of fun stuff to do on days or afternoons off. Sarah Stirling rounds up the best places and crags to go on a family climbing holiday.
Read more »

BMC MEMBERSHIP
Join 82,000 BMC members and support British climbing, walking and mountaineering. Membership only £15.72.
Read more »
BMC SHOP
Great range of guidebooks, DVDs, books, calendars and maps.
All with discounts for members.
Read more »
TRAVEL INSURANCE
Get covered with BMC Insurance. Our five policies take you from the beach to Everest.
Read more »