Keep Your Joints in Shape while Scaling the Rocks
Living in Billings, we have access to some of the best rock climbing around. Within minutes from just about anywhere in town, you can be on the rimrocks scaling some high quality sandstone. If you’re more inclined, you can head just a couple of hours in almost any direction to get onto limestone or granite.
Rock climbing is a great sport to keep yourself in shape, and exploring the amazing world we have around us. But it can do some serious damage to your joints if you don’t take proper care.
As a chiropractor in Billings, I want to make sure you stay safe out there. So here are a few tips to ensure that you don’t injure yourself.
How to Maintain Proper Rock Climbing Condition
The key to ensuring that you aren’t injured, is to make sure your muscles are in great shape. Strong muscles help ensure proper technique. But it’s not all fingers and forearms.
Cross Training – Training your muscles to work together means you can’t focus on one specific area and ignore the rest. The best climbers out there certainly do a lot of pull-ups, but they also tone the rest of their bodies as well. There’s a reason that the yoga community is so tight with the climbing community: yoga helps to stretch and tone muscles that don’t get used often. Weight training, running, and swimming are also great ways to build muscle that will help with your climbing fitness.
Take a Break – If you’re a climber, you know the appeal of climbing all day, every day. It’s exciting, it’s fun, and it is exercise so it’s good for you, right? Well, not exactly. Just like if you did nothing but bench press all day long you’d hurt yourself, if you do nothing but climb all day long, you’ll hurt yourself. Take some breaks and let your rock climbing muscles and joints recover.
Practice Technique – There are some climbers who struggle to get to the 5.9 or 5.10 level. And others, that don’t look any more fit, that blow through the 12’s and 13’s. What’s the difference? The better climbers aren’t necessarily stronger, they have better technique. They know that when gripping the rock, harder isn’t always better. Learn the right technique, and you can save your joints from serious pain down the road.
What to do if You are Injured
Injuries happen. Sometimes you work too hard, sometimes it’s a fall, sometimes you don’t know what you did, but you got yourself hurt.
When the injuries aren’t terribly serious, as in they’re not broken bones or torn ligaments, it can be tempting to hop back on the rock as quickly as possible. But pain is usually the last indicator to arrive, and the first to leave, when something has gone awry. Don’t base your activity on pain, or lack thereof.
What do you do instead? You give it some time to fully heal. Injury upon injury is when permanent damage happens.
Make an Appointment with a Billings Chiropractor
There are times when your joints are misaligned, and it causes all sorts of problems. A good fall might tweak your back, but even without a fall you are putting a lot of strain on shoulders, elbows, and wrists.
A visit to a chiropractor in Billings will help to keep those joints lined up. Your strong muscles will hold them in place, and ultimately you can enjoy a lot of days on the rock without worrying about doing damage.