May climbing be bad for my fingers?

Ergonomics and Posture for Classical Guitarists, Aches and Pains, Injuries, etc...
Simon Volmer

May climbing be bad for my fingers?

Post by Simon Volmer » Fri Jul 31, 2015 3:11 am

I boulder (climbing at jump altitude), which needs a lot of finger strength, once or twice a week. Sometimes my fingers seem a bit static and less fluid several hours afterwards.
Does anyone know, if climbing might affect my fingers on the long term?

ronjazz
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Re: May climbing be bad for my fingers?

Post by ronjazz » Sun Aug 02, 2015 4:57 pm

It seems that you would not be doing your technique any favors, and certainly your nails would suffer. On the other hand, if you're not a pro, perhaps it shouldn't matter. You might want to develop a good warm-up routine with stretches after climbing before you practice or play.
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Re: May climbing be bad for my fingers?

Post by Simon Volmer » Thu Aug 27, 2015 8:19 am

I'm certainly not a pro when it comes to CG, but I'm working towards it in regards of jazz guitar.

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Denian Arcoleo
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Re: May climbing be bad for my fingers?

Post by Denian Arcoleo » Thu Aug 27, 2015 8:21 am

I think climbing would be great for your fingers, not so great for your nails.

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Re: May climbing be bad for my fingers?

Post by Simon Volmer » Fri Sep 04, 2015 9:21 am

I suppose, then i'll keep on doing it, because my focus lays on playing the electritcal guitar ;)
I started using nail oil on my right hand nails and they haven't broken ever since, though i went climbing twice a week
Also i seem to get more fluid on the CG, i suppose the non-fluidness is more related, to not playing classical for years than to climbing, but i'll keep watching it briefly!
Tanks for advice Ron and Denian :)

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Denian Arcoleo
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Re: May climbing be bad for my fingers?

Post by Denian Arcoleo » Fri Sep 04, 2015 11:22 am

sorry, posted in wrong forum!

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Re: May climbing be bad for my fingers?

Post by Bill B » Fri Sep 04, 2015 12:23 pm

I used to do this also, although I was never a very good climber. I quit because it made playing difficult and tore up my nails. I felt somehow sluggish after a lot of climbing. My fingers had that slow, "running in a nightmare where you can't run" kind of feeling. For me it was one or the other.
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oski79
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Re: May climbing be bad for my fingers?

Post by oski79 » Fri Sep 04, 2015 1:25 pm

Based on Kevin Jorgensen's hands after his historic summit of El Capitan...

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Re: May climbing be bad for my fingers?

Post by Briant » Fri Sep 04, 2015 1:41 pm

I was trying to imagine a worse sport than climbing for a classical guitarist, then i remembered that Julian Bream was a keen cricketer !

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Re: May climbing be bad for my fingers?

Post by Guero » Fri Sep 04, 2015 10:46 pm

Hi Simon!

Why should some extra finger strength be bad for playing guitar :)
A permanent threat for climbers is the rapture of an annular pulley ("Ringband")
I don't have any problems playing CG after climbing, it may even be a usefull stretching unit for the fingers!
(although I'm not sure if i could play fluently and effortless after having climbed El Capitán..)

Greetings, Güero.

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Re: May climbing be bad for my fingers?

Post by Emil Krasich » Fri Sep 04, 2015 10:56 pm

I'd be more concerned about possible arthritic issues in the long term with rock climbing. I'm dealing with early arthritis (in the right hand i m a)from lifting weights and various paddling sports. From what I understand, rock climbing is even more damaging in this respect. Proper massage and stretching will likely slow damage in addition to icing and heating.

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Re: May climbing be bad for my fingers?

Post by aokoye » Mon Sep 07, 2015 12:11 am

Climbing would be great for your finger strength and horrible for your nails. By "horrible for your nails" I mean you'll essentially be filling them in the process of climbing. When I was climbing competitively (this was years and years ago) I essentially never clipped my fingernails because I was climbing 4ish days a week.

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Re: May climbing be bad for my fingers?

Post by Scot Tremblay » Mon Sep 07, 2015 1:37 am

I rock climbed for a number of years. Working up finger strength was great for playing but I found keeping nails was a bit of a problem. I keep short nails anyways and learned to grip things (holds) differently so it wasn't all that bad. There was a big improvement in the condition of my nails when I switched from rock climbing to mountaineering...mountaineering is just slow trudging up a really high mountain, often on glaciers and snowy fields. Don't have to worry about breaking a nail most of the time but the threat of freezing your fingers off does come up once in a while... :shock: Lots of my more obsessive climbing partners were missing fingers, ear bits, nose ends and most often toes (which is great because you can buy smaller child size boots, they cost less...). OK, so I exaggerate for dramatic effect but they really were missing toes, facial bits and the odd finger tip.

It's all a trade off in the pursuit of your Rocky Mountain High, I guess...nails or fingers...Hmmm, which is expendable, which do I really need...? :reflechir:
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Re: May climbing be bad for my fingers?

Post by Tricky Fish » Mon Sep 07, 2015 8:39 am

The author of one of my sheet music compilations (can't remember the name) listed climbing as a hobby in the intro to the book. He is / was playing at very high levels.

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