Saturday, November 7, 2009

Elbow and Shoulder

It started suddenly; tiny and bothersome dull soreness in my elbow and shoulder. I was expecting them. Result of overtraining? Not. Read on.

I read one article by Nicos and then a few more by Dave Mcleod. More I read, there were many things I am doing wrong; my techineques rotten techniques. I did not know how stretch to the elbow! There are two different ligament tears; Golfer's elbow and Tennis elbow. Or they are called tendinosis and tendinitis better known as golfer's elbow and tennis elbow; dull persisting pain or sharp temporary pain. Stretching your elbow is actually stretching your pronator part of your forearm; twist your arm so your thumb points downward, keep twisting, grab it your hand with your other hand, and gently twist more with your other hand. Pronator is top portion of your forearm. Stretching it will stretch elements of your elbow.

How do you prevent? It is said climbing statically generates higher peak stress than dynamic climbing. Dynamic climbing is not the same as dynamos. Dynamic climbing can be described as dead pointing. You have a path and you make moves and letting go at the same time. Here are what pros have to say. Lynn Hill mentions dynamic release or simultaneous releases. She makes a move through releases not catches. Others elaborated in making a habit of stretching your hand after each move and shaking tension out. Some mention letting go high stress point; hand or foot holds to lower stress situation. Keep your hand hold with least amount of force. Instead of crimping, use friction. Instead of using hands at all, let forearm do the work. Bigger, the better.

Let's decipher this hand hold least force business. If you look at your forearm, bottom part is bigger and meatier than top part. If you cock your wrist, you engage the top part and it does not last long. If you relax your wrist, you engage bottom part and it lasts longer. If you don't engage wrist, there is no tension in either parts of your forearm. If you don't engage forearm or wrist, you engage your skeletal structure and shoulder muscle. You can rest and linger. But you can't swing on your shoulder as your shoulder will become unstable. Your next bet is to engage without cocking your wrist. Best yet, you should build "micro shakes" between each move to shake tension and stress out.

One needs to exercise pronator muscles and strengthen forearm. The forearm is just as complicated. Pronator is a set of muscles enabling you to rotate your arm as you have it extended in front and twist your hand. One exercise is to grab a stick and rotate it slowly from side to vertical. Then resist its falling back to side.


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