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Open Crimp = Hanging & Closed Crimp = Moving
  2010-01-07 00:00:00    
Training/Jens: The optimum finger crimp position differs from Hanging and Moving as they involve different loads and body positions. While you grab, start hanging and prepare for the next move, your brain will normally select a more open crimp position compared to your strongest possible more closed position for executing moves. Executing a move means that the load of the crimping angle increases up to failure. As the crimping position opens, most of it's power is gone, i.e. the chain breaks. Sometimes the thumb over the index finger can make a crimp stronger. Different crimping strategy apply for a boulderer who grabs the holds for Moving compared to a route climber who opts for Hanging but during the cruxes should opt gripping position to Moving mode, i.e. a close crimp if possible!
OffLine k_uei
  2010-01-07 12:34:50    
Hi!

I thought that the closed grimp was more injurious, although you make more strength. It's correct?


OnLine Jens Larssen
  2010-01-07 12:51:04    

The general opinion is that closed crimp is more dangerous when it comes to injurious. However, most of the injurous I have hard comes from open crimp or doing one finger open hand moves.

OffLine Mathieu Nicolas
  2010-01-07 13:19:46    
it's totally normal, because the worst injury like you said, come from one finger move, but we cannot consider that one finger is open hand, it should be considered as apart, ... we cannot crimp a one finger pocket...
OffLine Vanlu
  2010-01-07 13:55:13    
I THINK YOU FORGET EXTREME CLOSED CRIMP! Which is not dangerous but very efective in tinny but positive crimps, similar to nail crimping.
OffLine User Deactivated
  2010-01-07 15:19:20    
"The general opinion is that closed crimp is more dangerous when it comes to injurious. However, most of the injurous I have hard comes from open crimp or doing one finger open hand moves."

Jens, you might have missed some facts in specialiced professional litterature while speculatin att home. Have alook at this:

"...there has been a gradual recognition
by some health professionals that certain injuries
are almost exclusive to rock climbers. The
most common of these is “climber’s finger”,
which is damage to the digital flexor tendon
pulley systems, most commonly the A2 pulley
tendon."

Copyed from: http://www.climbing.com.au/Who%20gets%20injured%20in%20the%20gym.pdf

To my knowlegde the pulley system is not commonly damaged using the open hand technique, but I might have missunderstanded something. Can you explain what you mean by saying that close crimping is less lesion prone? Any statistics supporting your theory?


Also have a look at one book you had in the 8a.nu-store, it´s name was "one move too many"

I have also a question regading "your brain will normally select a more open crimp position". Does this come from any serious neurological studies or is it just personal speculation?
OnLine Jens Larssen
  2010-01-07 15:58:27    
Thanks for your info. When it comes to my friends during the last 20 years, they are very seldom injured while doing the close crimp. How does your friend injure their fingers?


OnLine Christian Mengel
  2010-01-07 16:17:06    
Excuse me, making your friends backup for a opinion is a way to maybe support your opinion, not a way of coming to scientific findings. If you look at really strong climbers, including your personal favorite Adam Ondra, guys like Sharma, Woods etc. crimp as few as possible...open hand moving is a question of core tension maintenance and training it...the more you train it, the more your style of climbing will adapt to this. It is a fact that open hand positions are recommended in most training books on the subject and also in nearly all internet pages that refer to gripping positions. Closed crimping increases the danger of cartilage wear out, arthrosis, tendonitis, pulley ruptures and thus should be kept to a minimum. Climbers sometimes have a to make a choice between climbing everything and maintaining their health. If you have been building up crimp strenght for years, then you´re less prone to be injured but even a crimp master like Dave Graham injured himself.
OffLine User Deactivated
  2010-01-07 16:34:02    
Jens
Actually I know only one person who injuried himself using the open hand technique. It was me :-( Most long time climbers I know have injuried pulleys at least once. But it doess not mean too much, personal knowledge in this case can vary a lot and is only valuable as a personal opinion.
OnLine Jens Larssen
  2010-01-07 16:42:41    
The question is if the injure the pulley while doing a closed crimp or in any other position!

I have made a poll in order to get some stats!
OffLine User Deactivated
  2010-01-07 17:08:05    
Interesting that you made a poll and interesting to see the answers, but the tendency so far is a bit strange. The question about finger pockets got most votes but how does people discriminate which structures were injuried? Don´t everybody take finger pockets in an open hand possition? Why then did these climbers answered the option about pockets when it should be open hand?

When confronted with less ambiguous questions it seems that people answer more consistently with the article I mentioned.

To my knowledge it is almost impossible to get an injury in the pulley system while using the open hand techique. Look at this link from Eva lopez´s (most interesting) blog http://4.bp.blogspot.com/_59K4PPk0AuE/Sw0dtnbOQDI/AAAAAAAAA54/i6W9UTpmO_w/s1600/A2+pulley+tear+-+nicroscom_cr.JPG

The pulley system in extended fingers can´t possibly get injuried as it is a structure evilved exclusively for finger flexion. The flexor tendons and other strucutures, though, can get injuried but as the article I mentioned above states this doesn´t seem to happen more often than pulley injuries that necessarily are originated while crimping.

Again the source for the link was this blog: http://eva-lopez.blogspot.com/
OffLine Tye Watkins
  2010-01-07 18:12:10    
How one holds a hold is mostly preference. There IS a specific anatomically correct way to hold every hold, but sometimes this grip position is so weak for a climber that he is better off doing something else. (Like crimping the lip of bad slopers)

Let it be known that you MUST train all grip positions if you want to improve grip strength, and prevent injury. Isometric contraction builds strength in joint angles of 15 degrees.

I would venture to say that most finger injuries are due to climbers flogging themselves on holds that are very high intensity for them, or not warming up properly. It should be pretty much impossible to hurt yourself on a hold if you're properly warmed up, and rested. (Rested both from your last climbing session, and from your last attempts.) Unless of course you are trying to use a hold well beyond your limit, such as throwing to a mono if you have not trained your mono strength.

I would also say that pockets prove the most injurious due to force put on your finger structure. A crimp spreads the force out over more surface area, thus reducing the overall load on your individual tendons and pulleys.

The ONLY time I have hurt my fingers were not warming up properly, and using the same grip position over and over and over without enough rest and variation. Thankfully they weren't too serious, although the last one put me out for around 8 months.

@ Carlos- The last injury I had was from open hand climbing. Injuries from open hand climbing, though unlikely, absolutely occur.


OffLine Jérôme De Boeck
  2010-01-07 18:36:28    
@Carlos: For info it is possible to hurt a pulley on an open hand hold. It happened to me when I was in a training period and I partially torn a pulley (8 weeks rest) on a 100% open crimp with three fingers fully extended on a boulder I was working. I never really explained to myself why did it happen on that hold rather than on one of the many crimps I had been pulling on before that were much more traumatising.
OffLine grubber
  2010-01-07 23:01:28    
@ jéjé: because you're a pussy, that's why!!

XD
OffLine Jérôme De Boeck
  2010-01-08 01:16:40    
awww man ! ;-) (sorry for the intrusion...)
OffLine Tina
  2010-01-08 14:59:37    
Hi! I´ve suffered from a ruptured A2 pulley myself due to closed crimp position. Because o that my surgeon suggested that I shuold relearn to climb with open hand position wich I have. It took me sometime but now I am just starting to understand how to move, and of course not choose the crimperproblems. I´m kind of back to where I was before the accident but on different kind of problems. I think it would be interesting to hear what dr 8a has to say about this, from a professional point of view.