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Pain underside forearms
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By Pontoon
From Minneapolis, Minnesota
Jul 7, 2014
A few weeks ago I noticed pain after climbing a very crimpy route where I misread a few moves and pulled harder than needed. I cut the session short because of it. I figured I was just super pumped at the time, but for the following days/weeks, I felt pain on the underside of my forearms, especially the right arm's forearm. It would almost entirely go away, but then strenuous climbing brings it back. The left arm is now almost totally OK, but the right arm is pretty darn sore today. I do have some bruising, but I'm not sure if that's from impact on rocks (not worried if so) or if it's from some sort of injury. Anyone know of an injury that can happen to the underside of the forearm (the palm side) due to hard crimping? I don't think it's from overuse because I think it happened from that one climb. Can I keep climbing or do I need to rest? Maybe climb more gently to let it heal but not stop entirely? If I have to rest, how long?

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By Jon Powell
From LAWRENCEVILLE GEORGIA
Jul 7, 2014
stone depot
Continuing to climb without diagnosing the problem is a terrible idea. You mentioned palm side. Is it close to the palm? If so it may be a tendon issue. If this is the case I would recommend icing, rest and deep tissue massage to promote blood flow. Once you have rested for 2 weeks make sure you stretch before climbing and stay hydrated. Lots of injures happen during the summer because of dehydration. If the problem comes back after resting for 2 weeks see a Dr.

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By sharyl
From Chattanooga, TN
Jul 7, 2014
The soreness and bruising sound almost like a sprain. I'm no expert though. Regardless if it comes back when you climb or do strenuous activity...you need to rest it if it's going to get better. The rocks will still be there when you are healthy again.

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By Pontoon
From Minneapolis, Minnesota
Jul 7, 2014
Here's what I can show with pictures. The red X is where I think I feel the pain. It might be closer to the wrist, though... I can't quite tell. I had a red line (which turned to a bruise the next day) inside the area marked by the blue circle near my wrist. I don't know if it was internal damage from a hard move or if it was just because I pressed that part of my arm hard into the rock. I also have bad bruising on both sides of my elbow from getting stuck in a forearm jam.

Also I noticed as I close my hand my pinky wants to stop closing until it suddenly jerks forwards towards the palm.

High tech forearm diagram
High tech forearm diagram

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By Pontoon
From Minneapolis, Minnesota
Nov 13, 2014
The pain had gone away for a month or two... But it's back! :( I now know it's not related to any bruising or anything. I first felt it when I was pulling hard on a route at my limit. I don't know if it's something that built up because I climbed a lot lately, or if it's some sort of strain that happens when I pull too hard.

Has anyone else experienced this sort of pain? After I lower from a route I always want to hit the undersides of my forearms to massage out the feeling that happens when I get really pumped now. When I'm climbing I don't really notice it too much, it's not a very sharp pain. The biggest way I notice it is when I'm not climbing and I grip something really hard, it hurts on the underside of the forearm.

I did end up seeing a doctor and he diagnosed it as a muscle strain and told me I can keep climbing as long as I don't climb too hard. And it did go away based on doing that, but I'm worried it's going to come back over and over. I wonder if I have to stretch or strengthen certain muscles to avoid having this injury over and over.

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By kevin neville
From Somerville, MA
Nov 13, 2014
I've had an issue with my right forearm for a couple of years now. I wonder if it's the same?

Aggravated by hard pulling that's mostly fingers, not palm or jams -- good crimps and mini-jugs on overhanging faces are worst. And this might be diagnostic: it's not most painful when it's fully weighted, rather right as the weight is released. A few times I've had to release the hold slowly, to keep the pain from spiking (mostly I stop well before it hurts that much though). It's very use-dependent and rest-dependent. I can't go bouldering at the gym on consecutive days, and three times in a week is pushing it. A few days of rest helps a lot; but, longer rests don't seem to help more. Even long rests of a few months didn't really fix it, as soon as I pushed it for a long day or two it was hurting again.

Sound like the same thing, Pontoon?

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By Pontoon
From Minneapolis, Minnesota
Nov 21, 2014
I guess that sounds pretty similar. I can't say whether it's painful when gripping or releasing. Hard crimping and overhang climbing seem to cause it for me. I was climbing 4 or even 5 times a week and 2.5-3.5 hours per session. I'm almost a week into a two week period of rest (no climbing) trying to rehab it with antagonist training and stretching. Will go back to climbing beginning with easy endurance training. That's how I rehabbed it before. What I really want to know is how to prevent it from recurring. Is the answer climb less hard, or is it climb fewer hours, or is it to be less lazy about warmup/antagonist training/stretching?

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