Colorado offers a barrage of breathtaking rock formations and stellar peaks. Such awe-inspiring geographical features are what makes the state a perfect place for rock climbing. Indeed, rock climbing is an extremely popular sport in Colorado, yielding luminaries such as Kyle Copland, Emily Harrington, and current rock climbing poster boy Tommy Caldwell.
After years of honing his chops on Colorado’s peaks, Caldwell—a Colorado native—attempted to free climb the Dawn Wall in Yosemite National Park’s El Capitan last January along with a climbing partner, Kevin Jorgeson of California. Dubbed the most difficult climb in the world, Caldwell and Jorgeson climbed the notorious wall with only their hands and feet, using ropes and gear only to stop a fall.
Like Caldwell, perhaps you’re one of the many Colorado locals who enjoy rock climbing so much that it has turned into a passion for you. As is the case whenever strenuous physical activity is involved, however, the possibility of getting injured is always present. That’s the bad news. The good news is with proper treatment, rehabilitation, and follow-up care from a trusted Denver orthopedic surgeon, a rock climber’s injury-induced downtime can be shortened significantly.
Most injuries that a person may sustain from rock climbing are orthopedic in nature. This means that your tendons, ligament and bones are what’s affected by the injury. You’re lucky if that recent rock climb you did only gave you cuts and bruises, but for individuals who have fallen victim to a serious rock climbing injury, the road to complete rehabilitation could be a long and demanding one.
Without doubt, good physical conditioning is the best method for preventing serious injuries from happening. Rock climbers need to have the proper balance of flexibility, strength, and cardiovascular health. A good stretching routine is a necessity in rock climbing, as limber muscles will tear less, recover from exertion more quickly, and allow for a better climb.
When it comes to preventing an injury while climbing, you need to pay attention to what your body is telling you, back off when it hurts too much, and arrange for a consultation with Denver orthopedic surgeons from a center like Steadman Hawkins Clinic Denver in case of injury.
(Source: World fixated as Estes Park climber Tommy Caldwell ascends Dawn Wall, The Denver Post, Jan. 11, 2015)