In recent years, rock climbing as a sport has experienced a large increase in popularity. As more people have started climbing, so have injury rates grown. Today, the nature of these injuries are mostly due to overuse and mostly affect the upper limbs. With increased safety awareness and the advent of technologies that keep us safer, overuse injuries now account for 65% of climbing injuries versus acute trauma due to a fall. 90% of these injuries affect the upper limb—namely the hand/wrist, followed by the elbow, and then the shoulder 10, 2. Shoulder injuries make up about 17% of all rock climbing injuries, and chronic pain has been reported in 33% of elite climbers 4.
Sport climbing is often associated with more overuse injuries because of: a) reduced fear of falling, b) willingness to try harder moves as a result, and c) often using one shoulder to ‘lock off’ while pivoting the rest of the body around that shoulder 10,2,26.
In particular, if you are male, like climbing at higher grades of difficulty, climb frequently, have been climbing for more than 10 years, or enjoy lead climbing or bouldering, then you are at higher risk for injury 1,32,23,13.
There are a myriad of upper extremity injuries that we can discuss, but we are going to focus on one shoulder injury here—the SLAP tear. A SLAP tear is an injury in which the top of the cartilaginous ring surrounding your shoulder joint is torn (see below for further details). SLAP tears have not been discussed a whole lot, even though it’s often associated with commonly occurring climbing injuries to the shoulder.
Read the full article here: https://theclimbingdoctor.com/slapd-with-a-shoulder-injury/