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Finger tips ripping, consistently?! ATTN: Big/Tall People!
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By Stephen Nance
From Boulder, CO
Dec 9, 2012
I have had an issue with my tips ripping when I climb at my highest level. I have not had this problem until I reached a certain level in my climbing abilities. Before I was able to climb at my highest level and not have issues, but since my progression, it has been consistent.

Does anyone else have this problem?

I can climb 1 full grade below my maximum ability and do fine, but whether it be bouldering or sport climbing, once I get to the top end of my abilities, my finger tips get holes ripped in them. I now have to carry sand paper to grind away any pieces of skin that even look like they will start to peel back because of the inherent risk of them getting worse and worse and eventually leading to bloody holes in my fingers!?

The kicker is: I am 6'6 and 195 pounds. A lot of the stuff I work on consist of small crimps on overhung terrain... Do big climbers inherently have their skin rip quicker because of their size?

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By Old and Busted
From Centennial, CO
Dec 9, 2012
Stabby
6' - 210 lbs pre-recent health problems, have worked thin crimpy 5.12's last year; no flapper problems. You might just have thin skin

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By James Otey
From NH
Dec 9, 2012
Urban Surfer, Rumney. <br /> <br />Photo by Lee Hansche
Gotta lay off the lotion bro!

Go chop some wood or something.

But seriously, I find that people who don't do moves statically/ in control often have their hands grate and slide over whatever hold they are grabbing. Perhaps try to focus on footwork and body positioning to keep in control while climbing.

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By Ryan Williams
Administrator
From London (sort of)
Dec 9, 2012
El Chorro
I have had this conversation with my more muscular friends (usually after a hard day at Font and a few bottles of wine) and we always determine that heavier people must have more of a problem with their skin. It's physics. But of course we little people never want to admit that.

Anyways, like James says, sliding off holds is no good for your skin. There is a difference between wearing down your skin and ripping it off. It sounds like you are doing the latter, which in my experience comes from uncontrolled dynamic movement and over gripping. Also, constantly readjusting your grip can cause problems as well.

Don't get me wrong, if you can control your dynamic movement it is much more effecient that static movement. But control and accuracy are key. Focus on being in total control and sticking holds well so you dont have to readjust three or four times. Also, relax and let your skin and bones work for you, not against you.

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By Jacob Neathawk
From Nederland, CO
Dec 9, 2012
What kind of chalk are you using? I had skin issues for a while when using the loose superchalk. I think the extra drying ingredient was actually making my skin too dry and then it would cut easier. I switched to the regular block chalk and have had better results. I think its also important to wash your hands to get the chalk off after climbing so that it doesnt continue to dry your skin out.

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By Keenan Waeschle
From Bozeman, MT
Dec 9, 2012
on top of the RNWF <br />June 2012
we're the same size brah!

My fingers get chopped up when I first start rock climbing in the spring after 5 months of gripping shafts with gloves on. I climb hard for a day or two, rip the fuck out of my tips, and then take it easy for a week or so until the calluses build up. as long as I continue climbing regularly my tips stay tough. if I slack off i get vagina fingers. Stay strong!

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By Jon Zucco
From Denver, CO
Dec 9, 2012
yaak crack Red Rock Canyon, NV
Try everything mentioned above:

-less over-gripping and slippin' and a slidin' on rougher holds (control your movement as much as you can)

-try changing your chalk

-start using "climb on" bar/wax on your hands after washing them (this helps the skin repair itself while repelling water without thinning and smoothing the skin like lotion might)

-when you pop off: you're gunna rip skin... try anticipating falls and "float" your hands up and off the holds. This take some practice and awareness: isn't always possible when you're at your absolute limit obviously..

-lose some weight.

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By Finn the Human
From The Land of Ooo
Dec 9, 2012
Mathematical!
I'm 6'3" 180lbs, and my finger tips are constantly peeling, but not ripped up like what you're describing.

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By Brent Apgar
From Out of the Loop
Dec 9, 2012
Me and Spearhead
I'm gonna go w/ genetics. I've got friends that don't weigh much more than 145lbs and are constantly blowing holes in their tips and know others that rarely have problems w/ their skin.
This is regardless of rock type, hold type or terrain.

Some folks skin just doesn't hold up to the abuse quite as well.

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By Keenan Waeschle
From Bozeman, MT
Dec 9, 2012
on top of the RNWF <br />June 2012
Jon Zucco wrote:
lose some weight.


I know that if I get below about 190 I'm just too damn skinny. I might be able to clip bolts a little harder but my goddamn ribs are poking out of my chest. Being a 6 foot 6 individual I think that hovering just below 200# is about optimum for overall well being. If I start seriously working out I actually tend to gain weight.

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By guy bon
Dec 9, 2012
yup...
haha losing weight is a terrible idea at those stats

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By Ian McG
Dec 9, 2012
Yea, @ 6'6" 190lbs I wouldn't worry about losing weight. I think working on climbing with as much control as possible may help a lot. Maybe start working on some core exercises, since as a tall guy I bet your body sags quite a bit on the steeps.

edit:

Also, how long have you been climbing? Have you recently changed your climbing setting (different areas, or more/ less time in the gym)? There are a lot of factors that could contribute to this problem.

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By Jon Zucco
From Denver, CO
Dec 9, 2012
yaak crack Red Rock Canyon, NV
guy bon wrote:
haha losing weight is a terrible idea at those stats


haha yeah. I was jk: Don't become an anorexic!

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By Guy Keesee
From Moorpark, CA
Dec 10, 2012
Big Boulder, just a bit downhill from Temple of Kali. Alabama Hills, CA.
What kind of chalk are you using? I had skin issues for a while when using the loose superchalk. I think the extra drying ingredient was actually making my skin too dry and then it would cut easier. I switched to the regular block chalk and have had better results. I think its also important to wash your hands to get the chalk off after climbing so that it doesnt continue to dry your skin out.


I agree 100%. My tips would split lenght-wise, really deep and painfull.

To stop this, I went back to ENDO block chalk.

Wash hands after climbing in warm water, with a brush.

And slather on the hand cream.

If you need to wash dishes in cold weather (camping) use some dish washing gloves.

My tips don't split, I have very deep calouses on my tips and can crank without getting holes in my tips and pick up hot objects without getting burned.

Oh-yea.... im 6.2 ... 198 and have very old skin.

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By John Franck
From Huntersville N.C.
Dec 10, 2012
I'm 6'6", 250 pounds and I don't have many issues with flappers, so I wouldn't think it would be because you're big. But I've worked with my hands all my life so my skins always been pretty tough.

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By nicelegs
From Denver
Dec 10, 2012
You live in nearly zero humidity and you're trying to pull harder. Of course you will get splits.

Sand and lube up when not climbing. Or move to florida.

FLAG


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