Beyond Tape: the guide to climbing injury and prevention
Mike Gable, DPT As climbing matures as a sport, the available resources to take it seriously as such dramatically increases. Coaches, gyms, and physiotherapists have gained an understanding of the biomechanics of climbing in a way that was in its infancy but a generation ago. Much of this developed through practical experience; but, increasingly, through academic study within the broad paradigm of sports science and medicine. This has allowed youth to enter climbing with a view to becoming highlevel athletes and adults to maintain a high standard of performance decades after first becoming captivated by what was once a countercultural pursuit.
Beyond Tape seeks to bring much of this accumulated knowledge to bear on the problem of avoiding injuries and recovering from them should they occur (somewhat inevitably). As evidenced by its extensive references, the book is rooted in medical research – combined with 15 years as a physical therapy clinic owner/practitioner. Central to the book is the understating and activation of trigger points associated with the musculoskeletal subsystems that enable one to perform at a high standard.
“What you really need to know” summaries combine with anatomically detailed descriptions and concomitant discussion serve to give a comprehensive perspective to a subject much discussed in locker rooms. A sense of all the physiological aspects of climbing that have to come together may make some seek professional help (so to speak), while others may delve deeper into the topic. In either case, this book is a great starting point.—Tom Valis