Climbing and prevention of knee injuries

In the climbing world, there is often talk of injury to the hands, elbows and shoulders, almost without considering how this activity also subjects the lower limbs to important loads and, above all, to movements not so common for them. The scientific evidence, in fact, show how, even in the minority, the injuries to the lower limb are not so rare.
It often happens to us, on the cliff, to see a “lolotte” with the knee completely twisted or a heel, at the height of the face, with the foot all jammed. Given the significant load capacity of the lower limbs, the joints, forced into these poses, are subject to intense cutting forces, those same energies responsible for injuries or overloads of the fibro-cartilage and ligament structures.

In my clinical practice and in literature, without considering accidental falls or unpleasant landings, the most involved joint is undoubtedly that of the knee. Here, then, how the insertion, during the warm-up phase, of some exercises to strengthen the muscles of the lower limb can prevent the onset of injuries and, perhaps, improve the specific technical gesture. What, then, are the structures mainly involved in these injuries? From an anatomical point of view, the passive stability of the knee is guaranteed by the collateral, medial and lateral ligaments, which give stability in latero-lateral and rotational direction, from the cruciate ligaments, anterior and posterior, leading to antero-posterior and rotational stability. , finally, from the meniscus,

The active stability is given by the action of the quadriceps femoris, with its various compacts, and of the muscles of the posterior loggia of the thigh. As in the other body districts, a good length-force relationship between the anterior and posterior muscular chain is necessary to avoid the occurrence of functional overloads that lead to injury of the passive structures.


Thus, complete joint mobility is an essential prerequisite for proper knee function and storage. It is important to have good bending mobility but, above all, in extension (generally more limited direction).

To maintain adequate active stability, it is essential to improve muscle strength and dynamic control of the entire lower limb. To do this, a good reinforcement of the quadriceps and hip stabilizers is strongly recommended for a complete training program.


The squats exercise allows to obtain a good muscular activation of the quadriceps and of the stabilizing muscles of the hip. To vary the load, it can be performed with the support of both limbs or a single limb, to increase the difficulty. 15 repetitions x 5 times



The operation of single leg bridges, allows activating the stabilizers of the hip with a good integration of the core stability. The bridge position is maintained for 5 ‘. 10 repetitions x 3 times.



During the execution of the heel dressings, the functional demand of the hamstrings is very important. Good muscle strength can prevent the onset of pathologies affecting the knee flexor muscles. 15 repetitions x 3 times.


These are just some simple exercises to be included in your training program, to prevent the occurrence of diseases of the knee. The execution of the same in the presence of pain in the lower limb is however to be evaluated together with a physiotherapist or a doctor.

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