Climbing injuries and acupuncture

by Tom Markiewicz on April 4, 2006

I stumbled across a provocative set of articles discussing the treatment of climbing injuries from an Eastern medical perspective (primarily using acupuncture). From Acupuncture Today, here are the links to these articles:

Treating Common Wrist and Finger Injuries and Integrating Medical Philosophies, Part One

Treating Common Wrist and Finger Injuries and Integrating Medical Philosophies, Part Two

I’m interested in hearing if anyone has tried using acupuncture to treat a climbing injury. Several years ago I tried acupuncture for a lingering finger injury and I did not have much success. I’ve been told, though, that acupuncture is highly dependent on the skills of the practitioner.

  • Nina

    Hey Tom,

    I see you posted this years ago but in case you’re still interested –

    Recently I had amazing results using acupuncture to treat a climbing injury, and was looking online for other instances of this, but didn’t find any. It was interesting to read the articles you linked, and I think maybe the key thing about acupuncture is that it doesn’t just treat the symptom, it treats the system.

    Chronic wrist pain had dogged me for years, and last year it suddenly became acute, and shot up to my elbow and shoulder. I saw orthopaedic surgeons (with all the Western tests, x-rays, MRIs), I saw physios, osteos . . . energetic healers – the whole thing. I had a small amount of acupuncture which didn’t help much. A few months later (and this supports what you said about the skills – and approach – of the practitioner being crucial), I saw another acupuncturist who treated me a couple of times with massage, and then with a combination of massage, cupping and a tiny bit of needling. That night, after three treatments and six months of disabling (and non-climbing) pain, it was just gone. Absolutely amazing.

    I’ve climbed a few times since, and the pain has just started to return after three awesome weeks. I’m going back this week for a top up, and I reckon it won’t be long before my body can maintain the changes.

    So yeah, two thumbs up for acupuncture eh :)

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