It has been a while since we last conducted a Climb for Health session and I last published a post. These have also been challenging times ever since the world met the new coronavirus a few months ago. The world is changing and adapting to a new and widely unknown normal. We have been observing, analysing, discussing, and adapting to the changes. Firmly committed to the initial Climb for Health project, our team is still here for you. We should be honoured to share our expertise with you.
Following current guidance and general best practice, our team is now back to climbing. We very much look forward to organising new mentoring sessions and helping more people get into sport climbing. I shall say though that it is not expected to happen anytime soon.
We would like you to be safe. So, if you are a beginner, you might like to avoid climbing outdoors. I would not normally ask novices to completely disregard the outdoor climbing option. However, unexperienced climbers might suffer some minor accidents, one of those that more experienced climbers would not, and thus need some medical help. I am just asking you to protect valuable resources such as first responders and the NHS.
It might not be long before climbing walls open. Indoor climbing offers a more controlled environment and it is generally better suitable for beginners. Now, you might like to postpone your climbing if you are one of those vulnerable people who need to be shielded. There is limited research on how the virus is transmitted within a climbing indoor facility, therefore, you might like to play it safe and to wait for more data to be made available.
It has been two and a half months now. Two and a half very long months especially for those who have been asked to self isolate for being considered vulnerable. Those who need gentle but complex and motivating workout to recover from exhausting therapies and their heavy side effects. Those who, trapped in kind of a quantum 21st century No Man’s Land, still do exist but do not completely live.
Climbing is an amazing sport. It is complex and it is fun. Most importantly, it is inclusive. I shall be happy to welcome you back to the wall and who knows, eventually to some nice crag, too. Meanwhile, for those who crave working out and have some health consideration, here it goes, my list of activities and precautions.
Before doing anything, talk to your doctor and always follow medical advice. Always! No exceptions! You do not know better!
Provided that your medical team is OK with you exercising, please do not deviate from their advice. You might like to record your activities and keep your doctors informed.
Be sensible. Avoid exposure to UV and stay hydrated. Protect your skin, especially if any lymph nodes have been removed. In this case, you might like to cover the area with a protective tight or sleeve. No matter how trivial your workout might be, stupid accidents happen.
Sports. This is a tricky one. Especially if you suffer from side effects such as extreme fatigue, fluid retention, muscle pain, bone pain or joint pain. What could potentially substitute the benefits of climbing without compromising your body? Take it easy. Start with a walk. Then increase the walking time. Turbo trainers work wonders. If you happen to have it, use it. It is gentler on your knees than riding a bike. Once you start feeling better, I would suggest that you try street ball. Just make sure there is some one to catch the ball for you.
With gyms closed and shielding on, there are fewer activities one could do. Or maybe not? After having cycled on my turbo trainer for two months, walked around for a few days, and chased my basketball around; I am now considering new sports as following: skateboarding with my daughter (if I fail, I can always switch back to classic rollerskating, I honestly hope that I have not forgotten how to manage it), horse riding, and maybe (just maybe) pole dancing.