Most Common Rock Climbing Injuries

Rock climbing is a fun, exciting sport and great way to keep fit and active. But you need to know the risks involved so you can prepare correctly and avoid injury. Team Re-Claim’s rock climbing expert Siti Nursara outlines the most common rock climbing injuries and tips on how to prevent them.


Finger Injuries

There are three major types of finger injuries:

  • An A2 pulley injury can happen when sudden pressure is placed on the hand. This can cause an alarming popping sound. About 90 per cent of all rock climbing injuries come from this.
  • Collateral ligament strains when a climber places too much pressure on the side-pulling hand while stretching with the other to grab a hold.
  • “Climber’s finger” or injury to the flexor tendon sheath can happen when a climber uses their finger to support their entire body weight. This strain can cause a loud pop followed by intense paid that may require surgery.

Tips with Sara: The small finger joints handle a lot of different stresses and strains while climbing. They are exposed to compressions, shearing, twisting and traction. Using finger tape is one way to reduce finger injuries getting worse. The basic idea is to create a layer of protection to prevent your skin from ripping. Research shows that taping for finger tendons or pulley injuries is sometimes ineffective. Rest is the best remedy.


Common Rock Climbing injuries Fingers

Recovery from finger injuries during training with KT tape.


Knuckle Stress Fractures

Knuckle stress fractures are caused by too much stress on the knuckles. Inflammation and pain can become excruciating especially when grabbing holds that are too small for the fingertips.

Tips with Sara: Knuckle stress fractures mainly happen during crack climbing. There are two main reasons for using tape for crack climbing; skin protection and structural support.

Uses of tape:

  • Protection of dressings
  •  Holding padding in place
  • Compression of an injury, blood and/or swelling
  • Support of recent joint or muscle injuries and protection from further injury
  • Limitation of range of motion at a joint
  • Support of an area to aid early return to sport


common rock climbing injuries knuckles

Correct finger and knuckle taping is important



As rock climbing is more punishing on the pulling muscles such as the biceps, forearms and trapezius muscles, the tendons tend to get strained and cause elbow and shoulder aches which can be attributed to tendonitis.

Tips with Sara: Shoulder tendinitis is a common overuse injury in sports climbing where the arm is used in an overhead motion. Shoulder tendonitis can be prevented by focusing on exercising the pushing muscles such as the pectorals, triceps and anterior deltoids to balance the strain on the tendons. The best treatment if injured is Rest, Ice, Medication.

Rest — Avoid things that hurt or make the pain worse the next day. Avoid the activity that started the problem. Your doctor may recommend a sling to immobilise the shoulder.

Ice — Apply an ice bag (over a towel) to your shoulder at least twice a day for 20 minutes. Also apply ice after any activity that aggravates your shoulder pain.

Medication — Your doctor may prescribe anti-inflammatory or analgesic medication to relieve pain and inflammation while your body’s natural healing process begins. An injection of cortisone with novocaine into the shoulder may be recommended. After receiving an injection, do not attempt any vigorous activities with your arm for at least two weeks.


Common Rock Climbing Injuries Siti nursara

Rest is the best treatment for tendon injuries


Rock Climbing Falls

Rock climbing falls can be nasty and potentially fatal. Accidents are sometimes unavoidable but you can mitigate the severity by using helmets and making sure you are physically and psychologically prepared.

Tips with Sara:

a) Make sure you have proper equipment for climbing and the most important thing is the equipment is in good condition.

b) You must always warm up correctly before climbing. Skip this step at your own peril.

c) It’s equally important to know your own strengths and weaknesses. You may be excited to start climbing but you don’t want to overdo it.

d) It’s necessary to rest in between climbing attempts. This is particularly vital for those who are new to bouldering. Your body won’t be familiar with the various types of movements, so don’t be afraid to take breaks.


common rock climbing injuries siti nursara mid climb

Know your capabilities and have fun.


Re-Claim offers 24/7, worldwide sports accident cover including protection for sports such as rock climbing and sports climbing.

For more information go to

#TeamReClaim #AreYouCovered #WeGotYourBack

7 Hilarious Athlete Injuries You Can’t Predict

Athletes are sometimes regarded as mere mortals, accomplishing Olympian feats of strength, agility, dexterity and endurance. Yes, they suffer serious injuries but often return renewed and revitalised where average Joe would normally give up.

There’s times, though, where a slight slip or unfortunate mishap can bring these super-humans crashing down to earth. Here’s 8 of the funniest athlete injuries we’ve come across.


David Batty, Football — Death on 3 wheels

Kids, God bless them! What happens when a three-year-old girl on a tricycle rams into a man’s ankle? A season-ending injury. Perhaps former England, Leeds, Blackburn and Newcastle star David Batty wasn’t as nice with his Christmas gift to his daughter that year?

Athlete Injuries david batty

David Batty (left) could fly kick with the best, but it was a three-year-old and tricycle that brought him undone.


Svein Grøndalen, Football — When animals attack

Norwegian footballer Svein Grøndalen was out on a routine jog, keeping fit and ready to kick some goals. Instead he managed to ram head first into a moose. Wow! His injuries were so grievous he missed Norway’s World Cup qualifier against Finland.

Althete Injury

Moose alert!


Kim Clijsters, Tennis — Wedding drama

Tennis is a graceful sport. So, too are weddings. Yet in 2011, Belgian tennis queen Kim Clijsters jeopardised her French Open campaign after it was reported she “strained both the medial and lateral ligaments of her right ankle as well as suffering injuries to the ankle joint and tendon” at her cousin’s wedding. The reasons behind the slip were never revealed, but it’s safe to presume Kim should have been wearing flats.


Brandt Snedeker, Golf — Nice Segway!

Apart from overuse injures, rarely do you hear of accidents or injuries that happen on the golf course. What is more common is stories of pro golfers having an accident skiing. But

World No 20 Brandt Snedeker’s case tops the list. Snedeker landed awkwardly after falling from a Segway in China in 2013, bruising his left tibia and ACL, keeping him out for a couple of weeks. Ouch!


Lionel Letizi, Football — ‘M’ is for medical leave

Paris Saint-German goalkeeper Lionel Letizi probably didn’t expect a tame game of Scrabble to keep him off the pitch. In 2002, the Frenchman threw his back out reaching for a fallen Scrabble tile. LOL! They say he was trying to spell P-H-Y-S-I-O-T-H-E-R-A-P-Y

Athlete injuries Lionel Letizi

‘M’ is for Medical leave!


Sascha Bender, Football — Blowing in the wind

Usually most sports injuries occur by accident or pure negligence. Once in a while, it happens when an athlete gets punched in the face, even less when it’s by his own team mate and hardly ever when it’s for flatulence. But yes, believe it or not, Sascha Bender was punched in the face by Stuttgart Kickers teammate Christian Okpala for farting too much. Hilarious!


Blanka Vlašić, High Jump — Knock, Knock ….

Warming up is essential for all athletes and is supposed to be a non-hazardous exercise. But not for high jump starlet, Blanka Vlašić. The Croatian was stretching in her hotel room prior to the 2009 World Championships when she knocked her head on a door post, requiring six stitches. Despite missing the warmups, she cleared all four jumps in qualifying and went onto win gold.

Athlete Injuries Blanka Vlašić

Two-time world champion Blanka Vlašić


Join Team Re-Claim to receive cover for sporting accidents 24/7, worldwide.

More info

#AreYouCovered #WeGotYourBack

Incorrect diagnosis and sporting injuries

Best Doctors 2nd opinion service against misdiagnosis

BestDoctors™: Your ally against misdiagnosis.


Did you know Re-Claim Sports Insurance partner BestDoctors™ can provide much needed assistance and help in the case of misdiagnosis?

From a patch of sand on the road as you cycle, to an unsuccessful attempt at breaking your dead lift record, accidents and injuries are the risks we take in pursuit of our athletic goals. After an accident we trust the medical advice we receive, but what if the doctor’s diagnosis is wrong and your injury isn’t getting better?

Recent studies estimate around 5 per cent of diagnoses in the USA are classified as incorrect*. That’s roughly 12 million people a year. You don’t want to take that risk here in Malaysia.

Unfortunately, if your diagnosis is wrong, it is likely that every decision after that will be detriment to your recovery as well.

A misdiagnosis can lead to incorrect or unnecessary treatments, meaning you stay out of action for longer. With medical fees on the rise, extra treatment can also be extremely costly, adding financial pressure at a time when you may be unable to work due to your injury.  

Following the wrong advice can also take a toll on you physically, placing additional and unnecessary stress on the original injury site and damaging surrounding structures. In fact, recent studies highlight the possibility of re-injury increases by over 60 per cent when an incorrectly targeted rehabilitation program is used*.  

So, how do you avoid a potentially damaging misdiagnosis?

Easy. Speak up!


The best chance you have at receiving the correct diagnosis and preventing further damage, is to ensure your doctor has as much information as possible. Listen to your body, communicate your concerns and don’t be afraid to seek a second, third or even fourth opinion.

And that’s where Re-Claim comes in.

Re-Claim Sports Insurance gives you access to the BestDoctors™ online service to give you absolute peace of mind in your diagnosis and treatment for sports injuries. The BestDoctors™ service gives you a second opinion on your injury and advises if your previous treatments have been ill-advised.

BestDoctors™ also unlocks the expert opinions and guidance of world leading specialists to advise on all aspects of your specific injury. Included as part of your Re-Claim Sports Insurance policy, BestDoctors™ saves you from ever-increasing specialist consulting fees through its easily accessed online portal and phone service.

When faced with injury treatment and rehabilitation, you want to be sure you’re doing everything right to get yourself back on track as quickly as possible. With specialist advice only a phone call away, BestDoctors™ is your greatest ally in the fight to get back to your best.

How BestDoctors™ works?

  • You call BestDoctors™ with your concern(s).
  • A member of the BestDoctors™ clinical team has an in-depth discussion with you and gather necessary medical information.
  • Your questions and medical information are sent to a medical expert for review.
  • You receive a report with the expert’s answers within 5-7 days, including suggestions for treatment options and evaluation of previous diagnosis.

No hassle, no stress, no concerns. Just call 1800 818 034

For more information about our second medical opinion service CLICK HERE  

Team Re-Claim — #WeGotYourBack      

* Research

Hardeep Singh,1 Ashley N D Meyer,1 Eric J Thomas2, 2014. The frequency of diagnostic errors in outpatient care: estimations from three large observational studies involving US adult populations.

Staying injury free with Team Re-Claim Athlete Chris Kha Khrang

Staying injury free with Team Re-Claim Athlete Chris Kha Khrang

Injury is every athlete’s worst nightmare. Just ask international triathlete Chris Kha Khrang. It’s taken her years of learning from mistakes and understanding her body to truly comprehend how devastating sports injuries are. Here’s a two-part series detailing Chris’s tips for staying injury free.

Knowing Your Limits

My worst fear is that injury will prevent me from racing. This has come after years of pain and agony from multiple injuries. Now, I spend a lot more time understanding how my body and muscles work so I can optimise my training and be more conscious of my recovery and rest. 

One of the biggest mistakes an athlete can make is not knowing their limits. Sure, we all have that inner desire to push as hard as we can but sometimes you need to be smarter, not stronger. We need to be realistic and patient when training so you only push your boundaries when physically primed. 

When training for a marathon or Ironman, I often incorporate speed interval training on the track or treadmill to improve endurance without sacrificing speed. As a youngster, I would tend to ignore the build up of muscle fatigue during these sessions and push through. This is when injury would happen.

Muscle soreness vs. Injury

Muscle soreness is a normal part of training but you have to be aware there is a fine line between injury and muscle soreness. You need to be in tune with your body to understand the different types of pain so you can make the call to stop training before things go wrong.

The most common injury for runners pushing their limits are tears to their glute muscles and Achilles tendons. This happened to me as I failed to recognise the difference between muscle soreness, which I thought was normal, and  the onset of injury. As a result I missed many weeks of key preparation for an event. It was only during my rehab and recovery that I realised I abused my muscles and over-exerted the fatigued muscle group.

Establishing your limits

You need to set a benchmark for your training and train according to your capabilities.

A simple way to do that is by determining your maximum running threshold pace by performing a 2km time trial on the track or clear stretch of road. 
Your maximum running threshold pace per kilometre will be the average pace of your 2km time trial.
Set your training according to your maximum threshold pace. A common rule of thumb would be to add 90 to 120 seconds of that pace for your easy runs (70% of weekly mileage), 30 to 45 seconds for long, tempo runs (20% of weekly mileage) and minus 20 to 0 seconds for speed runs (10% of weekly mileage).
Run a 2km time trial every 3 to 4 weeks to reset your training benchmarks and track your progress.

The mistake many people make is trying to train at their goal race pace too early. This is silly as your body is simply not ready, increasing your chance of injury. You need to build to your race goals patiently and consistently by giving yourself anywhere from 3 to 6 months to get race ready for an important race. The idea is to hit your maximum speed on race day when your body is in peak condition and not be injured or fatigued when you get to the start line.

staying In jury free Chris Kha Khrang

The next step

Once you have set your limits, you need to be realistic and patient about your progression. Many injuries occur when you set short-term goals that push those limits. For example, you’d be foolish to try and lower your 21km (half marathon) PB by 30 minutes in three months. Instead, focus on enjoying the training process, executing the race plan and the PBs will follow naturally after that.

This is where working with professional coaches and learning from my mistakes has aided me in staying injury free during my career.

Chris is a #TeamReClaim athlete. She knows what it takes to reach her best. Follow Chris on Instagram @CHRISKHAKHRANG


Re-Claim is Malaysia’s comprehensive sports accident insurance plan and we support athletes who know their boundaries and know how to go beyond them to reach their potential.

Check in with your current insurance provider to see what you are covered for, or contact us at for more information.

#WeGotYourBack #WhatIsReClaim

Staying injury free with Chris Kha Khrang Part 2

Injury is every athlete’s worst nightmare. Just ask international triathlete Chris Kha Khrang. It’s taken her years of learning from mistakes and understanding her body to truly comprehend how devastating sports injuries are. Here’s her second blog on how muscle maintenance and avoiding muscle imbalances can help you stay injury free. 

Maintenance and managing imbalances

One of the biggest mistakes people make is continuing to train when injured. They feel they are going to fall behind. Take it from me, it’s not worth it. 

I used to worry that I would not finish a programme, so I would push through the pain and injury to finish. It would end up making things worse. Now, if I’m presented with the same scenario and feel an injury coming on just weeks out from a competition, I stop doing whatever is causing the pain altogether and focus on stretching, physiotherapy and doing a lot of cross-training. 

Stretching & Foam Rolling

Stretching after exercise is very important to staying injury free as it provides more elasticity in the muscles. The best complement to stretching in aiding recovery is foam rolling and deep tissue massage. 

For long distance runners, foam rolling the glutes, calves and hamstrings are vital, particularly for preventing Iliotibial Band Syndrome, which causes pain on the outer side of the knee and thigh. Tightness of the ITB can make subtle changes to the way the knee moves resulting in knee pain and injuries such as runner’s knee.

For cyclists, foam rolling helps in getting rid of lactic acid in the quadriceps. 

As a triathlete, it is important to stretch out the various muscles used for swimming, cycling and running to prevent carrying over an injury from one sport into the other.


For runners, cross-training with swimming, cycling, yoga and strength training can help reduce the chances of overuse and muscle imbalances. For example, if you feel your calves are overworked it is best to rest your lower body and working on strength training your upper body and core. 

If you totally ignore strength training for core and upper body, you will increase the chances of developing poor running posture which comes as a result of your body trying to compensate for fatigued or overworked muscles. 

This can lead to more injuries. 

Most running injuries happen towards the latter half of a race or training session. When you are fatigued and slow down, it is usually because of a lack of conditioning of the muscles that support your running posture. This indicates that a) you are probably not cut out to run for that length in duration yet – try reducing your mileage to something where you can hold good posture and technique — and b) you need to improve your muscle conditioning via strength training.

Strength training helps you maintain your running posture when your muscles are most fatigued. 


Nutrition for recovery is just as important as stretching and strength training. 

Consuming energy drinks that are rich in electrolytes, protein and carbohydrates after each training session is important for being able to be ready for the next training session.

What you need?
Protein drinks for aiding muscle repair
Sports drinks high in sodium and electrolytes to restore lost fluids; and
Carbohydrates to refuel your glycogen stores 

The bottom line is, know your body, know your limitations and be flexible with your goals  — there will always be another race.

Chris is a #TeamReClaim athlete. She knows what it takes to reach her best. Follow Chris on Instagram @CHRISKHAKHRANG  

Re-Claim is Malaysia’s next level, comprehensive sports accident insurance plan and we support athletes who know their boundaries and know how to go beyond them to reach their potential.

Check in with your current insurance provider to see what you are covered for, or contact us at for more information.

#WeGotYourBack #WhatIsReClaim

Why People Suffer Running Injuries

Sports injuries are incredibly frustrating. Particularly if it’s as simple as a running-related injury.


how to avoid running injuriesStudies have revealed a high rate of running injuries in social or novice runners who are commencing a running programme or are starting their training for a long-distance event like a half marathon.

These people are generally inadequately prepared to cope with the stresses of long-distance running and increase their chance of knee problems, shin splints, plantar fasciitis and Achilles tendon issues.

A 2014 study of 933 novice runners revealed more than 27 per cent of participants sustained a running injury, while half of them failed to complete a 1000m run 10 weeks later and five per cent eventually required medical treatment.

Genevieve Chan, Physiotherapist at Kuala Lumpur Sports Medicine Centre (KLSMC), says most running-related injuries in beginner and social runners stem from muscle imbalances and a general lack of preparation.

“Malaysians tend to participate in a single form of activity with the mind-set that it is the all-in-all goal of achieving fitness,” she said.

“They do not prepare their body for the form of activity that they have chosen.

“As a result, injuries occur quite frequently and they end up stopping their admirable goal of achieving a better fitness level.”

Here’s 4 common reasons (and one misconception) why novice or beginner runners experience running injuries:

1.Your upper leg muscles have become tight and imbalanced due to poor posture and being in a sedentary position. Recommended exercises for testing muscle imbalances include trunk

how to treat running injuriesrotation, leg lift and hip rotation. Read More

2.You are running late from work and have not stretched properly for your evening 5km circuit. Warm-up with a brisk walk to elevate your heart rate, followed by leg and arm swings, walking lunges, knee highs, ankle circles, pectoral stretch and neck stretch.

3.You are wearing inadequate footwear, but decide to go on your morning run anyway. Identifying your arch type and foot alignment is important to finding the perfect shoe to fit your foot. Read More

4.You are told over-striding causes shin splints. Incorrect. Longer strides actually taxes and increases the anterior to posterior muscle imbalance in the lower leg, heightening the chance of injury.

You fail to notice the warning signs and ignore persistent aches and pains leading to further damage.

If you’re thinking about starting a running programme, call your insurance provider today to make sure you are covered for treatment for injuries and access to sports specific physiotherapy and rehabilitation. Re-Claim covers physiotherapy up to 180 days 

See further Re-Claim Product details here

Luckily, at Re-Claim we cover all that — and more. Register today at to learn more about our unique Re-Claim benefits including our partnership with KLSMC.

How Your Xbox Can Prevent Your Next Knee Injury

How Your Xbox Can Prevent Your Next Knee Injury

Scientific research and technology is playing an increasingly important role in preventing sports injuries.

Now, experts say computer game technology can be used to detect an athlete’s risk of knee Injury and Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL) injuries in sports.

Speaking to, Dr. Aaron Gray at the University of Missouri believes motion-sensing technology in Microsoft’s Kinect Sports can help test the movements of high school male and female athletes and chart the way they jump and land.



“It’s kind of crazy. I was actually doing my sports medicine training and had recently bought an Xbox video game system. I was playing around with it and doing a game where you had to move around. The character was controlled by your movements,” Dr. Gray told

“I immediately thought, ‘Wait, could we use this for medical research?’

“It’s been about three or four years now and we’re finally at a point where we have software that we’re able to go out to high schools and gyms and actually test high school male and female athletes.”

In an article published in the Sydney Morning Herald, Doctors in Australia say about half of all ACL injuries could be prevented if young people received balance and agility training tailored to their sports and individual bodies.

Given the long recovery time of ACL surgery — not to mention the expenses — it’s no wonder researchers like Dr. Gray are looking for alternatives.


“We’re trying to bring expensive lab-based tests to the masses. We want to make things that have been proven in the lab through previous medical research and make those accessible to any athlete anywhere in the country or anywhere in the world,” Dr. Gray said.

Kinect Sports utilises Microsoft Kinect’s motion-sensing technology and is designed to mimic the actions performed in real life sports. Doctors can see the instabilities and imbalances of athletes and assess their risk of knee injuries without putting them through the rigours of physical contact.

Leading knee surgeon and Associate Professor of Bond and Griffith universities in Australia, Chris Vertullo, estimates an ACL injury prevention programme for young athletes would cut Australia’s public health costs by $AUD120 million over four years.

That’s incredible!

With Malaysia’s high rate of ACL injuries in popular sports such as futsal and football, there’s no reason such technology and preventive measures can be successful here.

Genevieve Chan, Physiotherapist at Kuala Lumpur Sports Medicine Centre (KLSMC), says athletes in sports such as football and futsal need good neuromuscular control and muscle reaction especially with quick changes in direction.

She adds Plyometric training like jumping and balance drills improve this so the joint and body can cope with the stresses put on it and limit the chances of ACL tears.

Maybe one day we’ll see this type of training or detection of imbalances in Malaysian athletes transferred to motion-sensing technology?

Watch our 2-minute presentation on Re-Claim at for more information on our unique Re-Claim benefits including stem cell therapy and sports specific physiotherapy and rehabilitation at KLSMC.

WATCH HERE for’s report on Microsoft Kinect’s motion-sensing technology.