Br J Sports Med 38:355-359 doi:10.1136/bjsm.2003.008169
  • Review

Physiology of sport rock climbing

  1. A W Sheel
  1. Correspondence to:
 Dr Sheel
 University of British Columbia, School of Human Kinetics, 210-6081 University Blvd, Vancouver V6T 1Z1, Canada; bill.
  • Accepted 30 September 2003


Rock climbing has increased in popularity as both a recreational physical activity and a competitive sport. Climbing is physiologically unique in requiring sustained and intermittent isometric forearm muscle contractions for upward propulsion. The determinants of climbing performance are not clear but may be attributed to trainable variables rather than specific anthropometric characteristics.


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