stiff finger joints

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pes949
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stiff finger joints

Post by pes949 » November 18th, 2020, 12:04 am

How do folks deal with stiff finger joints. My Left hand middle finger has been getting stiff. curling the finger is ok but it hurts when trying to straighten it and the main knuckle. Any suggestions?
M/63/245Lbs/5'9"

neil262
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Re: stiff finger joints

Post by neil262 » November 18th, 2020, 6:03 am

I was getting cramp in my left hand only, on longer rows. I was rowing with my wedding ring on. I found that once i removed my ring, it seems to have stopped.
Neil
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Tony Cook
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Re: stiff finger joints

Post by Tony Cook » November 18th, 2020, 6:48 am

I just put it down to age and arthritic joints. The previously broken/dislocated fingers are the ones I have most trouble with.
Have to flex the fingers as I go with longer rows.
Born 1963 6' 5" 100Kg
PBs only from 2020 - 100m 15.7s - 1min 355m - 500m 1:28.4 - 1k 3:10.6 - 2k 6:33.7 - 5k 17:34.9 - 6k 20:57.5 - 30min @ 20SPM 8,132m - 10k 36:28.0 - 1 hour 16,094m - HM 1:18:51.7

mict450
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Re: stiff finger joints

Post by mict450 » November 18th, 2020, 6:37 pm

Had this problem in the past when I was actively engaged in competitive pistol shooting. A combination of overuse, over-exercise, joint abuse & older age. Commonly called "trigger finger" of all things. Got to the point I had to actively straighten my fingers with my other had to get them out of the flexed position. Hurt like Hades!!! Only thing that alleviated the condition was ceasing the causal activity, but it took years. No longer afflicted with this problem, thank goodness!
Eric, YOB:1954
Shasta County, CA, small town USA

RichBinAZ
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Re: trigger finger

Post by RichBinAZ » January 18th, 2021, 11:39 pm

I was OK at the gym, but since doing more rowing a home after the pandemic started, I have developed trigger finger, left 3rd finger. (You can google this on the Mayo Clinic site)
Has anyone tried weightlifting hooks to reduce the finger loads?
Will I just be chasing the stress issue to my wrists?
I don't want to stop rowing as the rowing has a number of other positive benefits.
Rich

mict450
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Re: stiff finger joints

Post by mict450 » January 19th, 2021, 12:23 am

Sorry you're afflicted with this ailment. Like a sharp stick in the eye! Mine was the result of overuse, over gripping. You're probably using a death grip while erging.

Mine only healed itself when I stopped competitive pistol shooting. But it took YEARS to resolve. Since you want to continue erging, you're going to have to find a work-around. Weightlifting hooks sounds like a good way to take the strain off of your hands.

When your condition resolves itself, you're gonna have to learn to use a relaxed grip on the erg handles. Or continue using the weight lifting hooks for the rest of your erging life.

You're fortunate that only one finger is affected. All my fingers of both hands, except the thumbs, we're involved.
Eric, YOB:1954
Shasta County, CA, small town USA

RichBinAZ
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Re: Trigger Finger

Post by RichBinAZ » January 19th, 2021, 4:27 pm

Actually I don't death grip the bar, I kind of hold it out on the fingers.
Used to get callouses out on almost all the finger joints until I started wearing gloves.

I suspect it is probably my age (65) compounding with a bit of arthritis. But my hands feel generally swollen all the time. I had the middle 2 fingers on my right hand develop a bit of a trigger response, but they are slowly getting better.
It's just the one on the left hand is having a bigger issue now. Feels like the tendon all along the inside to the wrist is tightening up. To the point where I can only just lay my hand flat on a table. Any more banding back than that is quite painful, all the way to the elbow. It has the bump opposite the knuckle in the palm too... Kind of a diagnostic give away.

I do have pain at the base of both thumbs - that might be arthritis or stress, but I don't use the thumbs holding the bar at all.

I'm looking at those weight lifting hooks and wondering if they will fit the bar. I will probably have to contact the sellers to see what diameter they are. If I had an anvil I may be able to open them up a bit if they are too small

Then if they work, will they start buggering up my wrists??

Oh, my typical workout is 16km at about 125W - which may not be helping.

mict450
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Re: Trigger Finger

Post by mict450 » January 20th, 2021, 2:55 am

RichBinAZ wrote:
January 19th, 2021, 4:27 pm
Actually I don't death grip the bar, I kind of hold it out on the fingers.
Sorry, I was assuming.
RichBinAZ wrote:
January 19th, 2021, 4:27 pm

probably my age (65) compounding with a bit of arthritis. But my hands feel generally swollen all the time.
I'm slightly elder to you. Yeah, that's the dirty little secret of aging. Everything starts breaking down.
RichBinAZ wrote:
January 19th, 2021, 4:27 pm

Oh, my typical workout is 16km at about 125W - which may not be helping.
Overuse syndrome? ie: too much, too fast, too soon? Maybe cut back on volume & try lowering your drag factor.

TBH, mebbe a visit with a rheumatologist would be in order. My cure was cutting out pistol shooting. Since you want to keep erging, your approach will be more complicated, I think.

Best wishes on a good outcome.
Eric, YOB:1954
Shasta County, CA, small town USA

MiddleAgeCRISIS
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Re: stiff finger joints

Post by MiddleAgeCRISIS » January 20th, 2021, 6:40 am

I often use a super loose finger tip joint to avoid a death grip.

I wonder if you have tried near infrared light therapy. I use an 850 nm light from Amazon on my brain off all places and it's been effective in refreshing my noggin.

I haven't used it on injuries but having now mentioned it I have a bit of a knee issue that i will have a go at.

I retired a couple of years ago and I found using this daily, improved sleep and returned my faculties.

My understanding is the energy in the light stimulates the mitochondria which then flushes out all the debris from poor sleep and stress.

www.sciencedirect.com › article › pii
Shining light on the head: Photobiomodulation for brain disorders ...

RichBinAZ
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Re: stiff finger joints

Post by RichBinAZ » January 20th, 2021, 6:34 pm

No problem, all good suggestions. After all, I was asking for answers.

I am going to try some weight lifting hooks to see if they can be used. If it works (and it may take up to 6 weeks to show improvement) it may be a cheap solution ~~~$20 + shipping. just clicking buy now on the site that starts with A.

Pretty sure it was caused by the longer distances, I was doing 8K, 10K & 12K rows with the occasional 16K, but rowing under lockdown I was able to extend that up to mostly 16K for extra benefits - like shorter breathing recovery time & Finally losing weight. The 16K row is around 2000 - 2100 strokes, so definitely a probable cause.

I like the idea of lasers and therapy, but I want to see if this works first.

Tsnor
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Re: stiff finger joints

Post by Tsnor » January 21st, 2021, 12:12 am

Also do add in "playing piano finger motions" occasionally while you are rowing. For me the additional movement avoids tendonitis like symptoms. Even with a loose (hook) grip where fingers hold and thumb does little, if I row without finger wiggles I eventually hit problems.

RichBinAZ
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Re: stiff finger joints

Post by RichBinAZ » February 2nd, 2021, 6:29 pm

So I tried a few rows with the weight lifting hooks - no good. Trigger finger ended up swelling up more than ever.
Tried several rows with a finger splint on, but I can't seem to stop that finger from trying to grip the bar, which of course provokes the swelling.

Resigned to the fact I will need to back off the power level, length and number of times I row, to get rid of the trigger finger and swelling in the other fingers. Oh well.

mict450
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Re: stiff finger joints

Post by mict450 » February 4th, 2021, 2:44 am

Sorry the hooks didn't work out for you, Rich
Eric, YOB:1954
Shasta County, CA, small town USA

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