Vertical viciousness – hand and footcare tips for climbers
If you’re a climber, you’ll know only too well the toll that climbing takes on your hands and feet. The rocks, ropes and harsh conditions can be vicious. And although exhilarating, the after-effects can be painful, and impact how you carry out other activities.
At Balmy Fox, we specialise in creating protective and nourishing balms and creams for people who love being outside. Because like you, we love the great outdoors and don’t want anything to spoil our enjoyment. So here’s our tried and tested tips for looking after your hands and feet, to help maximise your time on the cliff face
‘Hands On’ (Sorry) Tips for Climbers’ Hands
Experienced climbers will know that short fingernails are a must for climbing, along with carrying the right climbing chalk and file to quickly get rid of any tears or loose bits of skin.
Hard, thickened, gnarly bits of skin and callouses are par for the course in climbers’ hands. Filing them regularly using an emery board will help to keep them under control. But while they’re forming, it can be useful to give them a bit of a helping hand by applying a nourishing balm after filing.
Using tape on the fingers and parts of the hands that are sore, blistered or thickened will also help to keep them protected.
The last thing climber’s hands need when they’re climbing is anything slippery or moisturising. During a climb, the drier the hands, the better, which is why powdered chalk is so ubiquitous among climbers.
But always keeping them dry and un-moisturised even when you’re not climbing isn’t a good idea. Just like a runners’ feet or a wheelchair racers’ chair, your hands are your most important tool. So looking after them away from the cliffs and walls is crucial.
To stay healthy, your skin requires hydration, so that’s why we developed our range of skincare products ideal for climbers. They nourish and hydrate the skin, whilst not leaving it feeling waxy or over moisturised. We use natural ingredients that leave the skin hydrated enough to remain supple, but not so much that it becomes greasy.
Looking After Climbers’ Feet
Much like for runners’ feet, one of the most annoying afflictions for climbers is athletes foot. Caused by fungi growing in the damp, warm environment of active feet, the best weapon against athletes foot is clean, dry feet.
Easier said than done when you’re halfway through a gruelling, sweaty climb. But as soon as possible after you’re done, whip off those damp socks and get those feet dry. Air dry them if you don’t have a towel immediately to hand. Then put on some dry socks to get you home.
When you’re home or back to base, clean your feet thoroughly, and make sure you completely dry them, including between the toes. (Mum was always right, drying in between the toes really is important.)
Our climbers’ balm has been specially developed with athletes foot and dry, cracked skin caused by repeated blisters in mind. It’s a multi-use salve that could well be the answer to your foot problem prayers.
It’s small and easy to carry if you need it en route up a cliff face to soothe any irritated spots on the go. It’s also ideally suited to nourishing the feet post-climb, so that they’re ready for the next one.
What’s more, everything thing we do is with careful consideration for the planet and for the people who produce our ingredients. We use organic where we can, and all our ingredients come directly from nature.
Nature-driven products, to help you enjoy your time out in nature. It’s perfect serendipity. What more could you ask for?