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Topic - which finger is seond-strongest

kenr - on 23 Oct 2012
I was surprised to find that my 4th finger was much stronger than my 2nd finger, working as an independent hanging point. My 3rd (middle) finger was strongest. (Counting my thumb as 1st finger)

I tried it on my fingerboard, with three different grips: open grip on a small hold (finger bent at first knuckle joint), open on a large edge hold (finger bent at second knuckle away from tip), and half-crimp. With my body in a overhanging configuration with feet supported by a chair underneath - (No I'm not strong enough to hang my full unsupported body-weight off a single finger).

Same result for each of the three grips: 3rd finger strongest, 4th finger almost as strong, 2nd finger significantly weaker (and of course 5th little finger was weakest). Results for my Left + Right hands essentially the same in both relative + absolute finger-hang strength.

I would have guessed that my 4th finger was bad at independent action, and that my 2nd finger rather gets lots and lots of practice at independent movements (even more than my 3rd) ... but I guess static hanging is different.

When I did the same test with "teams" of two fingers working together, the team of 2nd + 3rd is equally as strong as my team of 3rd + 4th fingers. (Of course the littlest team of 4th + 5th fingers is notably weaker.)

Do other people get different results?

Does this matter for some kind of actual climbing?

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