I’m almost at the point of having to give up climbing because of intense pain in a spot about the size of a 5p coin!
I’ve called it an “unusual” toe problem because everything I read online seems to be talking about pain on the outside of the big toe and mine is a REALLY localised pain when there is pressure on the joint towards the front of the toe (nearest to the nail) when the toe is bent upwards.
Two pairs of Red Chilli Spirits (lace and Velcro) were my babies but I literally can’t even stand up in them now. I have a pair of La Sportiva Mythos, which I love too much (can walk around in them all day) but climbing in them is useless. Banana skins.
I want to invest in some new shoes but this big toe thing is a nightmare. Any suggestions?
Speak to the doc.
Definitely speak to doctor or physio to find out what exactly the problem is. Is it arthritis? Or some sort of tendonitis or something else? If it's a new thing then there is a good chance it can be treated or reversed.
You could also try experimenting with a foam/rubber ring to see if you can take pressure of the critical area too.
In terms of a specific shoe, it's likely you just need to go into the shops and try on as many different ones as you can get your hands on.
I sounds very like if not exactly what I experienced a couple of years ago. I initially thought it was gout but it persisted so I got it checked out, turns out to be osteo-arthritis, not uncommon in rock climbers and hill runners, especially those of a certain age.
I'd prioritise a diagnosis over new shoes.
You need to see your GP and ask for an appointment with a podiatrist. From what you say it's almost certainly serious and will need treatment and expert advice.
Any climber with over-tight shoes risks bunions and arthritis. It depresses me to see generations of young people trying to squeeze a tiny extra performance gain at a risk to their long term foot health. Unlike the situation for my generation and those before me, there is good advice now that should be followed (see the link below as an example). I've had serious problems since 2000 but as climbing is an important part of my life I still climb regularly, I just wear looser shoes and adjust my technical approach for my footwork and modify my aims slightly. My climbing grades have only dropped slightly (in the context that I'm approaching 60 and becoming more cautious about risk) and I can still climb all day on long routes on a trad holiday.
Difficult to tell what the problem is from what you've written. Is it a joint problem or a nail bed problem for example?? Maybe just book a private appointment with podiatrist? Not sure how a GP will respond to you booking an appointment regarding pain from climbing shoes. Every chance they'll just tell you to find another pair that are more comfortable if it's only the climbing shoes that cause irritation.
Austrian climber Barbara Zangerl has made the second ascent of Kampfzone (8b+), a 5-pitch Beat Kammerlander route in the Rätikon, Switzerland. Zangerl's partner, Jacopo Larcher also climbed the route the following day.