Influence of regular climbing on depression, generalized anxiety and lower back pain
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Department of Sports Medicine, Medical University, Lublin, Poland
Chair and Department of Rehabilitation, Physiotherapy and Balneotherapy, Medical University, Lublin, Poland
Department of General and Neuro Rehabilitation, Institute of Rural Health, Lublin, Poland
Grzegorz Zieliński   

Department of Sports Medicine, Medical University of Lublin, Poland
Introduction and objective:
Anxiety and depression disorders are increasingly affecting society. Anxiety disorders are the most prevalent psychiatric disorders, and depressive disorders are increasing in society worldwide. Lower back pain is one of the common health problems experienced by 50–80% of adults at some point in their lives. The aim of the study was to assess the climbing environment in terms of depression, generalized anxiety and pain in the lumbar spine.

Material and methods:
139 people training on climbing walls Lublin in December 2019 were invited to participate in the study. After applying exclusion criteria, 113 people with an average age of 30±8 years, 88 men (average age: 30 years) and 35 women (average age: 30 years) were qualified for the study. They were examined by the author’s own questionnaire and the PHQ-9, GAD-7 and ODI questionnaires. Statistical analyses were applied and the significance threshold was set at 0.05.

Overall percentage results suggest mild depression at 27%, moderate anxiety at 27%, and mild back pain at 26% in the group of climbers tested. Climbing level and climbing sub-discipline did not affect the average results of PHQ-9, GAD-7 (p>0.05). Back pain was more common in boulder climbers (p<0.05).

The level of sport climbing did not affect the level of depression, generalized anxiety, and back pain. The sport climbing level did not affect the incidence of injuries. The association in climbing clubs is connected with overcoming more difficult climbing routes and a higher level of generalized anxiety. Bouldering was associated with a greater level of pain in the lumbar spine and more injuries.

The study was not financed by any specific grant from funding agencies in the public, commercial, or not-for-profit sectors.
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