Ever since my last SUP race in late August, I’ve backed off paddling to rest and recover. I haven’t been sitting on my arse tho, I’ve doing light cross-training such as cycling, swimming and martial arts. This keeps up your base fitness, without stressing the body too much, especially the areas that need to recovery from the racing season, such as the shoulders, back and hips.
As part of the recovery, I thought I’d find out what muscular-skeleto damage I was doing to myself and if it was fixable. Based on recommendation, I booked an appointment with Dave Mott, lead Physio at dmphysiofitness. Dave SUP’s as well and is a highly experienced in sports injury. He isolated the major areas that need addressing, mainly a highly immobile thoracic spine (from shoulders to small of back) and overreaching in my right shoulder paddle movement. In addition he found I’d managed to dislocate my left collarbone (clavicle) from the AC joint, probably from my Rugby playing twenties, which effects the positioning of my shoulder.
All fixable fortunately, he gave me a prescription circuit of rehabilitation exercises (downloadable to a smart phone or computers, which are working nicely!), sports massage and considerations for paddle technique.
If you are carrying or developing long term aches and pains, try this:
1. STOP!!! When you can (like in the off-season….which for SUP in the UK is now!).
2. Have a break from paddling; give your body the chance to repair.
3. Seek specialist advice on how to proceed and rehabilitate.
4. Once rested, build up you paddling again, slow and steady, with a massive focus on the technical aspects of paddling.
The message I’m sending from this is simple. If you are doing a sport that you want to be doing for the rest of your life, address the issues or the chances of lifetime sport disappears!!!