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On the Injured List for a while

post #1 of 142
Thread Starter 

After an amazing 4 days of training at the Snow Pro Jam, I fell on the narrow stairs in the condo I was staying at and injured my rotator cuff.  Saw the Doctor this morning and will start PT next week.  For now I'm not skiing, have no idea how long I'll be out.  I have a Colorado trip in a couple of months and that now is my priority - being healed for that.  My plans of skiing 5-6 day a week in preparation for my Level II exam are off the table now.  I hope to be back in 2-4 weeks with some cautious easy skiing.  Maybe I'll be lucky, maybe it will be worse then that and I'll be out more weeks then I care to admit at this point.

 

The best laid plans of mice and men seldom come to pass.

 

Whenever I talk about my plans I always finish with the caveat "unless i get injured."  It's not like I never thought this could happen.

post #2 of 142

SMJ,

 

No real medical training to base this on but I do have lots of experiance with injuries -

 

I think you should hold off a bit before you make any decisions about the rest of the ski season; especially going for LII.

 

I had a bad shoulder for 6 years (crappy tendons from a Marine Corp injury) that kept getting progressively worse.  Last year I fell and because the rtc tendon was so crappy, I tore it 90% (found out during the surgery to fix something else in shoulder).  Skied the rest of the day and the season.  I asked the SSD to excuse me from teaching little kids unless they could already get up on their own and on the lift without assistance (he agreed).  Had the surgery in April.

 

Right now your shoulder is probably tender and needs lots of ice and rest and distracts/prevents you from everything you normally do.  When I tore mine, I was so used to the chronic pain, it wasn't much worse (was always a level 3-4 pain and could easily tweak it to 5-9. the tear bumped all the numbers up and more things aggravated it). 

 

When you are skiing, the only time my shoulder hurt was, falling on it, skating up hill (wore it out more than hurt), and bumping gates; yes I kept racing. 

 

You might need to modify your plans but I wouldn't change anything yet.  Wait a little.  Do not underestimate the power of ice and 800mg Motrin biggrin.gif

 

 

Wait a week or two before you  change your plans.  You'll be surprised what you'll be able to do.  I couldn't hold a cup of coffee with my right arm but I could ski and skate to include (lightly) poling and NASTAR starts.

 

Here's to a speedy recovery,

Ken

post #3 of 142
Thread Starter 

Thanks Ken, that's encouraging.  I have absolutely no pain unless I use a lateral raising movement of the arm.  No residual pain, just incredibly limited range of motion (muscle assisted.)  I can raise the arm with the other arm, or put in any position I want (like sleeping for example) with no discomfort.


But I can not raise it laterally past my waist.  It's as if the muscle is completely useless in that direction without extreme pain. 

 

Sudden jerking motions, like a reflexive action to catch something (an escaping cat, a dropped candy) and the arm screams with pain.

 

So it seems pretty clear that one of the rotator cuff muscles, the one that does that motion, is torn or badly sprained.

 

Fear in skiing is of someone hitting me, or something causing me to flail my arms, or try to push someone away from hitting me getting off the lift - and further injuring it.  I can deal with the sudden pain, it goes away quickly.

post #4 of 142

brother I feel your pain!  On a rather depressing note; the jerky movement pain doesn't go away real quick.  I'm 7 months post op and still get it.  Each month it takes a more extreme "jerk" to set it off but it still happens.

 

Sunday I was skiing a bit quick and it was that terrible 11:30 am New England light and everything was grey.  Didn't notice the dip and before I knew it I was in the air and doing about 25-30 mph.  Just like I couldn't see the dip, I couldn't see the landing, so I launched and landed unexpectedly.  The pain in my shoulder took my breath away.  I didn't fall but the landing caused my shoulder to jerk since I wasn't ready for it.

 

In another week or two the fears you listed will go away. 

post #5 of 142

Sorry to hear this SMJ!  Heal fast!

post #6 of 142

Hey SMJ.  Hope it heals quickly.  But be patient!

post #7 of 142
SMJ, sorry to hear about your injury...and you didn't actually do it skiing. Best of luck for a speedy recovery.
post #8 of 142

 

Dec 21, 2010

 

Hi SMJ:

 

Sorry to hear about your injury.  I can sympathize since I'm presently also on injured reserve as well.  However, I'm a week or two away from activation.  Hopefully, you will heal as speedy as I have. Be well,

 

Think snow,

 

CP

post #9 of 142

Sorry to hear that.  Hope you heal quickly.

post #10 of 142

You have a great attitude, SMJ.

post #11 of 142
Quote:
Originally Posted by SkiMangoJazz View Post

Thanks Ken, that's encouraging.  I have absolutely no pain unless I use a lateral raising movement of the arm.  No residual pain, just incredibly limited range of motion (muscle assisted.)  I can raise the arm with the other arm, or put in any position I want (like sleeping for example) with no discomfort.


But I can not raise it laterally past my waist.  It's as if the muscle is completely useless in that direction without extreme pain. 

 

Sudden jerking motions, like a reflexive action to catch something (an escaping cat, a dropped candy) and the arm screams with pain.

 

So it seems pretty clear that one of the rotator cuff muscles, the one that does that motion, is torn or badly sprained.

 

Fear in skiing is of someone hitting me, or something causing me to flail my arms, or try to push someone away from hitting me getting off the lift - and further injuring it.  I can deal with the sudden pain, it goes away quickly.


SMJ, I hope you heal soon, and for somewhat for selfish reasons. I had a fall last Thursday night at Nashoba which resulted in very similar symptoms. I have to shift gears in my car with my left arm because extending my right arm for 1-3-5 results in pain. Beyond that, I can move the arm all I want with assistance in that direction. Not fun, and has put my skiing plans for the next few weeks in limbo.

 

X-ray was negative for breaks and blood so supposedly nothing broken or torn, but I'm going to see about an MRI anyway. I hope we both heal up soon smile.gif

post #12 of 142

SMJ, do feel your pain, done my shoulders too many times.  The last time a physical therapist told me to get at squeeze ball at a sporting goods store and start working with it.  He taught me that heating it up in a microwave increased the comfort level.  That $5 ball really decreased the recovery time and reduced the muscle atrophy. 

 

Ask your doctor about it; it might help.  Heal fast and well.

post #13 of 142
Quote:
Originally Posted by SkiMangoJazz View Post

After an amazing 4 days of training at the Snow Pro Jam, I fell on the narrow stairs in the condo I was staying at and injured my rotator cuff.  Saw the Doctor this morning and will start PT next week.  For now I'm not skiing, have no idea how long I'll be out.  I have a Colorado trip in a couple of months and that now is my priority - being healed for that.  My plans of skiing 5-6 day a week in preparation for my Level II exam are off the table now.  I hope to be back in 2-4 weeks with some cautious easy skiing.  Maybe I'll be lucky, maybe it will be worse then that and I'll be out more weeks then I care to admit at this point.

 

The best laid plans of mice and men seldom come to pass.

 

Whenever I talk about my plans I always finish with the caveat "unless i get injured."  It's not like I never thought this could happen.


SMJ, sorry to hear this. I was looking forward to meeting and skiing with you sometime soon. Hopefully it will get better quicker.

 

I heard a good one the other day "Want to make God laugh? Tell him your plans."

 

Get better!

 

Steve

 

 

post #14 of 142

sorry to hear this, SMJ

 

I have mauled both shoulders many times throughout my life, bicycling and skiing. I will add to the good information above that each time you re-injure that shoulder, the shoulder becomes  looser. You will have to commit to not re-injuring it in the near future, somehow. good luck.

post #15 of 142

Bummer.

 

Hope to see you tho in a couple of weeks, as discussed looks like I'll be off every other Thursday this winter....so 1/2 day wa is semi firmly on the schedule those days this winter.....

 

Do the PT as instructed by MD and keep me posted!

post #16 of 142

Good luck SMJ! I bet you'll be fine by your trip if not a lot sooner. Think positive, healing thoughts, I think that really works. It's the mind/body thing doncha know.

 

post #17 of 142

Bummer Steve. Don't rush the recovery or you'll regret it later. Good luck and hope you can manage a Happy Holiday and Excellent New Year.

 

Time to make lemonade from the lemons. What were those 9 million other things you did not have time to focus on and now you can?

post #18 of 142

SMJ.   Bad news, relax and have a good Christmas and New Years.   start working on that shoulder and you'll be back soon.   good luck/you need some !

post #19 of 142
Thread Starter 

Terry I'm making shineola from shit.  I'm going to do a lot of yoga the next few weeks, something I've never done and always wanted to.  I think it's going to do a lot for my skiing - balance and flexibility, particularly hip flexors.

 

Of course I'll be doing all my Shoulder exercises religiously and will heal faster then they will propose probably.  Lots of dixie cup icing (google it, it's great) and lots of ibuprofen.

 

Thanks Pete.

post #20 of 142

SMJ, sorry to hear the bad news. Sucks to be injured anytime - hope you heal well and quickly!!

 

Now, where's that video of Chris Davenport skiing one-armed? Wasn't it in some Warren Miller movie? Good inspiration!  ;-)

post #21 of 142

Bugger, that is rotten luck, and it wasn't even from skiing (which is probably a good thing, actually).

post #22 of 142

SMJ

 

Bummer on the shoulder.  I've dislocated my right shoulder twice and my left once.  The last time I did the right was last President's Day weekend at Breck.  I had a 3 day ski trip to Aspen to ski with Schanzy two weeks later, and I refused to let it inhibit me.  I got a should imobilizer brace and coerced my Orthopod into letting me ski.  It was fine.  Here's the thread that led me to the brace:

 

http://www.epicski.com/forum/thread/89851/dislocated-my-other-shoulder

 

I thought about getting surgery on it this summer, but decided to train instead.  If I get to my ideal weight this next cycling season, I'll do the surgery in July so I'll be back for winter ski season.

 

Mike

post #23 of 142
Quote:
Originally Posted by weems View Post

Hey SMJ.  Hope it heals quickly.  But be patient!



I'll second the Heal Quickly part but won't hold my breath about the patients part.

 

 

I'm bummed for you.  Heal well.

post #24 of 142
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by habacomike View Post

SMJ

 

Bummer on the shoulder.  I've dislocated my right shoulder twice and my left once.  The last time I did the right was last President's Day weekend at Breck.  I had a 3 day ski trip to Aspen to ski with Schanzy two weeks later, and I refused to let it inhibit me.  I got a should imobilizer brace and coerced my Orthopod into letting me ski.  It was fine.  Here's the thread that led me to the brace:

 

http://www.epicski.com/forum/thread/89851/dislocated-my-other-shoulder

 

I thought about getting surgery on it this summer, but decided to train instead.  If I get to my ideal weight this next cycling season, I'll do the surgery in July so I'll be back for winter ski season.

 

Mike


Hey Mike, thanks!  I just researched for an hour or so and the Breg looks the least restrictive the DonJoy looks good too, and adds compression around the entire shoulder, but I don't know if I need/want that.

 

I'm going to get one of these, any opinions on the Breg vs the DonJoy design (or the cheaper EVS?)

 

Breg http://www.braceshop.com/productcart/pc/Breg-Shoulder-Functional-Stabilizer-51p611.htm

DonJoy http://www.braceshop.com/productcart/pc/viewPrd.asp?idproduct=1877

EVS http://www.danscomp.com/623017.php

 

I've now upgraded my back on snow hopeful date to Jan 1 with a brace.  That's 2 weeks after the injury and two days after my first PT (she can talk me out of it if she can.)

post #25 of 142
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Trekchick View Post

 

I'm bummed for you.  Heal well.


Thanks Trish

post #26 of 142

Fell on the stairs?  Now that's something I'd do! wink.gif

Here's hoping that your pain is gone, your shoulder's healed, and you're back on skis in record time!

Merry & Happy!

SC & UL

post #27 of 142
Thread Starter 

Narrow stairs, carrying bootbag in right hand, iPhone checking email in the other.

Had to twist body diagonally for there to be room to carry the bag down.

Too much tip lead I guess, heel slipped out off of step fell straight down on elbow jamming arm up.

post #28 of 142

A classic walking-down-the-stairs scenario.  Hope you heal quickly, Steve!

post #29 of 142
I got miy shoulder immobilizer from the orthropod. I'd talk with her/him, or with your pt to make sure you get the right one for the weakness imposed by your injury. Best wishes on healing fast.
post #30 of 142

SMJ,

 

I'm very sorry to hear about your injury.  The skiing life can be great after a torn rotator cuff -- I am living proof.

 

I tore my rotator cuff and labrum 3 years ago and learned that it is very important that your doctor and physical therapist know that you are an avid skier.  Tell them that you need to maintain your full range of motion in order to accommodate an awkward fall on snow or a good day in the bumps.  Demo or explain a self-arrested slide on double black terrain so they can visualize the unexpected stresses and range of movements your shoulder may face.  Otherwise, they will treat you to a much lower medical standard called "functional range of motion" frown.gif which will interfere with your skiing.  The more extensive therapy to keep your full range of motion will hurt more, but it is worth it.  In my case, I did everything except the extra bit that I would need to be a baseball pitcher.  I'm very glad I did.  

 

Do your therapy diligently.  It's the same as practicing is for a young musician -- the body and the therapist know about every corner that was cut and every exercise performed with poor technique.  Conversely, meticulously and regularly performed stretches and exercises compound to produce an excellent outcome.  Continue to stretch for several years, or your shoulder will slowly tighten up and lose range of motion.

 

Best wishes for your recovery and for many excellent years on snow to come!

 

-sharpedges

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