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Old 01-13-2008, 11:40 AM   #18
Ian Kovtunovich
Member Ian Kovtunovich is offline
 
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Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Portland  OR
Posts: 117
Re: Avoiding shoulder injuries, and fixing them - What's the best course of action?

It's sort of funny reading these injury threads...Steven Low is right; if doing something puts you in pain...stop doing it! I learned this valuable lesson from a physical therapist, unfortunately after I had surgery (see below). And any climbers out there who read Rock & Ice may have come across articles recently by Dr. Julian Saunders, who is fond of noting that if you just stop ****ing your condition off, it will usually resolve itself (typically in reference to tendonitis).

Admitting that, yes, you are injured can be hard, especially when you realize that it means scaling back or even stopping training, but continuing to do the activity that injured you in the first place will not heal you. Having rock climbed for 15 years, it has become almost routine for me to have to sit out a couple months for a finger or elbow injury, and I had to sit out almost a year after shoulder surgery (torn biceps tendon). The latter was my first (so far only) surgical injury, and it got to that point because I kept training harder and harder and ignoring first the pain, then the grinding, popping, and clicking noises coming from my shoulder.

Surgery is a lousy and expensive, but very effective, way of making you rest. Obviously, some injuries are surgical regardless of how much you rest, but many start out minor, and get aggravated from overuse, to the point that they become much more severe.

The more positive thing I've learned is that, in the context of my biceps tendon injury, muscle imbalance was a big contributing factor, and a lot of more minor nagging injuries can be held at bay by working opposing muscle groups, as opposed to, say, only working the pulling muscles and never pushing. So CrossFit can be a great way to stay out of that kind of trouble...provided you don't get hurt CrossFitting, that is!

Best of luck on staying injury-free.
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