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babymilkbone 05-07-2010 01:43 PM

shoulder problems!
I dislocated my shoulder a week ago and I have already signed up for a triathlon for June 13th. How soon can I swim again? What would be the best stroke that won't put so much strain on the shoulder. I want to be proactive about getting back in the game but at the same time do it with caution. I am seeing mixed advice on biking and running after the dislocation but nothing on swimming. And advice? Thanks so much!

gogglesnoseplugs 05-07-2010 05:05 PM

My advice would be to scratch, but if you are going to go ahead with the triathlon, I suggest using a kickboard or the sidestroke; using the shoulder that is not affected, while minimizing any exertion on the other shoulder.

Just my two cents...

ewa.swimmer 05-07-2010 06:36 PM

When I hurt my shoulder my physical therapist gave me this advice about what I could do in the water: "If it hurts, don't do it." As competitors we all think we need to push through the pain but if you do that with an injury you might at worse do more damage and at least lengthen the recovery process.

naj 05-07-2010 10:02 PM

My advice - and I'm serious about this - is to scratch from the race. If you have any pain at all - not fatigue or soreness but pain - then don't risk it. Stretch get some good massage and see how things go in the pool over time. The triathlon season just started so there are plenty of races to get involved with later.

flppr 05-08-2010 09:35 AM

it really depends on what part of the joint capsule was torn: superior, inferior, anterior, or posterior. if you truly dislocated your shoulder, you now have a permanent area of instability in your shoulder and will dislocate again the next time the head of your humerus moves too far in the direction of that instability. it won't be too fun dislocating during your swim. consult a sports med md or other specialist, and take them with you while swimming because if you dislocate, you will need them to pop the joint back in the socket.

elskbrev 05-14-2010 02:35 AM

shoulder problems
How mobile is your shoulder? Can you endure miles of relaxed, effortless freestyle? If not, scratch the race. If yes, do as Terry did after his shoulder surgery. See blog post: 'How a Shoulder Injury helped me swim better than ever,' by Terry Laughlin, Posted on Apr 09, 2009 at .

I deal with a sore shoulder, an old injury that pre-dates my swimming efforts by several years. It forces me to find my most efficient place in the water.

Careful progress is important. Work it too much sore and you will end up with a case of tendonitis that could require years of rest to heal. Ice after working it and deep tissue massage. Don't just swim--balance strength in your shoulder through physical therapy. The Total Gym or elastic tubing are good for covering the full range of motion.


elskbrev 05-14-2010 02:59 AM

single arm freestyle
p.s. You could try this:

babymilkbone 05-17-2010 01:54 PM

I ended up putting that off till next year and I am hoping to get in a couple of triathlons towards the end of the season. I did try swimming yesterday to find out it hurt too bad. So holding off a couple more weeks. Thanks for all the information!

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