View Full Version : dislocated shoulder

13th October 2007, 01:36 AM
dislocated my left shoulder last night - any windsurfers have advice on any aspect please? rehab? time scales? future sailing problems?

35yrs old first timer...

thanks in advance

13th October 2007, 04:11 AM
Hi MarkSW,
I am not a doc, but I have 3 friends that had that problem.
Two of them, use to dislocate quite often, sailing, swimming etc.

The other one happened twice and that was it.

Aparently, if it becomes a often thing, some people operate it, my friend did it, since his showlder used to come out to frequently.
In your case, which is the first time, I don't think you should worry much, and usually, if you get it back in place a few minutes after it happens, I think that you can go back to sailing normally the next day. However, if you had to go to hospital to put it back, then maybe you have to rest a bit.
What I told you, is what I heard from my friends expirience, but I think that the best thing is to call a doc or check out on the net about this.
Good luck and good winds,


13th October 2007, 06:58 AM
I have had this happen once. Very painful. Can you raise your arm above your head? Is is most comfortable to hold your arm at your waist? You may want to put it in a harness from your neck for a few weeks. It will take a full 10 days to get mobile again. Take something for inflamation...Hope this helps......Derek

13th October 2007, 11:39 AM
Hi MarkSW,

I had a severe shoulder luxation (dislocation) five years ago, while sailing at high speed, after six months I started to sail again (avoiding extreme efforts), and after a year I was 100% recovered .
In all cases you should see a specialist (a magentic resonance is essential in order to evaluate the internal injury) and immobilization and rehabilitation is generally a must.
For people older than 25/30 yrs surgery is not a valid option (except for recurrent luxations) because we have less elasticity than younger people (severe luxations require surgery in almost all cases for them).
From my point of view (Im not a doctor) one or two months of immobilization and subsequent rehabilitation is the key for a complete recovery, of course a lot of patience is required ( bear in mind that you must avoid recurrent luxations).
Good luck and go to see a specialist!!!


Ray Timm
13th October 2007, 05:13 PM
Carlos gives excellent advice, especially the rehab part. I dislocated my shoulder when I was 40 while kayaking. I kept it in a sling for 4 weeks on the advice of an orthopedic doctor. He felt that I would do the necessary rehab to regain my range of motion even though it would become quite stiff and weak. I followed his advice and haven't had another problem in the last 20 years. For years I made sure I didn't get it into a situation where it would dislocate. For some of the best rehab exercises, once you're healed, check the kettle bell exercises on www. crossfit.com. Nothing better than a Turkish Getup for strengthening all of the minor muscles in the shoulder.

13th October 2007, 10:06 PM
Sorry to hear about the shoulder. No windsurfer likes limits.

I'd say see your doctor (if you haven't already) and follow his/her advice. I can give you some of my experience (shoulder problems were not windsurf related).

Years back I had a full disclocation that involved x-rays at hospital before putting it back. This was followed up by about 4-6 weeks in a sling and several weeks of rehab. The 2nd full dislcocate a few years later was similar but by then, less immobilization time was encouraged. In between these times and after I had a few "partials" or I think sublexations (spelling?) where the shoulder went in on it's own. For these the recovery was only a few days or week of being careful. For each of these I still saw a doctor to there were no signs of complications (I believe things such as nerves or blood vessals can be pinched). These cases were not windsurf related.

One thing about a full major diclocation is tendons and ligaments get stretched and damaged are are generally never the same after. So the quicker it's back in the better. You're better off breaking a bone. It took a long time for things to "feel" right so that I had full confidence when the shoulder is in awkward angles. For full dislocations, I found that after the physio work that swimming made things feel right again - near 100% but not quite the same as my other shoulder. I believe this developed propreoception (sp?) like those ball exercises. To this day I do include a few shoulder specific exercises in my weekly routines to prevent a problem again.

So hopefully yours was only a partial. Still would be a good idea to see a doc. Either way you will get back to windsurfing.

14th October 2007, 05:19 AM
I did the same thing and I have a very loose shoulder. It pops out a lot. Since im 17, i would rather not have surgery if I don't have to. So I had physio done to both my shoulders and had a specific training schedual that I do. I strengthened and increased the muscles around the shoulder (especially the rotator cuff) and now i not only have a better stance and my shoulder doesn't pop out, but my pumping has increased too.

If you want I can give you excercies thatt are really basic and only require a 0-20 pound MAX weight load. it helps so much for loose shoulders and if you don't want that to happen again.

14th October 2007, 12:04 PM
Hi there,

I partially dislocated my shoulder on the 2nd August this year. Shoulder popped out and popped back in by itself. After 6 or so physio sessions, countless strengthing exercises and 2months later Im only starting to get back to normal. I went flatwater sailing (no waves) after 4 weeks using only small sails.

If you have had a fully dislocated shoulder, go see a physio, do the exercises and take their recommendation on when your shoulder should be strong enough for some light sailing. Its a real pain being off the water but sailing with no confidence in your shoulder is not fun either.


14th October 2007, 03:11 PM
thanks for all your replies so far.

it was a full dislocation and i had xrays before and after. it wa nearly out for 3 hours - it took them 30 mins of arm waggling and muscle relaxants to get it back in - very smooth no force - my body is in good shape from indoor rowing so now i can watch my body & fitness levels decrease for a few weeks.

in sling now and doing things like walking my fingers up my legs and chest - deciding which size sails to buy next...and sneezing from a slight cold

i am 35yrs and will look into keyhole surgery as confidence is everything in all sports

cheers, mark in tarifa

24th October 2007, 04:17 AM
Hi Mark,

I (Jeroen, 33years) dislocated my left shoulder when I was 17 years, after that it happens almost 6 times a year. Even when I was a sleep, and once on the water while windsurfing. After 2 years I had surgery and after that it never happened again. Lessons learned is, try no to start to early, and have a good rehab.

Two years ago, I had my other shoulder (right) dislocated with skiing. I give my self a good thought, and I decided that I need to rehab very carefully, I had a rehab of almost 6 to 8 months. First a give my shoulder a good rest for three weeks. A little bit to good for a rest, because it became a so called a frozen shoulder. The muscles where not used to move. But nevertheless I had some good fysiotherapist and I did some exercises for 4 months. After half a year I started to do some spinning, my shoulder was still not used against the firm held on the stering wheel of the spinning equipment. But after a good rehab I went for skiing again and the next season I was windsurfing again. I am happy that I gave my other shoulder this attention and not hurry up to get on the water as soon as possible. This is one reason I did not need to get some surgery for my right shoulder. Now I am still windsurfing (sea&waves) without any problems, but I try not to tire myself up with windsurfing.

Warp up:
That a good rest, don't hurry with rehab, start with easy exercises, keep at least half year rehab, do not to winsurf for many hours, keep yourself focussed on own possibilities, try not get to much tired while windsurfing.

If you have any questions, feel free te contact me.

Success :)

(my excuse for my bad English, I am Dutch)