arm fracture - how to stay in shape

Discussion in 'Health & Fitness' started by Sox Fan, Dec 31, 2010.

  1. Sox Fan

    Sox Fan New User

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    I'm 44 and started playing again about six months ago after decades of not playing. Was really getting into it - bought a new raquet, a ball machine, joined a club, was really getting my game back. I was hoping to join a 3.5 singles league this month to start playing competitively again. And then....

    Two weeks ago I fell hard on some ice and broke my left arm - I am right handed (thank god) and it was not a bad break. Still, I haven't hit a ball since and will be out at least another 3-5 weeks.

    I am planning on doing some running starting next week and maybe take practice swings in my basement daily to maintain the feel for the raquet and my strokes. I hoping to lose as little ground as possible - any other thoughts on what I can do while my arm heals?
     
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  2. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Might be a little more specific than "broke my left arm".
    If you got a cast, you can still hit, but not full out power hitting.
    If you got surgery, then a cast, maybe you should heal first, then hit.
    If it's a greenstick, go for it.
    If it's a compound, you wouldn't be thinking of hitting any tennis ball.
    This from a guy who's broken collarbones 4 times, fingers more than 4 times, legs 3 times, arms 3 times, and more ribs than anyone short of EvelKnievel.
     
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  3. Sox Fan

    Sox Fan New User

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    Fractured the end of the radius bone where it meets the elbow - a crack. Bone doc recommended no cast, just a sling. He said overall recovery will be faster without a cast - i just need to be careful with it, etc. It feels quite a bit better already and I hit a one handed backhand. But, I can't rotate my left hand without pain and can't fully stratighten the arm yet. Whole elbow area still sore also. Follow up appointment with new set of x-rays next week.
     
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  4. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    I'd hit the wall until you can run.
     
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  5. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    To clarify....
    Running is the final test of your overall fitness and health. If some part of you cannot take the impact or the repetition of running, you have no business going out on the courts and trying to hit tennis balls. Yes, there is lots of impact in running. Your cracked elbow can feel all that up and down jarring. Just like on a tennis court.
    It's a bummer to abstain from tennis when it's your left elbow, but healing is most important and first/foremost. You have the rest of you life to play tennis.
    As a counter, I've surfed, windsurfed, and raced two motocross races within 20 days of completely fracturing my clavicals. That's one sport per clavical break...:):)
    OTOH, after a 13 month cast from tib/fib compound which required 11 pins, a plate, and about a foot of wire, skin graft and infection, I went surfing 5 days after the cast removal, my leg skinnier than my arms (and I'm skinny, at 5'11" and 130lbs then). OceanBeachSanFrancisco, 5-6' tubing and spitting, crutches down to the water's edge, my bud carrying my board. Wasn't pretty, but I survived.
     
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  6. OldButGame

    OldButGame Hall of Fame

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    Stationary bike would help maintain cardiovascular as well as legs, (for that matter so would elliptical). I agree with Lee, impact stuff wouldnt be great for healing to happen quickly.
     
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  7. Sox Fan

    Sox Fan New User

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    Thank you for the feedback.

    Maybe I will just focus on getting fully healed and maybe losing the 10-15 pounds I need to get rid of during the same time.
     
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  8. fuzz nation

    fuzz nation Legend

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    Bit of a different scenario, but my Dad tried to keep doing things while mending a broken wrist and that only earned him a bigger cast, some hardware, and even more healing time. If you've got to slow down for a little while, so be it. The great news is that the Aus. Open will be on in a couple more weeks to give you some withdrawal relief.

    No argument against something like a stationary bike, even a recumbent, to burn off some of the holiday indulgence. That should also give you a lot better strength and stability in your knees (and legs in general) for when you get back out on the courts. Some yoga might be useful, too. As long as you don't need to put any pressure on that elbow, you ought to be able to use some positions and exercises to significantly improve your balance over the span of several weeks.

    Consider that lots of tennis players have trouble making extra time for other fitness efforts away from the courts. You may be able to get a jump on some of this stuff since your game is on hold for now. If you're wintering over like a lot of us right now, this is actually the best time to get crackin' on some of that "other stuff".
     
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  9. charliefedererer

    charliefedererer Legend

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    As you get in better shape from your running, consider adding in some sprints and "High Intensity Interval Running" (HIIT). To run fast, your neuromuscular units have to be stressed with running as fast as you can to make more gains. You might be pleasantly surprised at how much fun it feels to really run like a kid again.

    Tennis involves a lot of starts, stops and changes in direction. Consider doing agility exercises: http://www.sport-fitness-advisor.com/tennis-training.html

    Help prevent the all too common overuse injuries of the shoulder, elbow and wrist by doing the thrower's ten: http://www.asmi.org/SportsMed/throwing/thrower10.PDF

    For an overview of all the work a comprehensive off court tennis training program entails, check out the Sports Fitness Advisor tennis training section: http://www.sport-fitness-advisor.com/tennis-training.html
     
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