Straight or ergonomic shaft paddle for shoulder injury?

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Irish John
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Straight or ergonomic shaft paddle for shoulder injury?

Postby Irish John » Fri Aug 19, 2016 2:06 am

Need some advice on a new paddle. I had rotator cuff surgery 20 years ago and never had anymore problems till this summer. Perhaps it's just old age...Besides modifying my paddle style, would changing to a ergonomic shaft put less pressure on my shoulder?

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Mark Sundin
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Re: Straight or ergonomic shaft paddle for shoulder injury?

Postby Mark Sundin » Fri Aug 19, 2016 8:47 am

More than likely not, if paddling is hurting your shoulder the only way to fix it is to tighten up your stroke. A good coach will fix you up in a couple of sessions.

Grumpy
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Re: Straight or ergonomic shaft paddle for shoulder injury?

Postby Grumpy » Fri Aug 19, 2016 9:03 am

IMHO the greenland style paddle would be easier on a bum shoulder. However changing to a greenland paddle would likely mean a change in your paddling style. In brief I agree with Mark, first get help in adjusting your style and only then look for a paddle that will give you the most comfort.

Mac50L
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Re: Straight or ergonomic shaft paddle for shoulder injury?

Postby Mac50L » Sun Aug 21, 2016 8:52 pm

Irish John wrote:Need some advice on a new paddle. I had rotator cuff surgery 20 years ago and never had anymore problems till this summer. Perhaps it's just old age...Besides modifying my paddle style, would changing to a ergonomic shaft put less pressure on my shoulder?

My question would be, how long is your paddle? If over 210 cm, then obviously that is the problem. Other than that, as mentioned, a GP and if used correctly should force good style. The GP can be a bit longer than a Euro.

Also how high is your upper arm during a stroke? Below chin height with a high angle stroke? No? Then too long a paddle.

Irish John
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Re: Straight or ergonomic shaft paddle for shoulder injury?

Postby Irish John » Wed Aug 24, 2016 2:00 am

Thanks for everyone's input. My current paddle is a 220cm, carbon shaft/composite blade touring paddle. On a trip over the weekend, I changed my padding style to a low angle Greenland style which seemed to help some. I also modified the blade profile to a bit slimmer. Had not thought about the length issue. This weekend, I'll try one of the GF's paddles, she uses a 200 or 210. Would the blade profile have any effect?

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Mark Sundin
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Re: Straight or ergonomic shaft paddle for shoulder injury?

Postby Mark Sundin » Wed Aug 24, 2016 10:22 am

Mate it might, but a shoulder pain fix isn't something anyone can diagnose on a forum, nor should you put any stock on suggestions based on personal experience. If you go & see a good local coach, they'll have a good look at what you're doing, fix up your stroke, show you why a shorter shaft will straighten you up, and then you'll be right.

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Redback
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Re: Straight or ergonomic shaft paddle for shoulder injury?

Postby Redback » Thu Aug 25, 2016 1:09 pm

What Mark said...

I completely crushed my right shoulder in a pretty serious bike accident about 12 years ago and I still experience pain if I swim for long periods.

Paddling however, does not affect it because with correct technique, there is almost no stress on the rotator cuff at all.

My orthopaedic surgeon said I should never paddle again, but not being a paddler, he didn't actually understand that paddling is a body rotation exercise with minimal rotator cuff movement. Like most non-paddlers he thought of paddling as a sort of "windmill circular movement" with lots of arm (bicep) work.

As Mark said, see a good coach and there's a better than average chance you'll be able to paddle without pain.

Good luck with your progress.


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