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Old 07-31-2012   #1
Wookie Kayak's Avatar
Herndon, Virginia
Paddling Since: 2012
Join Date: Mar 2012
Posts: 20
Shoulder Dislocations....

We have a paddler in our group with a bad shoulder. It tends to pop out rather easily. It has yet to come out on the river but as our paddling progress, I would like to have a plan in case it does come out.

In other activities, it isnt a big deal when it comes out. We just stop what we are doing and p[op it back in. This could be hard to impossible on the river in some shitty conditions.

Any feed back or personal experiences you can share is greatly appreciated.

Some question are:

What is the best action if his shoulder comes out while still in the boat?

Are there any considerations if we swims with it out of socket?

Can you tow a boat with a tether with a disabled boater still in the boat?

Any ideas on getting it back in without exiting the boat or water?

Like I said... this hasn't happened but I would at least like to have a plan on what to do or at least what not to do if it becomes dislocated.

As always, thanks in advance for reading.

"Its a 3 boat world out there"...
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Old 07-31-2012   #2
Ashland and Lake Almanor, state of jefferson
Paddling Since: 1997
Join Date: May 2009
Posts: 81
if it pops that easy, it'll go right back in. don't touch him let him do it.
that fake movie shit like slamming it into a doorframe, or someone pulling on it. is bullshit
he'll be swiming 1 armed till he gets it in. most likely floating on back tryin to work it in.
it's really not that bad, unless it won't go back. .
as for putting it back in??? everyone will slip it diffenrt. I go down with arm and roll shoulder up and wham O. it goes almost everytime. underwater,snowmobliing, drinking a 40 of PBR, bangin the girl. rowing the cat. i've popped mine every way you could,
but i never had anyone try to help me get it back.
something one has to do on his own.
just stay calm and hand him a beer after.

kaya dog is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-01-2012   #3
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 405
I pretty much agree with Kaya dog. The first time I dislocated, my friends tried everything they could to get it back in, and they totally destroyed my shoulder. I really wish that they had not touched me! After that first time, my shoulder was so damaged, that it popped out dozens of times a year, and I could always get it back in myself super quick, or it would just slip back by itself. It is unlikely your friend will be right-side up with a dislocation. Mine would pop out when upside down, trying to roll, right when I flipped, or doing a brace or boof stroke right above a class V rapid.

This is an instant swim. Trust me. You can not roll or paddle if your shoulder is out of socket. Swimming one-armed sucks, but what can you do? Your "consideration" in this situation is to help get him out of the water ASAP because he won't be swimming well on his own. Like I said, his shoulder will probably/hopefully pop back in on its own, but swimming will still be an issue even after it has popped back. Sublexations aren't as bad, and he should be able to paddle himself to shore after one.
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Old 08-07-2012   #4
mtriverrat's Avatar
Lewistown, middle of MT
Paddling Since: 1982
Join Date: Jan 2012
Posts: 222
I agree that if it pops out regularly - the person knows how to get it back in. We had a guy swim Crystal in the Grand with a dislocated shoulder. He did fine. You don't really swim a rapid anyway. You let the life jacket work for you. There's some good youtube videos that show several versions.
If you lean over to watch the river slipping slowly away beneath you, you will suddenly know everything there is to be known. Winnie the Pooh
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Old 08-07-2012   #5
Montrose, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2001
Join Date: Feb 2008
Posts: 42
Honestly, If your buddy's shoulder ligaments are that blown out he shouldn't be boating anything above a class II with a cooler of PBR. He's irreversibly damaging the cartilage in his shoulder joint every dislocation and predisposing himself to early arthritis.

Despite the fact that he's a valuable member of your crew, he should go see an orthopedic surgeon and pony up the dough for the surgeon to reattach the cartilage and ligaments that he blew out a long time ago (and are the reason why his shoulder is constantly dislocating). The ball of the shoulder isn't meant to be out of socket and it doesn't come out repeatedly unless something is seriously messed up. If he can't roll and can barely swim when this happens, you've got the potential for a really bad outcome for him and the rest of your crew with every section of tough whitewater.

Unfortunately I'm speaking from experience on this.
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