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Common Pains Caused by Kayaking & How We Treat Them

Kayaking is a perfect way to enjoy the beautiful weather that summer offers. But, if you’re worried about getting “yak back” or paddling-induced lower back pain, Impact Medical Group of Tampa can help you identify common ailments and how to best treat them.

People who kayak frequently may suffer from lower back pain caused by the incorrect form. To remedy this, make sure to take lessons from a qualified instructor. Doing so will encourage good habits and build strong core muscles that support the lower back. Posture is also a critical element in preventing lower back pain. Kayakers should aim for a straight back with little to no leaning. When paddling, rotate your upper body and produce power through your core. The opposite can cause “arm paddling” which causes kayakers to lean and not move their backs. This can cause strain on the lower back. Stretching the body is a great place to start. The discs and joints in the body are most stiff within the first 90 minutes of waking up, so stretching before a morning kayak trip is especially critical to preventing injuries. Because it can be taxing on the body, stretching out your legs, arms and back can keep the body flexible while kayaking. At Impact Medical Group of Tampa, we offer personalized chiropractic treatments like facilitated stretches that can alleviate pain associated with stiffness.

Whiplash is a common injury associated with car accidents but in reality, can occur whenever the body is suddenly forced to stop. This can happen to kayakers when hitting a wall of water or other obstacles in the water. The quick loss of momentum can cause ligament and muscle damage in your back and neck. Our team can treat this injury with personalized physical therapy programs and spinal manipulation.

Just like the HR sign says in the office, people should take breaks from sitting frequently. This includes kayaking too. Sitting in the same position in a kayak for more than 30 minutes may cause joint restriction and dysfunction. This affects the spine by putting pressure on the nerves exiting from the spinal cord, interrupting communication with the central nervous system. Symptoms can range from pain and tingling to numbness and more. In order to avoid this, kayakers should stay close to land for regular breaks or work with a chiropractor to correct and maintain good form.

You never want a fun day on the water to be thwarted by an injury. If that happens, make sure to contact Impact Medical Group of Tampa to schedule an appointment.