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Can carbon booms cause arm or shoulder injuries?

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Created by Mainbreak > 9 months ago, 20 Dec 2015
Mainbreak
34 posts
20 Dec 2015 9:40PM
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A couple of years ago I got a caron boom and within 2 weeks of use I developed "tennis elbow" or lateral epicondylitis in both arms, I'm wondering is it coincidence or are they related. 20 odd years of sailing no problems, no other changes to my gear or other activities in my life. Carbon is a pretty stiff material and would transfer all tiny vibrations or could it be the narrow grip?
I'm not suggesting carbon booms cause tennis elbow as heaps of people use them with
no issues.
But I'd like to know if there is any correlation, so if people out there have lateral epicondylitis or any other repetitive strain injury, what sort of boom did you use when it started and what diameter boom arms?

JonesySail
QLD, 917 posts
21 Dec 2015 10:06AM
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yeah I'd be interested in hearing about this also,
same story here, although my Carbon boom was the new slim C shape (more wave style really, super stiff, great boom)
I'm really copping RSI in front forearm/elbow, especially an issue when sailing underhand front grip (which is my preferred). Can't say if it's a directly linked or a not.. could be tennis, Gym, SUP related...but did all those in the past too, no issues.

Have recently changed to a 'wider more traditional shape' carbon boom as my go to, the C will be the infrequently used, will be interesting to see if there is improvement in the injury.. haven't been able to shake it all year, has really effected by 'boom' tennis serve! haha!

ikw777
QLD, 2995 posts
21 Dec 2015 12:18PM
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I have a chronic shoulder with rotator cuff issues. Been on carbon booms for two years and about 6000km sailed and have had zero problems.

raggy
VIC, 564 posts
21 Dec 2015 12:20PM
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I guess there needs to be some give and flex? is it the same for knee's theirs only so much pounding before something gives

MikeyS
VIC, 1419 posts
21 Dec 2015 12:44PM
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I'm currently recovering from some lateral epicondylitis at the moment. Second time I've had it, the first time was maybe 10 years ago, when I was using aluminium booms. Not sure what the boom diameters are/were. I've been using a carbon boom for the last few years with no problems. In fact, it's less sore today after a high wind session yesterday using the carbon boom, but in the past sailing has certainly aggravated it. I suspect this current episode has more to do with mountain biking that sailing, gripping too hard down hairy descents.

John340
QLD, 1920 posts
21 Dec 2015 1:59PM
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I have just recently developed tendinitis in my left elbow. I changed to a carbon boom in February and had sailed over 1600 trouble free kms since the change, so I don't believe the two are related.

Orange Whip
QLD, 551 posts
21 Dec 2015 7:59PM
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I've had tennis elbow in my drinking arm now for a couple months, didn't even consider it might be my boom, sounds a better explanation for social circles . Anyone tried an ice pack for relief? (on the elbow that is)

TerryA
WA, 69 posts
21 Dec 2015 7:03PM
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Go To Physo, also known as golfers elbow.
I have it and now taking a couple of weeks off to sort it.
Not boom, more likely harness lines not it the right place
Mine started after a 100km + day

firiebob
WA, 2839 posts
21 Dec 2015 8:30PM
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I'm not a physio a/hole but me thinks

I've been down the golfers elbow road, not a lot of fun, bloody doc said give windsurfing away for awhile, yeh sure. Started thinking about it and realised my troubles started after a mate talked me into short harness lines, like 22" instead of the 26" I used to use. I went back to 26ers and my elbow slowly came good, I now use 30"s and haven't had trouble for years. If you already have long lines just have a giggle and say silly old bastard

Just saying, uncle Bob

Sparky
WA, 888 posts
21 Dec 2015 8:40PM
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Select to expand quote
TerryA said..
Go To Physo, also known as golfers elbow.
I have it and now taking a couple of weeks off to sort it.
Not boom, more likely harness lines not it the right place
Mine started after a 100km + day


Golfers elbow, medial epicondylitis, inside of elbow with palms facing sky, tennis elbow, lateral epicondylitis, outside of elbow.
Can be "triggered" by various things, can be "caused" by other things.

firiebob
WA, 2839 posts
21 Dec 2015 8:58PM
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Select to expand quote
Sparky said..

TerryA said..
Go To Physo, also known as golfers elbow.
I have it and now taking a couple of weeks off to sort it.
Not boom, more likely harness lines not it the right place
Mine started after a 100km + day



Golfers elbow, medial epicondylitis, inside of elbow with palms facing sky, tennis elbow, lateral epicondylitis, outside of elbow.
Can be "triggered" by various things, can be "caused" by other things.


Yep that's the one, not caused by you know what cos I never had trouble when young

Brien
NSW, 170 posts
21 Dec 2015 11:00PM
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I get golfers elbow on and off. For me it is triggered by a few aggravating factors, one of those is without a doubt skinny booms.

Mark _australia
WA, 18959 posts
21 Dec 2015 9:03PM
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A boom dislocated my shoulder but it had a lot more to do with an aloof level of stupidity, 38kn winds, board speed plus rotational velocity, height....... stuff like that

If you get a carbon boom and an ally boom and flex them they both move. Just carbon is a bit less.
Plus, nobody sails with a totally straight arm.
If you crash with the flexiest 1980's ally boom at the right angle you will fk up your arm. But normal sailing has lots of bends in all your joints so I doubt a carbon boom is any different to teak, or ally.

So I say no issue. Guesstimating...

Mainbreak
34 posts
21 Dec 2015 9:14PM
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So did the injuries arise before

Select to expand quote
ikw777 said..
I have a chronic shoulder with rotator cuff issues. Been on carbon booms for two years and about 6000km sailed and have had zero problems.


I dont understand that you dont have problems yet you have shoulder issues, which came first boom or shoulder issues?

Mainbreak
34 posts
21 Dec 2015 9:16PM
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MikeyS said..
I'm currently recovering from some lateral epicondylitis at the moment. Second time I've had it, the first time was maybe 10 years ago, when I was using aluminium booms. Not sure what the boom diameters are/were. I've been using a carbon boom for the last few years with no problems. In fact, it's less sore today after a high wind session yesterday using the carbon boom, but in the past sailing has certainly aggravated it. I suspect this current episode has more to do with mountain biking that sailing, gripping too hard down hairy descents.



So you have a carbon boom and lateral epicondylitis?

Mainbreak
34 posts
21 Dec 2015 9:19PM
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John340 said..
I have just recently developed tendinitis in my left elbow. I changed to a carbon boom in February and had sailed over 1600 trouble free kms since the change, so I don't believe the two are related.


Did you have the tendinitis before the carbon boom? And now its gone since using a carbon boom?

Mainbreak
34 posts
21 Dec 2015 9:21PM
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TerryA said..
Go To Physo, also known as golfers elbow.
I have it and now taking a couple of weeks off to sort it.
Not boom, more likely harness lines not it the right place
Mine started after a 100km + day


I've had the same brand and length and position of harness lines for the last 6 years.

Mainbreak
34 posts
21 Dec 2015 9:35PM
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Mark _australia said..
^^^ seems like you are cherrypicking comments.
He said he had it before on alloy booms.

Then I think IKW777's post is fairly clear. He has shoulder problem/s but using carbon booms after does not exacerbate the problem/s.

are u trying to mount an anti-carbon boom campaign?





No maybe im thick, I just didnt understand the answer and was after clarification why would I be anti when I own a carbon boom., your reply didnt really add any facts which is what im after, yours was just an unhelpful opinion, and I see you do love to banter.

Mainbreak
34 posts
21 Dec 2015 9:40PM
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From what I have read on the Internet about golf and tennis on this injury, it has increased with carbon raquets and clubs and thicker handles reduce the symtoms just tryinv to work out if the same might apply to windsurfing.

Sparky
WA, 888 posts
21 Dec 2015 9:47PM
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Select to expand quote
Mainbreak said..
From what I have read on the Internet about golf and tennis on this injury, it has increased with carbon raquets and clubs and thicker handles reduce the symtoms just tryinv to work out if the same might apply to windsurfing.


Nope, it doesn't.

byronmc
NSW, 424 posts
22 Dec 2015 12:01AM
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I had elbow pain come on from windsurfing and weights I was told it was tennis elbow. After 7 months of not sailing and it did not improve had all kinds of tests and injections went to another doctor who tested me and told me it was all rubish my nerve was getting pinched around my mussle ie it was to tight so surgery it was they just scallop a bit of tissue away to relive the nerve pressure simple pain gone and windsurfing 3 weeks later after 9 months off
Always seek a second opinion as one doctor wanted to cut my tendon all together alarm bells started ringing

boardsurfr
WA, 752 posts
22 Dec 2015 3:07AM
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I got tendonitis a few years back on a winter vacation, when we got tons of wind on the first day after not sailing for a couple of months. It slowly got better over time, but stuck with me for 14 months. It finally disappeared completely when I discovered eccentric exercises - 3 days later, it was gone (details at boardsurfr.blogspot.com/search/label/tendonitis). I still use the same exercises a few times a year, when I feel that the tendon acts up a bit. It never gets to the point where it really hurts, though. I could probably keep it away completely by doing the exercises every week, but I'm too lazy. I sail only carbon booms, on average 3 sessions per week, often 80-100+ km per session.

Definitely try to find a good physiotherapist. If he does not use eccentric exercises as a key element, keep looking. I don't trust doctors at all with tendonitis. My wife had upper hamstring tendonitis, and her doctor did not diagnose it correctly at all. The usual steroid pills helped a bit, but did not make it go away. Once she figured out what it was and she found the right eccentric exercises on Youtube, it was gone within a few weeks, without any pills or surgery. In a clinical study where they compared the eccentric exercises to standard physical therapy for tennis elbow, they cut the study short because it would have been unethical to withhold the better treatment from the control group.

John340
QLD, 1920 posts
22 Dec 2015 7:57AM
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I had

Select to expand quote
Mainbreak said..

John340 said..
I have just recently developed tendinitis in my left elbow. I changed to a carbon boom in February and had sailed over 1600 trouble free kms since the change, so I don't believe the two are related.



Did you have the tendinitis before the carbon boom? And now its gone since using a carbon boom?


I had the Medial form over 12 months ago, before I changed to a carbon boom and fixed with stretching exercises and lengthening my harness lines. As I said before I changed to a carbon boom in Feb this year. I developed the Lateral form only in the last 2 weeks. I'm confident it's not related to the boom type.

mark62
272 posts
22 Dec 2015 6:21AM
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I'm no physiotherapist or Carbon expert, but I doubt if a carbon boom would give any extra problems compared with alu boons, i reckon Carbon would cause less problems if any thing.

we are not fully hanging into our booms, our harness lines absorb most of the jolts etc and we are pulling against the boom, not pushing our weight through it. So no shock/jolts travelling through our arms, shoulders etc.

With Carbon bike frames or carbon forks you do feel all the shocks/jolts through your body, same with stiff carbon boards, you feel everything going through your body. But booms we pull against and harness lines soften things.

just my 2 cents worth??

sboardcrazy
NSW, 6488 posts
22 Dec 2015 8:49AM
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firiebob said..
I'm not a physio a/hole but me thinks

I've been down the golfers elbow road, not a lot of fun, bloody doc said give windsurfing away for awhile, yeh sure. Started thinking about it and realised my troubles started after a mate talked me into short harness lines, like 22" instead of the 26" I used to use. I went back to 26ers and my elbow slowly came good, I now use 30"s and haven't had trouble for years. If you already have long lines just have a giggle and say silly old bastard

Just saying, uncle Bob



I don't usually have elbow troubles sailing ( although medically retired with TE associated issues years ago) but I've noticed I'm aggravating it lately. I usually commit well to the harness but put it down to being overpowered and relying on my arms more- front arm especially-mostly pyschological. By gripping close to the boom I feel I can dump the power before liftoff . Also sailing smaller boards, larger sails and small fins in patchy conditions means I can't rely on the harness as well- just get settled then we have a lull so I need to take up some slack with my arms. I'm also not as committed to the harness as I'm not game to push on the fin a lot..
So I put mine down to sailing style changes ( probably bad habits ) .I use 30cm lines + al boom.

John340
QLD, 1920 posts
22 Dec 2015 9:07AM
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Select to expand quote
firiebob said..
I'm not a physio a/hole but me thinks

I've been down the golfers elbow road, not a lot of fun, bloody doc said give windsurfing away for awhile, yeh sure. Started thinking about it and realised my troubles started after a mate talked me into short harness lines, like 22" instead of the 26" I used to use. I went back to 26ers and my elbow slowly came good, I now use 30"s and haven't had trouble for years. If you already have long lines just have a giggle and say silly old bastard

Just saying, uncle Bob



I agree Firie, harness line length is the key. The longer the better, keeps the arms straight and you control the sail with your hips instead of your arms. I just recently shortened my harness lines by a couple of inches. I'll now set them back at 30"

Mark _australia
WA, 18959 posts
22 Dec 2015 8:19AM
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Mainbreak said..

Mark _australia said..
^^^ seems like you are cherrypicking comments.
He said he had it before on alloy booms.

Then I think IKW777's post is fairly clear. He has shoulder problem/s but using carbon booms after does not exacerbate the problem/s.

are u trying to mount an anti-carbon boom campaign?






No maybe im thick, I just didnt understand the answer and was after clarification why would I be anti when I own a carbon boom., your reply didnt really add any facts which is what im after, yours was just an unhelpful opinion, and I see you do love to banter.


You will note I deleted that reply 2mins later as in one of your posts you didn't criticise carbon. Your post above, in isolation, made it look like you were going all anti-carbon. As soon as you wrote the other things, I saw my comments were not valid, so I got rid of it.

MikeyS
VIC, 1419 posts
22 Dec 2015 11:05AM
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Select to expand quote
Mainbreak said..


MikeyS said..
I'm currently recovering from some lateral epicondylitis at the moment. Second time I've had it, the first time was maybe 10 years ago, when I was using aluminium booms. Not sure what the boom diameters are/were. I've been using a carbon boom for the last few years with no problems. In fact, it's less sore today after a high wind session yesterday using the carbon boom, but in the past sailing has certainly aggravated it. I suspect this current episode has more to do with mountain biking that sailing, gripping too hard down hairy descents.




So you have a carbon boom and lateral epicondylitis?



Yes, I also have a carbon mast and (improving) lateral epicondylitis. I won't trouble you with the past shoulder problems, now surgically corrected. Although, if I didn't have a boom, carbon or aluminium, I probably wouldn't have had all the dislocations.

I do think longer harness lines are much more likely to help avoiding epicondylitis in the first place.

tobyr
WA, 68 posts
22 Dec 2015 9:24AM
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Injuries are usually from overuse or incorrect use of affected area. I have found with injuries that it is the user and not the instruments that are to blame.

Start looking at the things you do in everyday life. you'll probably find it's something non-windsurf related.

I think as Uncle Bob said "longer lines" and really load that harness.

Waiting4wind
NSW, 1821 posts
22 Dec 2015 11:31AM
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I'm thinking of having some carbon joints installed into my arms and shoulders because the stock ones aren't working too well. :)

I've had tennis elbow and it came on when I took a year off work and spent most of the time windsurfing!!

My current golfers elbow has been brought on by an activity I do at work, so i have adjusted my work habits. It has had some aggravation from the windsurfing but I'm still making adjustments.

For my tennis elbow I did try all sorts of treatment, but I feel what got rid of it, was adjusting my harness lines so I took the pressure off the offending arm.



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"Can carbon booms cause arm or shoulder injuries?" started by Mainbreak