Archery is considered the safest sport, but you must know a few facts about Archery neck injuries. To be aware of archery neck risks, look at the Oslo Sports Trauma Research Centre survey. It says that Archers are more prone to upper-body injuries than any other category of athletes.
You need not be tense. Instead, you need to be aware of archery neck injuries. And for the same reason, this article deals with four archery neck injuries, their major causes, symptoms, and prevention.
What are the reasons for upper-body injuries in archery?
Neck tension is the severest and most common painful upper-body injury.
- Repetitive muscles activity
- Underrated archery techniques
- Poor physique strength
- Excessive use of upper muscles
Types of Archery neck injuries and their prevention:
1) Rotator Cuff Injury
A rotator cuff is a group of 4 muscles located around the shoulder joint. This area of the uppermost body is naturally prone to injuries while practicing archery.
As an archer, when you draw in your bow consistently, extra pressure is exerted on the rotator cuff muscles and thus strains these muscles.
- Dull aching pain in the shoulder
- Restricted range of shoulder motion
- Use of comfortable stance
- Regular exercise of the rotator cuffs
- Ask your coach to suggest a stance for proper bow-drawing technique
- Take a break and relax the rotator cuff muscles
2) Repetitive Strain Injury ( RSI)
Repetitive movements and overuse of muscles and tendons are the main causes you might suffer from RSI.
RSI is most common in archer’s firearms and elbows; however, you might get in the neck and shoulders.
- Pain and aching neck
- Throbbing and swelling in the affected area
- You are suggested to take regular breaks from the long or repetitive task
- With the use of good quality equipment and accessories, you can prevent RSI
- Invest in custom bowstrings as it ensures less strain and improves stability and consistency of archers
3) Upper Trapezius Muscle Pain
Archery muscles especially, should muscle help an archer draw the bow. The trapezius is one of the primary archery muscles which helps in the recovery of the bow. Thus, overuse of Trapezius Muscle can cause severe Archery neck injuries.
- Too much use of upper trapezius muscles
- Poor archery draw-in techniques
- Weak upper trapezius muscles
- Neck pain and stiffness in the shoulder
- Sore or aching sensations
- Weakness in arms
- The key point to correctly draw the bow is to rely upon the lower trapezius
- Use levator scapulae for proper recurve bow
- Early shooters are advised to practice using a band instead of the bow to minimize the draw in.
- Seek coach’s help to learn the proper technique, i.e., alignment of shoulder to pull the band without the engagement of upper neck muscles.
4) Adhesive Capsulitis (Frozen Shoulder )
As an archer, Frozen Shoulder is one of the common Archery neck injuries.
If you are already in a recovery stage from restricted arm movement conditions, Frozen is likely to appear.
- Stiffness in shoulder joint
- Pain in the neck
- Limited motion in the shoulder
- Gentle exercise and physical therapy are helpful in the prevention of Adhesive Capsulitis.
- You are advised to adopt Pendulum Stretch and towel stretch exercises to get a quick recovery.
So, these are several four types of common Archery Neck Injuries. They all can be cured by analyzing their symptoms and taking prevention accordingly.