Getting Your Body Ready for Bow Season

Bow season is coming up soon, and PT’s across Michigan are getting ready to see some sprains and strains associated with drawing a bow.  Bow hunters are especially prone to shoulder strains when the season starts because they rarely condition themselves before heading out to practice.  Here are a few tips to get you in shooting-shape and avoid losing precious time during the season.  
Injury Prevention
1.  Start exercising important muscle groups at least 2 months before opening day.  This might come a little late this year, but keep it in mind next August.  
2.  Always stretch and warm-up the upper body before shooting.
3.  Ice any areas which ache immediately after shooting.
4.  If it hurts, don’t pull!
Injuries Commonly Seen in Hunters
   1.  Shoulder tendonitis/impingement- Toothache-like sensation in the shoulder joint, commonly caused by weak shoulder blade muscles; pain increases with use
   2.  Wrist or elbow tendonitis- dull ache in the wrist or on top of the elbow; caused by lots of small tears in the tendons which cross these joints
   3.  Low back strain- pain may be sharp, stabbing, achy, or just tight-feeling; many, many different causes; lots of different treatments
If you already have a sore shoulder, back, or other joint going into the season, meeting with a physical therapist can help you fix the problem before its time to start practicing.  To get started, call one of our facilities for a free consultation or see your doctor and ask for a prescription for physical therapy.