Shoulder issue?

Discussion in 'Injuries and Prevention' started by Combat Sports, Oct 26, 2021.

  1. Combat Sports

    Combat Sports Formerly What Works

    So my son is now about 145, 14 years old. Puberty is coming but seems to be slower then other kids. He has a lot of weight on the scale that seems to be from his skeleton, as he is not getting wider. The problem is, as a wrestler you are expected to compete with other kids your weight. And if you want to get better the advice is to train with people older then you.

    Anyway, I take him to a clinic with high school kids. (He is in 8th grade) and he is actually doing very well. He hits a John Smith style low single on a bigger and older kid who then tries to cradle him, and somehow sits on his shoulder? My son stops immediately and is in a lot of pain. And sits down for a while. I tell him not to go back until he is absolutely sure he is ok. Maybe 5 minutes goes by. All the pain his shoulder was completely gone. And he goes back out there and actually does fantastic. No issues with his shoulder at all. Not even during the push ups at the end of the practice. No pain on the way home. No pain getting ready for bed.

    Wakes up the next day, and cannot lift his arm past his shoulder without serious pain.

    Take him to a DO, who says they won't try to adjust him as they expect it is muscular.

    Going to follow up with sports med, etc.

    I am just scratching my head as to how this happened. If he was injured and still in pain I would not of let him out. We are kind of paranoid about injury at this point after what happened to my daughter. If something was broken or torn I would of expected it to continue to hurt?
    Grond likes this.
  2. Smitfire

    Smitfire Cactus Schlong

    Adrenalin and being active and warm can mask injury in the moment. The old advice of "walk it off" for example.
    It can be the next day that things start to properly hurt as things swell, get stiff, get inflamed, etc.
    I've certainly had injuries where I've felt a "tweak" during the activity but not enough to stop or impede me that much but then the next day be in more pain than when it happened.
    Grond likes this.
  3. David Harrison

    David Harrison MAPper without portfolio

    You can get extreme muscle spasm quite a while after something primes the muscle for it. It often gets kicked off by some innocuous movement after a period of rest.

    If there's no swelling or redness, and your son was shifting boys bigger than himself, then I don't see any obvious reasons to doubt the medical advice (although I'm some randomer from the internet and you should definitely get a second medical opinion if you're concerned). If there's anything more untoward going on it should be more evident once he gets more range of motion back. Has he been given any exercises to help get the muscle out of spasm?
    Grond likes this.
  4. Combat Sports

    Combat Sports Formerly What Works

    Yeah, the DO thinks he may of torn something in his rotator cuff. Unfortunately I am starting to think we may just be done. The problem is the kids who become elite all do so by wrestling bigger/older kids and I do watch my son get better by doing this, but I also watch the chance he is going to get hurt badly enough to be out for weeks/month at a time goes up exponentially the longer I let him do this. The truly elite kids seem to have the fortune that this just doesn't happen to them and they go hard with these bigger/stronger kids all the time and manage to avoid injury.

    The problem with the end game of this is it means unless my son can somehow get to the point that this does not get him injured, there is a level he will just never attain. And at that point I have to sit back and consider if it's even worth the sacrifice of his time and hard work and my time and money. Already have a child out for life who spent a lot of time/energy/money and has nothing to show for it in her future.
  5. Combat Sports

    Combat Sports Formerly What Works

    I am not really doubting the medical advice. And it's not spasming. Basically he went from being hurt temporarily and going back without any issues and no problems to waking up the next day with what looks like a tear in his rotator cuff. This literally just happened a couple days ago and we have an appointment with the specialist this Friday.

    Unfortunately this is another in a series of injures that usually happen in these situations where he is going with larger/stronger/older kids and it's just kind of understood in the sport that if you don't do this your kid will have a level of ability they will never reach. My son has horrible luck with this. Some kids seem to be able to wrestle godzilla and come away from it fine. I am starting to think we may just be finished. Already have a kid who is out for life who sacrificed enormous amounts of time and hard work (not to mention money) and has nothing to show for it due to stuff like this.
  6. David Harrison

    David Harrison MAPper without portfolio

    Unfortunately, that's the way it works.

    For every elite athlete there are hundreds of others who didn't make it, either because they couldn't win past a certain level, or their journey got stopped short by injury.

    Hard work alone can't get you to the very top, genetics and luck play a role, too.

    I hope your son's injury heals well. Has he talked about how he feels about it?
  7. Combat Sports

    Combat Sports Formerly What Works

    He was just getting excited about the prospect of wrestling in college.

    As I try to digest this issue I come to a few conclusions.

    1. "Trust the process" is a myth. Period. If it was a process you could put your kid in at the start of it and get a predictable result at the other side of it. And that's just not the case. Some of this is random like unfortunate events like injury. And some of it is random in what fortunes you have so far as partners, coaches, genetics, etc.

    2. Furthermore, the idea that you can just drop your kid off twice a week at practice and that this should be the extent of your involvement makes life less annoying or stressful for coaches, but is almost certainly a guarantee your kid will not excel. Most of these sports require meticulous and constant correct to do well at. No coach can offer this in a room full of 20-40 kids. And most coaches don't and won't spend the time a parent would on making sure to nudge your kid to go with the right partners and work on the right moves. If you are VERY lucky a coach will make your kid their pet project. But most of the time the pattern is that clubs are often formed around a coaches own kids.

    3. There is an element in these sports that is under the control of people involved but it's a constant political power struggle. Cliques seem to form everywhere, and unless there is a benefit for the kids/parents in those cliques to bring your kid into the fold then they won't be. It does not help that wrestling is a "team" sport wherein there is still an individual state championship. So if you have to screw over some people on your team to be sure your kid wins individual states? That's what people do. You have people on your "team" who are also your competitors, particularly if there is a varsity situation going on.
  8. David Harrison

    David Harrison MAPper without portfolio

    Sounds rough. Competition can bring out the worst in people, especially when it involves their kids!

    I hope your son heals up quickly and gets to wrestle in college, if he still wants to by then.
  9. Combat Sports

    Combat Sports Formerly What Works

    I think what makes it more toxic is that you are kind of forced to be competitive as your ability to compete determines if you are even allowed to participate since it's a "varsity" situation. I imagine for example BJJ gyms would be a lot different if only the best people in the room at every weight class were even allowed to go to tournaments the social environment would change quickly.

    We have the same problem with our Olympic teams in wrestling as basically people go back to their colleges to work on their Freestyle and are enemies until after the Olympic trials where they are temporarily allies if they made the team together. But when the next trials come around it's back to screwing each other over as much as possible to be sure you get the spot.
  10. Grond

    Grond Valued Member

    Injuries are just a fact of life in all sparring and competition situations involving two adversaries. Doesn't matter if it's boxing, sumo, or anything on between. But when it's just you, your likely to stick to your guns and recover. When it's your kid it must be terrible because on several levels it hurts. You see your kid in physical pain but also mental, and that can make you feel the same.

    But the doubt is just a figment of your imagination. I can't tell you how many times I've injured myself not just sparring but training and then you're sitting there for a week with ice on a limb or your back and totally in your own head, which is sometimes the worst place to hang out if you'd rather be, say, hitting the bag.

    I'm no life coach but I recommend using this as an opportunity to coach your son through injury, because I'll guarantee you those older elite kids go through their own injury periods, but what makes them elite isn't just skill gained but their ability to get through the hopefully short recovery and back to the mat, ring, etc.

    A 14 year old kids muscles haven't even fully formed yet, and if it's just a muscle issue it'll recover and he'll be stronger. Even a broken bone does the same. If it's a more serious injury (probably isn't because even adrenaline has it's limits) only worry about that once the doctor tells you. Otherwise most of the "damage" is mental. Your kid could have a college wrestling future still, but knowledge of injury is something of a combat sportsmans red badge of courage. Not only does it teach you to guard your body first and foremost (the key principle of boxing too), the memory of overcoming an injury is quote empowering. To think that as middle aged man I can still box after hurting myself every few years and coming back made me the man I am today, and people who know me are always impressed by this "comeback kid" aspect. A few have even told me they wish they could find that sort of strength and I just tell them "join a boxing gym and don't quit, that's all it is".

    Best of luck, dad.
  11. Combat Sports

    Combat Sports Formerly What Works

    I think generally what you are saying would be fine for most athletes. When you are dealing with scholastic sports there is a 4 year window that everything has to be lined up for. Once that window is closed it's over unless you get into college.

    We just got back from being out for 6 months for ankle pain that turned out to be some sort of "growing pain" and it caused him to miss all of last season. Just got everything lined back up and making progress again and this happens.

    The high school he is going to is one of the best in the country, so the pressure to get things finally lined up right is on. One final year to get everything working.

    When you are a varsity athlete, you really have no control over when you are expected to perform. There is a schedule and if you are not up for it then someone else will take your spot. I was not looking forward to this phase of things for that reason.

    So it's not just about a damage to his mental game which has been fine, or whatever it's a damage to his TIME. Not much left. It doesn't mean his life will end if he doesn't do it, but we have a lot invested in this and I have to evaluate if it's even possible. If he cannot compete with older/bigger kids without getting seriously injured frequently then there may come a point we just pull the plug.
    Grond likes this.
  12. Grond

    Grond Valued Member

    I lettered in volleyball. Sophomore year I was sometimes starting. Junior year during practice one day, I went up for a block and my leg landed on another kids ankle, and I suffered a severe sprain that benched me the rest of the year.

    Senior year tryouts, the coach has a 1 on 1 with me and basically says I can stay on the team, but I won't play much because my training was a year behind my peers.

    Didn't even consider it an extra second. I ended up playing a little here and there. What mattered to me most was not stopping.

    Whatever happens that seems like a ruined dream, pivot to inception. I'm not suggesting lemons to lemonade approach, but a way of telling your kid that whatever doesn't happen is just another opportunity to make some other dream happen. It might be wrestling itself, or maybe he wrestles cancer, climate change, or world hunger. Who knows?

    I never got a volleyball scholarship, or any scholarship really. I did learn to manage pain and disappointment thought, and those are worth something. What drives someone to wrestle (or box?). Something very similar, I think.
    Last edited: Oct 27, 2021
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