Forums: Skydiving: Safety and Training:
Avoiding Neck Injury

 


ManagingPrime

Jul 8, 2013, 3:36 PM
Post #1 of 21 (5154 views)
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Avoiding Neck Injury Can't Post

I'm posting here, because I'm currently experiencing some of the worst neck pain of my life.

For as long as I can remember I've experienced neck pain at least a few days a month due to an odd sleeping position or the like. I've had times where I experienced neck pain for a day or two after a jump weekend, but nothing like what I've experienced lately.

Two weekends ago I had some pretty hard openings on a stiletto 120. That caused serious neck pain that had mostly subsided coming into this last weekend. This last weekend I made a few jumps and the openings were not as bad.

I've modified the way I pack the canopy and it has lessened the opening shock a great deal, however, I still swing/pendulum a fair amount on opening. The obvious conclusion in my mind is bad body position.

Question:

After some base jump experience I picked up the habit of getting on my risers immediately, obviously this has it's benefits in base, but could this be causing problems leading to neck strain on a fully elliptical canopy?

Working at a desk all day is more than likely a contributing factor as well. I'm going to start working on exercises to strengthen my neck and stretching before jumping. Any additional suggestions from others who have experienced similar neck pain after jumping?

Thank you for any consideration given. I'd like to get back up this next weekend, but the current level of pain is giving me some pause.


Premier skymama  (D 26699)
Moderator
Jul 8, 2013, 4:04 PM
Post #2 of 21 (5039 views)
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Re: [ManagingPrime] Avoiding Neck Injury [In reply to] Can't Post

If you do a search for this, I bet you'll find a lot of threads. Neck issues seem to be a common problem! I have posted about it; here's one post I made after a conversation with John LeBlanc about it.


BigMark  (D 17505)

Jul 8, 2013, 4:10 PM
Post #3 of 21 (5031 views)
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Re: [skymama] Avoiding Neck Injury [In reply to] Can't Post

If you look down at a computer screen all day, find someway to raise it up, made a difference for me.


StreetScooby

Jul 8, 2013, 4:27 PM
Post #4 of 21 (5009 views)
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Re: [ManagingPrime] Avoiding Neck Injury [In reply to] Can't Post

Went through the same issue years ago. Here's what I've learned to do.

As you're bleeding your track speed off, and wave off:

1) Sit up on your knees, don't stay flat.
2) Don't watch the pilot chute after it clears your burble..
3) Look hard at the horizon, head high, and arch through your lumbars, while you're still on your knees.
4) DO NOT WATCH THE CANOPY DEPLOY. You can feel what's happening.

Go to this site:
HealthBridges

Buy the #1 to start. Ride it 3-5 minutes per day. Be sure and follow the directions. This will make sure your lumbar vertebrae are aligned. Riding this board is not a pleasant experience.

Then, once you can ride the #1, go buy the #2 (after a month?). This will align your thoracic vertebrae. Be sure and use a large pillow while you lay on this. It's even less of a pleasant experience than the #1. Once you can keep your chin tucked and lift your head off the pillow, for me, that starts to align the cervical vertebrae. Being a male, do not bother with the #3. Only women can ride that one.

If C1/C2 are out, go see a good chiro. If you're in the San Francisco area (somehow I have that picture in my mind for you), go see Lloyed E. Latch here:

http://www.wellness.com/...-lloyd-e-dc#referrer

He is one of the best chiros in the world. If he's no longer practicing, see someone who trained under him.

Also, look into buying a pillow like this:

http://www.quill.com/...mc=SEM_PLA_CB_086972

That's all I sleep on, for years now. Makes a huge difference for me.

Think about upsizing to a 135, or even a 150. I jump a 150.

PM me, let me know how you're doing.


(This post was edited by StreetScooby on Jul 8, 2013, 4:29 PM)


ManagingPrime

Jul 8, 2013, 4:50 PM
Post #5 of 21 (4972 views)
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Re: [StreetScooby] Avoiding Neck Injury [In reply to] Can't Post

StreetScooby wrote:

As you're bleeding your track speed off, and wave off:

1) Sit up on your knees, don't stay flat.
2) Don't watch the pilot chute after it clears your burble..
3) Look hard at the horizon, head high, and arch through your lumbars, while you're still on your knees.
4) DO NOT WATCH THE CANOPY DEPLOY. You can feel what's happening.

Lot's of good information there. Everything is on the table at this point, I am looking into new pillows as well. It's amazing how pain can motivate change. lol

In regards to the quote above....

When you say "sit up on your knees". Do you saying to pitch in a knee fly position?

I've never heard of that before, but on an intuitive level it does seem to make some sense.


StreetScooby

Jul 8, 2013, 4:55 PM
Post #6 of 21 (4959 views)
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Re: [ManagingPrime] Avoiding Neck Injury [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
Do you saying to pitch in a knee fly position?

I've never really never tried to hold that position. As you deploy, head into that position. You won't reach it to the extent AZ Airspeed does, but you get the idea. The main thing is be head high/chest high, looking at the horizon, and arching hard through your lumbar vertebrae.

I went through a phase where I stayed flat, and watched over my shoulder until the canopy deployed. C4 would go out on a frequent basis. That would entail a lot of discomfort until I saw a decent chiro (...I've seen a dozen now, most are not worth the money, some will actually hurt you). You don't need to watch what is happening, once your pilot chute is clear of your burble. Get up, and watch the horizon. You can feel what's happening.


(This post was edited by StreetScooby on Jul 8, 2013, 5:05 PM)


speedy

Jul 9, 2013, 12:46 AM
Post #7 of 21 (4781 views)
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Re: [ManagingPrime] Avoiding Neck Injury [In reply to] Can't Post

I assume that you have been to a doctor and had your neck checked out. It could have been damaged by one of those hard openings.


jumpwally  (D License)

Jul 9, 2013, 6:04 AM
Post #8 of 21 (4647 views)
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Re: [ManagingPrime] Avoiding Neck Injury [In reply to] Can't Post

For you to be experiencing this pain, there is a larger issue at hand. Go to your Doc and have an x-ray done, which many times leads to an MRI. Once they have the pics they isolate the issue,,,if you are lucky it may just be the need for good stretching,,ecersize,,,etc.

This is not to be taken lightly...i had similar pain issue's,,long story short, i ended having a discectomy with no pain ever since.

Your neck is a big deal, don't ignore it.


Premier skybytch  (D License)

Jul 9, 2013, 6:29 AM
Post #9 of 21 (4629 views)
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Re: [ManagingPrime] Avoiding Neck Injury [In reply to] Can't Post

How many jumps are on the line set? Have you had the line trim checked? Many times a canopy that starts opening hard or "bad" when it hasn't been known for that is out of trim.

If you're going to keep jumping with a messed up neck, do yourself a favor and jump a different canopy. Preferably one with Dacron lines.

Smartest thing you could do would be to go see a doctor and find out for sure what is going on in there. Before your next jump.


ManagingPrime

Jul 9, 2013, 1:54 PM
Post #10 of 21 (4491 views)
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Re: [skybytch] Avoiding Neck Injury [In reply to] Can't Post

I don't know the number of jumps on the line set, but I appreciate you pointing that out.

It did occur to me that the openings have not been bad in the past and I just chalked it up to bad body position/pack job while only briefly considering trim. I'll have the trim checked this weekend.

Thank you.


jammindave  (F 666666)

Jul 13, 2013, 12:48 PM
Post #11 of 21 (4171 views)
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Re: [ManagingPrime] Avoiding Neck Injury [In reply to] Can't Post

If you are experiencing any numbness or tingling in your extremeties, pass on the x-ray and get a MRI sooner than later.


Keithor  (B 6692)

Jul 31, 2013, 7:07 PM
Post #12 of 21 (3571 views)
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Re: [ManagingPrime] Avoiding Neck Injury [In reply to] Can't Post

I got whiplash after a brutal opning that kept me from jumping period for a month. I saw a physiotherapist and the help was AMAZING. It was so bad I couldn't lift my head off my pillow in the mornings.

They not only helped me get back up again but they have also given me exercises to help strengthen my neck and back. It also was a big help that one of the owners is a jumper. We have since jumped together!

I have had many work and play injuries over the years and doctors almost always refer you to physio once they know what's wrong if nothing is broken. I almost always go to these people first now.

I hope this helps. Just to reiterate what someone else said. DO NOT FUCK WITH YOUR NECK. Just like your yes, you only have one set take a week or two to get better. The next hard open could keep you from sleeping properly for years.


tb182  (D 4226)

Aug 1, 2013, 7:09 AM
Post #13 of 21 (3448 views)
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Re: [Keithor] Avoiding Neck Injury [In reply to] Can't Post

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

I had a 3-level spinal fusion (C4 to 7) caused by a hard opening after many years of jumping and neck pain. My right arm was paralyzed. Returned to jumping 20 months after surgery and made 15 jumps and started to have pain in my neck again. The problem is the openings. I didn't seem to have much of a problem with mobility in my neck. Also have a friend who had a 3-level fusion who also went back to jumping and has since had another surgery. You have to weigh the risk versus the reward. Jumping is fun but so is walking and talking. I don't always practice what I preach.


(This post was edited by tb182 on Aug 1, 2013, 7:15 AM)


proky100

Sep 3, 2013, 10:56 AM
Post #14 of 21 (2886 views)
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Re: [ManagingPrime] Avoiding Neck Injury [In reply to] Can't Post

I have 4 herniated discs in my neck and after my hard opening I know what you go through. Try this.
http://neckpainexercises.com/2010/08/mckenzie-neck-exercises/
This is what keeps me from getting surgery. Good luck


mjlaw201

Sep 3, 2013, 12:37 PM
Post #15 of 21 (2784 views)
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Re: [ManagingPrime] Avoiding Neck Injury [In reply to] Can't Post

I've had chronic neck problems that made me wonder how long I could continue in the sport. I owned a pilot 190 and a safire 170, and both opened too hard for me on a regular basis. So, I put a pocket slider on 100 jumps ago and haven't had a hard opening since. And they don't take as long as my rigger said to expect. He told me the pocket would make for a 1000-1200 ft opening, but I put them at closer to 800 ft. Either way, I don't think I'd ever want to jump without a pocket slider again.


dwhenline

Sep 27, 2013, 1:29 PM
Post #16 of 21 (2265 views)
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Re: [mjlaw201] Avoiding Neck Injury [In reply to] Can't Post

I have wondered why jumpers dont wear a soft foam neck support while they jump to avoid that neck hyperextension? I have also thought that a "football" type collar that linemen wear would do the trick. would avoid neck hyperextension.
thoughts


airtwardo  (D License)

Sep 27, 2013, 4:31 PM
Post #17 of 21 (2207 views)
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Re: [mjlaw201] Avoiding Neck Injury [In reply to] Can't Post

mjlaw201 wrote:
I've had chronic neck problems that made me wonder how long I could continue in the sport. I owned a pilot 190 and a safire 170, and both opened too hard for me on a regular basis. So, I put a pocket slider on 100 jumps ago and haven't had a hard opening since. And they don't take as long as my rigger said to expect. He told me the pocket would make for a 1000-1200 ft opening, but I put them at closer to 800 ft. Either way, I don't think I'd ever want to jump without a pocket slider again.

Ted Strong recommended I use a pocket slider on the last canopy I ordered from him...I love it too.

No matter how I pack it or pull it ~ opens the same soft way!


Hellis

Sep 29, 2013, 11:11 PM
Post #18 of 21 (2000 views)
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Re: [dwhenline] Avoiding Neck Injury [In reply to] Can't Post

dwhenline wrote:
I have wondered why jumpers dont wear a soft foam neck support while they jump to avoid that neck hyperextension? I have also thought that a "football" type collar that linemen wear would do the trick. would avoid neck hyperextension.
thoughts

How much do they restrict headmovements?
It sounds good if we only talk about the few seconds of deployment, but there is the long canopyride too.
Giving people a reason to move the head even less sounds dangerous.


riggerrob  (D 14840)

Sep 30, 2013, 1:28 PM
Post #19 of 21 (1878 views)
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Re: [airtwardo] Avoiding Neck Injury [In reply to] Can't Post

airtwardo wrote:
mjlaw201 wrote:
I've had chronic neck problems that made me wonder how long I could continue in the sport. I owned a pilot 190 and a safire 170, and both opened too hard for me on a regular basis. So, I put a pocket slider on 100 jumps ago and haven't had a hard opening since. And they don't take as long as my rigger said to expect. He told me the pocket would make for a 1000-1200 ft opening, but I put them at closer to 800 ft. Either way, I don't think I'd ever want to jump without a pocket slider again.

Ted Strong recommended I use a pocket slider on the last canopy I ordered from him...I love it too.

No matter how I pack it or pull it ~ opens the same soft way!

................................................................................

Similarly, last month a customer brought me a Sabre 1 after a hard opening. It suffered 3 broken suspension lines.
I ordered 2 new suspension lines from PD and spliced a third.
Also sewed on 2 slider pockets (Weird Wayne's pattern).

A week later, my customer reported that "it opened as soft as butter."


Premier skydiverek  (C 41769)

Sep 30, 2013, 1:45 PM
Post #20 of 21 (1859 views)
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Re: [riggerrob] Avoiding Neck Injury [In reply to] Can't Post

http://parachutistonline.com/feature/hard-openings


riggerrob  (D 14840)

Sep 30, 2013, 1:46 PM
Post #21 of 21 (1855 views)
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Re: [StreetScooby] Avoiding Neck Injury [In reply to] Can't Post

"Health Bridges" look like the yuppie/computer-programmer version of "wrestler's-bridges."
If you have already suffered neck injuries, you are wiser to start with something like "health-bridges" and slowly work your way up to wrestler's-bridges."
You would also be wise to practice neck exercises - the first few times - with a physio-therapist who can teach you correct technique.

Bottom line: you can do spine muscle (stretching and strengthening) exercises now, or you can do those exercises later, but starting now is far less painful.

Take it from an old TI who has 2 herniated discs in his lumbar spine.



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