Common Paddling Injuries

Common Paddling Injuries

Paddling is a great way to stay active during the warmer months! However, just like all other physical activities, there is always a risk of developing an injury. Unpredictable conditions such as giant waves, a rocky bend, or one wrong move can cause an injury. Just like any other injury, there are ways to help prevent an injury from occurring and ways to recuperate so you can get back out on the water as soon as possible. Here are three of the more common injuries paddlers face!


If you’re experiencing swelling, numbness, pain, or loss of motor control, you may have Tendonitis. Repetitive contractions of the muscles in the wrist, shoulder, and elbow joints can cause Tendonitis. Usually, one tendon will be affected by this. However, because many ligaments surround these areas, it’s not uncommon to have multiple tendons be affected.

Resting and stretching are essential to get you back to feeling better. Once you are cleared to return, you should start warming up before you head out on the water to prevent future injuries. Arm circle, torso rotations, and wrist extensions are all appropriate stretches to do to warm up your muscles.

Dislocated Shoulder

If you’re experiencing severe pain and discomfort in your shoulder area, there is a possibility that you dislocated your shoulder. Usually, there are more visible signs of injury. For example, one shoulder may be drooping compared to the other.

Depending on the severity, there are a few ways to treat a dislocated shoulder, including surgery, a splint or sling, medication, and rehabilitation. To prevent this injury from reoccurring, make sure you are focusing on your paddling form. You may even find it helpful to get a second opinion on your form!

Lower Back Pain

Lower back pain is common among most paddlers. Usually, lower back pain is due to poor form. The correct paddling form can improve your back health and make you feel more comfortable while you’re out on the water.

It would help if you worked on developing a stronger core, so you’ll be able to support your back better. Your strength to paddle should come from your core, and not your arms.

Once you’re ready to head out on the water, plan a canoeing trip to Mattice Lake Outfitters and Wabakimi Air. We offer excellent fishing opportunities and canoeing for the whole family. Give us a call at 1-800-411-0334 today!

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