Recovering From a Tumble – 2014

September 5, 2014

Back at the end of June, I took a tumble off of Poe and onto my head.  I mentioned in some blogs since then how I have had some trouble recovering.  I switched to riding Simon at MGAA Nationals, but was able to get back on Poe for International Pairs and Mid Atlantic #3.  Although I have still been having issues turning my head, mounting, dismounting, sitting and using my back when riding, and generally doing anything requiring my back (like rolling over in bed).

I did immediately get the broken teeth fixed, and found an amazing new dentist in the process!  Score (props out to Rocktown Dentistry and Dr Joan)!

I did eventually, about 6 weeks after the fall, go to my doctor, who had xrays done.  He reported that nothing was broken, but I do have a “reversal” in my neck.  This is where the spine in the neck reverses its curve.  Its not uncommon and although my doctor speculates it was caused by my fall, it is something that some people just have normally.  He prescribed muscle relaxers and physical therapy.

The muscle relaxers made an immediate difference.  I had not even realized how high my shoulders were or how tight the whole back/neck region was.  It took a little longer to get into PT, but it also made a huge difference.  I went into the first visit without being able to turn my neck, and left with a mild turning radius!

Its now been just over two months and I decided to order my own moist heat pad for home use, and am still doing the stretches and strengthening exercises.  There is still some pain and tightness, and some days are worse than others.  Mounting up still really hurts, and often makes my shoulders and upper back tighten up for hours afterwards.  Because of this I have been taking it very easy with my riding since the accident.  My ponies are not nearly in the shape they should be at this time of year, and my games skills are probably suffering as well.  But I am on the mend.

I was wearing a helmet, and my head was remarkably healthy afterwards.  I was wearing a Charles Owen Pro II helmet, and I know it did its job.   I filled out the accident report and CO sent me a certificate for 65% off towards replacing my helmet, which I did at VTO Saddlery.

It sucks getting older.  I am sure this particularly fall would have been damaging when I was younger too.  Launching at speed directly onto your head is never a good thing. But I feel like my recovery has been slower than it would have been when I was younger and my body was more resilient.  But you got to keep on keepin on!

(this image is stolen from google images and is not of my particular neck, but shows what is going on in my neck).





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