Has anyone had the experience of calf-lower-leg pain AFTER paddling??? I feel fine when I'm in the boat, but when I get out and try to walk...extreme pain, lack of strength, and swelling of the calf muscle. I went to the gp, he doesn't know what it is. He sent me to an orthopedist, no answers there. I'm thinking it might be from reduced circulation when I'm paddling. Anyone had this kind of problem related to C-boating???
Posted on May 20, 2002, 6:34 PM
Here are my thoughts (and it's only $0.02 cents worth)
Is your whole lower leg swelling, or just the calf area like you identified? It sounds like you are outfitted in the boat comfortably and correctly in that you are not complaining of ankle or knee pain, which are joint issues due to incorrect leg alignments. Your description of discomfort and swelling in the lower leg extremities along with loss of strength may just be loss of circulation. If you have thick thighs (like me and several other really good c-1'ers I know) and thick calf muscles (which I do not have), then you could be constricting blood flow from draining OUT of your lower legs so blood builds up there because your arteries are not as constricted. If this is the case, I do not know how physicians can identify the problem since it is self-resolving once you straighten your legs out. If it is just your calf muscles, then constrictions on the blood vessels and/or tight calf muscles would be the issue.
Now for the tough part, coming up with a solution. If it is circulation and/or tight muscle related, then consider adding 1/2 inch to your saddle height, make sure your thighs and knees are not wedged in tight with your outfitting, if you have thigh straps then set them up so they pull your thighs outward instead of just strapping them down to the deck, stretch and massage your legs before and after paddling, and stick your legs into the cool river water as soon as you get out of the boat. Remember to stretch every day so you increase muscle elasticity which also improves blood circulation through the muscle tissue.
Keep us up to date on how things work out.
Posted on May 20, 2002, 8:31 PM
Re: Calf pain.....C-boating......
Unfortunately, I have some personal experience with this phenomenon while kneeling low in a canoe - not a C1 - for extended periods. My hithertoo strong and flexible calf muscles became very tight, and I paid the symptoms scant attention. While playing squash, I tore my right calf muscle very badly. Long rehab, lots of physio and a shortened calf muscle were the consequences.
So, here's another $0.02, not only stretch your claves, but maintain or even improve their strength and massage them reularly.
This also will improve circulation.
Posted on May 21, 2002, 8:09 PM
Keep the C!