As surprising as it may sound, your arms might hurt after roller skating.
Arm pain after roller skating is mostly due to DOMS – delayed onset muscle soreness, which is thought to be because of your muscle fibers tearing. DOMS is particularly common in beginners, as their bodies are not used to all the motions skaters go through. Also, learn to fall safely to avoid unwanted injuries.
Soreness in Muscles Can Be a Reason
If your muscles feel sore after roller skating, it could be a symptom of DOMS (delayed muscle onset soreness). This is physical pain caused by exertions that lead to microscopic tears in the muscles. This soreness can limit your range of motion. Luckily, there are many ways to combat DOMS, as discussed below.
However, if DOMS does not cure itself within 3 days, visit a doctor to ensure that there is nothing going on that needs professional assistance. With that being said, DOMS is not to be dreaded; it is a sign that you are really working those muscles.
If you find yourself often experiencing DOMS, you can choose to fall ‘safely’ in the middle of roller skating. Yes, this is a thing! Even if your arms have protective gear on, you can still break bones of your other body parts and sustain injury to the head.
A safe way of falling implies that you surrender to the fall by collapsing down at your own will. This is a safer method than letting your arms and legs flail.
Similarly, f you feel an imbalance in your skating, you can choose to squat down. This will allow you to either balance yourself or sustain fewer injuries if you fall since you will be closer to the floor. This is a great way to avoid arm pain if you fall to the ground.
If even squatting doesn’t work for you, there are two other methods, depending on the situation you are in. If you are surrounded by people, you should not put them at risk by stretching out your arms. Land on your bottom consciously, in this case, making a fist out of your hand to protect your fingers.
If the skating ring is spacious and you have fewer people around you, you can easily land on your hands. In this case, have your arms slightly bent and lean into either the right or left direction, similar to a push-up position. Any rigidity in this method can sustain injuries to your arm.
If you fall, you might want to immediately get back up, although this will only be more harmful since your feet are tied to the wheels. A better option to get back up is to get in a kneeling position gradually, and bring one foot after another in front of you. Then use the pressure from your arms to lift yourself off the ground slowly.
Remember that whether you are a beginner or a pro, you are at the risk of falling. So make sure to wear protective gear, especially for your elbows and knees; otherwise, you may incur common injuries such as sprains or fractures.
Wrists are super sensitive, too, and any injury to the wrists can be detrimental to the movement of the whole hand. A great way to decrease this particular risk is by using wrist guards. They are pretty affordable and maintain the positioning of your wrist, decreasing the chances of getting an injury if you fall.
How to Avoid Arm Pain When Roller Skating?
Experiencing pain in the arms is unfortunately very common amongst people who engage in roller skating. Now that we have gone over ways through which you can minimize the risks associated with falling, let’s look at other methods that you can make a part of your roller skating routine to avoid arm pain;
A good way to start roller skating is to massage your arms beforehand. This can help relax the muscles. Your post-workout diet matters a lot, too. If you have the correct diet with a good balance of proteins and carbohydrates, your body will be able to quickly rebuild your muscles.
Warm-Up Before Roller Skating
Doing some light exercises before you start roller skating can really help activate your muscles ahead of time. This way, you will not force your body into sudden physical exertions, thus reducing the chances of getting arm pain.
Alternatively, you should also let the muscles relax so that they can heal. The blood flow to the muscles speeds up the healing process. This may take a day or two, depending on the intensity of your exertions. If you are healthy, you should recover quickly. If you don’t wish to completely abandon activities, you can engage in lighter forms of exertions, such as simple yoga or a massage.
Taking an Ice Bath
If you have already sustained an injury to your arm, you can try the RICE (rest, ice, compression, elevation) method by taking an ice bath. RICE, gentle stretching, a massage, or a warm-up – they all work great to help with the muscle fatigue in your arms.
An ice bath is a proven method for people who experience arm pain from roller skating. If you take one as soon as you come back, it will not only prevent DOMS but also help your muscles be more active for the next day.