In comparison to a painful but restful week 0 and a slower than expected week 1, this week saw the healing of my collarbone injury catapult. Over the course of week 1, I was able to start moving my shoulder and slowly regain my ability to do some normal activities like brushing my teeth and washing my hair. By the start of week 2, I felt sufficiently comfortable (and confident that I wasn't going to break myself further) to begin some self-directed physiotherapy, following the exercises recommended by the good people at the John Radcliffe Hospital - you can find these exercises in the hospital's extremely good 'Helping your clavicle to recover after a fracture' leaflet by following the link.
If you have broken your clavicle and have been able to take off your sling, I can't stress enough how important it is to start moving your shoulder in order to redress muscular tightness. It is amazing how quickly the muscles of the shoulder girdle start to stiffen up, how painful this can be and how long it will take to return back to normal. From talking to many other people who have had the same injury as me (let's just say I know A LOT of cyclists...), those who left their sling on for a prolonged amount of time (2+ weeks) not only took the longest time to recover, but suffered from discomfort on the side of their injury years (and in more than one case, decades) later. From my own experience, the muscular pain I felt when starting to move my shoulder after a fortnight was already quite enough. However, by diligently following the physio exercises prescribed, not only did the pain reduce by half each day, but my range of pain-free movement increased by half each day too.Read More