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View Full Version : Maria's Injury - How worrying?


xan
Sep 24th, 2005, 11:33 PM
I'm getting rather worried by this recurring pectoral muscle injury of Maria's.

It's now caused her to drop out of China and LA tournaments. The fact that it first showed itself in Zurich last year, and keeps on coming back, is worrying. It seemed to be gone after Zurich. Maria won the YEC and did well all the way to Wimbledon. Then it recurs at LA this summer.

Apparently Maria had a scan that showed nothing serious amiss. But she now says it was still niggling at the US Open. And it has come back to ruin her tournament in Beijing.

So what is it?

A muscle strain shouldn't keep recurring, and it seems to be painful enough to stop her playing. Is it something more serious like an undiagnosed tear? Hopefully not. I think she needs to find out exactlty what the problem is.

What should Maria do? She is scheduled to play Filderstadt, Moscow, Philadelphia and the YEC. If she doean't play these, she can say goodbye to No 1 for a while. Moscow and the YEC are certainly important for her.

I think she might be better cutting Filderstadt and Philly to rest the muscle, and seeing if she is fit for the other two. Long term I think she needs some gentle strength work and amino-acid supplements to strengthen the muscles she keeps straining. if she can hit as hard without straining as much, it would be better.

morningglory
Sep 24th, 2005, 11:42 PM
.................................................. .................................................. ............
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....... hope it doesn't turn out to be anything career-ending :sobbing:

andrewbroad
Sep 25th, 2005, 02:33 AM
I fear that Maria's right pectoral muscle is going to be an ongoing problem for her throughout her career (just as Monica Seles (http://www.geocities.com/andrewbroad/tennis/seles/) is plagued by a recurring stress-fracture in her left foot, which would keep her out of action for six months at a time - currently 28 months and counting).

Well I don't think Maria's injury is that serious, but I do fear that it is worse than first feared, and it's not a good feeling that it could flare up again at any time.

--
Dr. Andrew Broad
http://www.geocities.com/andrewbroad/ (http://www.geocities.com/andrewbroad/)
http://www.geocities.com/andrewbroad/tennis/ (http://www.geocities.com/andrewbroad/tennis/)
http://www.geocities.com/andrewbroad/tennis/shara/ (http://www.geocities.com/andrewbroad/tennis/shara/)

http://groups.yahoo.com/group/sizzlingsharapova/ (http://groups.yahoo.com/group/sizzlingsharapova/)
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/jeldani/ (http://groups.yahoo.com/group/jeldani/)

Sharapova's_Boy
Sep 25th, 2005, 08:36 AM
:sad:

Andy.
Sep 25th, 2005, 11:33 AM
Well i hope there is something that can be done and it doesnt become a chronic problem.

Doc
Sep 25th, 2005, 12:21 PM
Hopefully there's no need to be so pessimistic. Muscle injuries can mend almost perfectly - stress bone fractures are generally quite a bit worse.

Maria had a period free of injury from Philadelphia 04 to LA 05 - that's about eight months. So it looks as if this is a recurrence, rather than the same injury. She needs to build her over-all strength and see if there are changes to her technique that will stop this coming back.

!!!--Duiz™--!!!
Sep 25th, 2005, 06:47 PM
:sad:

Maria..

Maria Croft
Sep 25th, 2005, 07:47 PM
Maria should take care of this, but I'm afraid there is not much she can do about it if it comes and goes, I'm afraid this will be one of those injuries that will be there her whole career, it will cost her a few tournaments here and there but I don't think it's going to be something really serious, at least that's what I think and hope

I hope Maria takes some time and doesn't play Filderstadt, I want her to play Moscow but she shouldn't if she isn't feeling 100%, I don't think that Maria has gotten one bit of rest at all to get rid of any of her injuries, maybe now is the time to do it, no more slams this year and she's already the number 1 player, I don't want this to be something serious in the future and I'm sure neither does Maria, right now we don't know much, she didn't have any time to rest after the US open and I hope she can get rid of it with a couple of weeks rest

Feel better Maria!

xan
Sep 26th, 2005, 12:03 AM
Having looked up some details of muscle pulls, strains and tears in athletics, it would appear that such injuries are not usually career-ending. They occur regularly in most sports. The severer forms, including full muscle tears occur more in heavy sports like rugby and weightlifting. Even these can be fully cured (often by by surgery) and then several weeks rest followed by exercise in a few months.

Maria has not shown anything so serious as a full muscle or even a partial muscle tear that would require surgery. So the treatment is generally, rest, ice treatments, pressure and elevation of the affected bodypart for a few days. This normally produces full healing in ten days to three weeks.

It seems likely that the recurrence in August was a fresh strain. However getting these strains is a sign of muscle weakness. In other words, Maria's shoulder muscles are not strong enough for the effort she is using and the pressure she is putting on them. If she doesn't work to strenghten her arm and shoulder muscles long term, such injuries will recur. I've wondered about this for some time, since Maria's arms and shoulders seem rather slender.

I think Maria has to cure this, and then do some steady work to build up her arm and shoulder muscles, so such injuries do not re-occur.

Andy.
Sep 26th, 2005, 12:07 AM
Thats good to hear. As she put it is has to do with growth and progress so hopefully once she is fully developed and she has worked on strengthening that region it should not be as much of a problem.

Maria Croft
Sep 26th, 2005, 08:36 AM
That's good to hear, but Maria is still growing, so it will take some time before she can really train her shoulder muscles more

Get better soon Maria!

~lollipop_girl~
Sep 26th, 2005, 10:17 AM
Muscles strains can become permenant problems. I don't know if it would be different for a pectoral muscle, but I suffer from a lower back muscle strain which I've been told will stay with me for the rest of my life without easing up & I'm only 16! I'm not saying that Maria's pectoral muscle will become a continuous issue just that there is a chance that she will have to deal with the pain it brings in matches alot in the future! It is really hard seeing such a young player have to handle a recurring injury, especailly when it's a player of Maria's calibre!

Doc
Sep 26th, 2005, 04:07 PM
I think Maria will have stopped growing by now!

xan
Sep 26th, 2005, 10:40 PM
Muscles strains can become permenant problems. I don't know if it would be different for a pectoral muscle, but I suffer from a lower back muscle strain which I've been told will stay with me for the rest of my life without easing up & I'm only 16! I'm not saying that Maria's pectoral muscle will become a continuous issue just that there is a chance that she will have to deal with the pain it brings in matches alot in the future! It is really hard seeing such a young player have to handle a recurring injury, especailly when it's a player of Maria's calibre!

I take your point, although back problems are often complex, and a whole category on their own. They are usually far more intractable than problems elsewhere!

With normal muscle injuries, they tend to become serious when there is a major unoperated tear, or were a tear produces scar tissue which is then badly stressed before it can heal. The scan in August didn't show a tear at all, so damage to the muscle should hopefully only be minor.

!!!--Duiz™--!!!
Sep 27th, 2005, 02:58 AM
:p

Dan23
Sep 27th, 2005, 08:58 AM
I dont think its overly worrying yet but if it goes on it could become a problem. As someone said before it seems Maria's arm muscles arent as strong as they need to be to do what she asks of them during a match. I know she'd be doing everything she can to be strengthening them but its hard when shes been growing still and its a struggle to put on any muscle. Hopefully as her growing slows down/stops she can strengthen those muscles before any permanent damage is done.

Maria Croft
Sep 27th, 2005, 09:52 AM
I think Maria will have stopped growing by now!


I hope so

Doc
Sep 27th, 2005, 04:05 PM
I hope so

I didn't expect this latter growth spurt. Most girls reach their full height by around 16-17. But the growth will have stretched and weakened her muscles. I hope that from now on she will be able to consolidate and strengthen them as she grows into her frame.

Sharapower
Sep 28th, 2005, 03:43 PM
Any update on her health ? Will she be able to play Moscow ?

Sweep
Sep 28th, 2005, 04:57 PM
Hopefully when this growth spurt ends she will remain healthy and that the injury won't ruin her career.

Dan23
Sep 29th, 2005, 12:39 AM
No word yet on Moscow but its interesting to read quotes about the ending of the match. It seems Maria would have gone on with the match (like she did against Anna C) and didnt want to retire.

Andy.
Sep 29th, 2005, 07:42 AM
I like the fact that she would have liked to have gone on but her injury and health must take priority.

!!!--Duiz™--!!!
Sep 29th, 2005, 07:44 AM
Maria :sad:

I hope nothing bad happens... stupid Norm...

Sharapower
Oct 3rd, 2005, 02:11 PM
I always found that Maria's forehand technique could be largely improved; IMO she's using too much arm and not enough shoulder rotation and body-weight. That might have something to do with that injury.

xan
Oct 4th, 2005, 12:18 AM
I always found that Maria's forehand technique could be largely improved; IMO she's using too much arm and not enough shoulder rotation and body-weight. That might have something to do with that injury.

Someone else said that recently. But presumably people like Lansdorp and Bollettieri know what they're doing....?

Dan23
Oct 4th, 2005, 12:30 AM
There was a discussion about it after the USO. Everyones forehand is different and Maria's may not be as beautifully organised as her backhand but its deadly when she got rythmn on it. Its always been front on times with a lot of arm as you say, its amazing some of the balls shes hits from that position but I can see it putting a lot of strain on her muscles which could be why its hard to shake the injury. I also think shes maybe been favouring her muscle recently which has affected the shot, sometimes trying to flick the ball rather than swing fully and putting more effort in for less result, which would be a natural reaction when carrying a pec injury.

Andy.
Oct 4th, 2005, 01:16 AM
She soes have a bit of an unorthadox swing on the forehand on some shots but she is able to produce some amazing shots from that. I hope with further training and physio she will be OK in the future.

Sharapower
Oct 4th, 2005, 11:50 AM
I was not questionning the efficiency of the shot. Just that it's likely to overuse the muscles around her cute right breast ...

Dan23
Oct 4th, 2005, 12:57 PM
Yea I tend to agree...serving isnt the best for it either. Its hard to allow for a full recovery when she cant take any more than a week or 2 off at a time.

Sharapower
Oct 4th, 2005, 01:45 PM
Someone else said that recently. But presumably people like Lansdorp and Bollettieri know what they're doing....?

Well... Sure they know what they're doing as far as making someone win is concerned but, as they are no physotherapists or doctors, nothing guarantees that this is not detrimental to physical health concerns, I guess.

To give a complete picture, that forehand with motion-ending over the head is a Lansdorp speciality, you can observe the same with his other trainees (Sampras, Davenport, mainly ). It is normally a motion to be used when you're a little bit out of position after a crosscourt shot of your opponent and cannot hit the ball while it's still at 0.50/1 meter in front of you. But I do think Maria uses it too frequently, I wouldn't be surprised if 50% of her forehands are hit that way, even when she's at the middle of the baseline. Probably her concern is to keep her feet level to that baseline and not behind, in order to strike as early as possible, so she can't take time for adjustment. For the same reason her torso is often vertical or slightly leaning backwards during and after the shot, while it should be rather leaning forward (transfering the weight of the body).

Her tactic is very efficient anyway, but as far as it is used permanently, I think it's not healthy.

Steve-o
Oct 4th, 2005, 07:31 PM
I think this pectoral injury is connected to her forehand technique. The way her racket head goes way back over her right shoulder puts real strain on this muscle. I was having a knockabout with my little bro the other day and I was trying to use maria's technique and after about 5 minutes it was so uncomfortable I had to stop. I know I haven't trained to play that way but I just feel her forehand isn't a natural stroke and it's putting extra strain on that muscle.

I'm not worried long-term for Maria because she's still growing and she will get a lot stronger in that area. It is a concern that it keeps coming back though!