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  1. #51
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    I bruised ribs twice this year already.

    The first time was while snowboarding at Mount Rose Ski Tahoe (near Reno, NV, USA) in February. I was barreling down the Upper Lakeview run on my way to the Lower Lakeview drop-in when a boy of about 12 cut across my path on the KC Traverse. He completely ignored the warning signs to wait and look uphill, and he had headphones on so he couldn't hear me yelling at him. I started to carve hard so I'd pass behind him but he saw me at the last second and froze like a deer in the headlights. My two choices were to plow him or to eat it, so I ate it.

    I've never cartwheeled that hard before... truly jarring. My right arm ended up whipping overhand to go underneath me just as I plowed onto my front, right side. The inner ball of my elbow became a tool of destruction as all my weight came down on it. 2 bruised ribs low on my right side, good and proper.

    The second time was just a few days after I got my MTB in May, my first ever and also the first time I'd been on a bike in over 20 years. My friend took me on the easy part of an intermediate trail (the beginning section of Thomas Creek) but I still managed to get myself into trouble on a 6 foot long, 1 foot wide, flexible wooden bridge over the creek. I did not have good balance on the bike yet so I didn't line up for the bridge very well, and by the time I was half way across it I was leaning hard. My front tire went off the bridge to the left side and all forward progress halted. I spilled forward and the left side of my chest smashed into the stem. I managed to roll the rest of the way out of it so the only visible damage were some pedal scratches on my left leg and some mud on my right shoulder, but I had bruised 2 more ribs, this time on the left side.

    I treated both instances the same, and had the same results both times. I used Ultram (a non-narcotic pain reliever, prescription required) for the first two weeks, took one week off from strenuous activity, wrapped my torso with an ace bandage for support until no longer necessary, used ice for the first 48 hours and heat after that.

    In both instances I was back to business after a week although the pain was present in varying degrees for about 8 weeks. For the Winter injury I also used some padding along with the ace wrap because we snowboarders tend to fall face first when we go down hard and I was worried about aggravating the injury more than it had to be if that occurred.

    There are few injuries that are as aggravating to me as bruised or broken ribs. Can't sit right, can't sleep right, loss of range of motion due to the pain... all for nothing. You can't stop breathing and you can't be immobilized so there's truly no need for your ribs to be letting you know they're in pain... it's just useless noise, and it goes on and on for weeks.

    It's the price we pay to do the things we do, though, and I suppose it beats getting casted and having to lay low for 2 months or more.

  2. #52
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    A mile off the Centennial Trail in northern Idaho, riding along the river. White shepard jumps onto the trail and takes out my back wheel (but not my leg!). I pull my left leg up to avoid the jaws of the white beast, hit the breaks, spin right, bo over the bars in a flip, land on my right shoulder/right side. Can't breath for 5 minutes...

    Crushed shoulder (no break) and bruised ribs. That was 8 days ago. Ribs are sore. Should is sore. Knees are sore. Lower back is sore. Like everyone else, rising from bed is the worst. Bottle of Vicadin was gone a couple of days ago! Ibuprofin is managing the pain...

    With all the stories about ribs and collar bones, there must be a market out here for some space age rib-protectors. Know of anything out there?

  3. #53
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    I had a crash on the 24th of last year and till this day it hurtts to sneeze or laugh hard.

    I WAS wondering how u guys get ur confidence back after crashing now am some what scared oh hit big jumps.
    any tippss????
    My backyard is the mountains..

  4. #54
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    ribs are wicked, man, no doubt.
    I feel the same way you do after pretty much any significant crash, kinda like you've lost your edge, feeling a little hopeless, emasculated. your body wasn't the only thing bashed up -- ego, too, not to mention the refresher course your survival instinct got.

    for me, I found that just getting back out there again, but taking it easy, worked pretty well for getting back into it once reasonably well recovered. just keep riding. the confidence will come back in time. you'll find that once you get your rhythm back, you'll start pushing yourself again a little bit at a time. the series of small triumphs will get you going. just concentrate on having fun again though, and you'll be less likely to psyche yourself out. don't beat yourself up for the crash. everyone crashes. if you don't crash, you're probably not riding on the edge of your limits. or, you're just that good

    .02 for your savings account.

  5. #55
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    Quote Originally Posted by msgvb
    ribs are wicked, man, no doubt.
    I feel the same way you do after pretty much any significant crash, kinda like you've lost your edge, feeling a little hopeless, emasculated. your body wasn't the only thing bashed up -- ego, too, not to mention the refresher course your survival instinct got.

    for me, I found that just getting back out there again, but taking it easy, worked pretty well for getting back into it once reasonably well recovered. just keep riding. the confidence will come back in time. you'll find that once you get your rhythm back, you'll start pushing yourself again a little bit at a time. the series of small triumphs will get you going. just concentrate on having fun again though, and you'll be less likely to psyche yourself out. don't beat yourself up for the crash. everyone crashes. if you don't crash, you're probably not riding on the edge of your limits. or, you're just that good

    .02 for your savings account.

    Thanks For the tip.
    Am sure it would take a while
    My backyard is the mountains..

  6. #56
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    i bruised my ribs last weekend when i crashed my bmx. the lower 3 on my right side are sore. ive broken those same three pretty bad a few years back to where they are deformed a bit(caved inward half an inch more then the left side)

    it didnt feel that bad the day after and since then ive continued to ride. i commute to work every day and ive gone one 3 mountain rides a road ride and road bmx on monday. untill yesterday my ribs were barely even giving me any pain at all but i wake up this morining and can barely sit up. i cant really walk around without leaning over like a troll.

    i dont have insurance so getting xrays can be a real hassle. i dont want to go just for them to say theyre bruised. my breathing is pretty normal but maybe a bit comprimised.
    to the touch they are very very sore. im just scared i did something to make it break or fracture and now its pushing on my muscles and lung?

    i dont even want to know how much xrays would cost.
    worst part of it is i have 3 mtb races next month. two of them are in a week and a half. one is my first super d.
    i know its a bad idea but how can i feel functionable by then?

  7. #57
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    I took a thirty foot tumble off of a drop two weeks ago. My most obvious injury was a broken wrist, but my back hurts like hell where I think I rolled over a rock. It feels like muscular injury and last friday I was moving something heavy and my muscles there seized up. I got some massages to loosen that stuff up and it worked but it still hurts!!! Idk whats up with my back, I think I have bruised ribs but idk.... when I press down on the sore spots it doesnt hurt so much, mostly when I stop pressing. I start work tomorrow My parents are gonna be pissed if I have to see a doctor about something else (I'm 19, but I cant pay...I have some lousy insurance)

  8. #58
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    So did you guys wait to start riding until you were completely recovered? Or did you start riding after it was mostly better? If so then did it prolong your recovery time or make your ribs hurt more?

    Im 2 weeks into my bruised rib recovery. Pain is much improved than the first week (which was terrible)
    I did a light road ride yesterday and ribs hurt more than they had afterwards (and this morning). Im wondering if I should not ride or exercise at all until the ribs heal entirely?
    The mountains are calling and I must go

  9. #59
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    My sternum took at least 5 weeks to be almost better.

  10. #60
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    I bruised mine over two months ago and in the morning I still have to get out of bed carefully to not yelp in pain, riding is fine until I get home, then it hurts like a b. Take is easy and after it feels 100% give it a couple more days.

    Best of luck.
    Gene

  11. #61
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    Quote Originally Posted by CommuterGene
    I bruised mine over two months ago and in the morning I still have to get out of bed carefully to not yelp in pain, riding is fine until I get home, then it hurts like a b. Take is easy and after it feels 100% give it a couple more days.

    Best of luck.
    Gene
    yeah thats about where I am right now, but over 2 months thats a long time! has it just stayed like that for a long time?

    I can deal with the pain in the morning and while lying down, but Id really like to get back to doing core workouts, and I cant while the ribs are sore
    The mountains are calling and I must go

  12. #62
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    1st time down

    This sucks!!!! Its been 1 week since I endoed going super slow on a tight off camber switchback (Annadale, Lawndale Trail). I didnt even realize my ribs were hurt after I ate it because my knees and elbow were banged up. Like everyone else, the bed is my worst enemy and a cough or sneeze reminds me im hurt. The pain is bad, but only when im relaxed it seems. Its my 1st time down. I'm still kinda new to this super fun sport. From listening to most of the other posts, my bar end might have hit me in the chest.
    Couple questions:
    Should I ride or wait?
    I think Its #1 rib. Its the 1st bone below my collerbone. I have no Medical Ins. Has anyone buised this partical rib? If so, please tell me about it?

  13. #63
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    finally starting to get over my left rib bruise, went down on saturday and bruised the right ribs.

    im doing something wrong if every time i go down i bruise ribs.....
    The mountains are calling and I must go

  14. #64
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    Since this seems to be a pretty long list of people who have had rib injuries and I have injured the same rib twice this season(first time, partially separated fracture, this time, I am 99% sure it was just bruised ribs in the same area), I thought this would be a good discussion to ask vs. starting a new thread so here it is. Did any of you look into wearing protective gear after your rib injuries and if so, what did you wear? I'm thinking of this partially for psychological reasons as well as making the home-front a little less worried. In looking around, I didn't find much but I found this rib protector for motorcycles that I saw a cyclist mention.

    http://www.forcefieldperformance.com...protector/2350

    Has anyone used this or anything else? I've gotten on the road bike a few times recently and am going crazy not getting on the mtb so finding something that might help protect the ribs a little would be very helpful! Also, I wear a HRM when I ride so wasn't sure if that would interfere at all. I'm guessing it would not.

    Thanks again!

  15. #65
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    Thats an interesting rib protector. I cracked my ribs about two months ago and the hit was on a flat angled rock. Really caused more of a flat high velocity impact and not sure how much a protector like that could diminish the effects of a smashing hit to the ribs? Certainly would provide some cushion and protection against protruding items that might gouge you though.

    I managed to have two different rib cage hammering "get-offs" last weekend. The first was shortly after the start of the ride when I fell and re-injured the same ribcage I hurt a couple of months back. I decided to forge forward on the ride and darned if I didn't overcook a turn about 15 minutes later and down I went smacking the other ribcage! Man I hate ribcage injuires and having both sides injured is a real joy, especially when you lie down or try to get up. I am 52 and it usually takes me 2-3 weeks to get mostly healed and another 2-3 to get all the kinks out. Not much you can do but suck-it up and take ibuprofen now and then.

  16. #66
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    Yea, I was wondering that too. One review that I read said that it redistributes 75% of the force so that the impact is much less. My first was on the handlebars and the second time was more of a hard ground impact so it's probably 50/50 for protecting my ribs. Ended up hurting the same rib both times for me so I think it wasn't completely healed anyway. Yea, sleeping is still the worst! I haven't slept without waking up in pain/discomfort since March. Gotta love it!

  17. #67
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    I need armor for family peace too!
    Which rib for you?
    And please describe the level of pain for bruise and fracture.
    I had my wife rub my back a little(my painful rib is in my chest) and the next morning I have sharp pains where she mildly rubbed.(shoulder blade area) it's been 9 days.

  18. #68
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    The doc said it was the 7th one on my right side. The first time(fracture), I felt like I had to breath lightly a lot of times or it would hurt so breathing constantly hurt. It seemed to get worse, then better, then worse again and usually different each day. That lasted for 4-6 weeks. I didn't ride at all for 8 weeks which is when I felt the pain was much better. I couldn't lift my arms above my head the first 4 weeks either. Not sure if it was my mind or not, but at times, I could feel a sharpness to the pain too.

    The second time (my guess is bruised the same area), I have had no struggle breathing deeply and only when I breath really deep did I feel anything. I've had some odd pains throughout that side of the ribs that makes me think it was more of a muscular issue. It's been 3 weeks now and I feel a ton better. I have been riding my road bike lightly for 1.5 weeks and although my HR was high on the light-medium ride, when I rode up the big hill near my house(my test of how am I feeling), I was gasping for breather(thank you asthma), but no pain at all. That was last Wednesday. Of course, the next morning when I woke up, I hurt. That is pretty much the same in both instances. Waking up from sleeping is no fun. I have to be very careful in how I move as to minimize the pain as I sit up from sleeping. I am guessing the body just settles in and is in an odd position.

    I'm thinking about getting that protector in order to get me out there quicker. my biggest thought was to see if anyone else had experience with anything better. Rib injuries seem to be a very nagging injury. My first time this year, I never felt fully back to normal before wrecking again but up until that wreck, I was having a great time and felt more comfortable than before. This brought me back to my senses a bit! Hope that helps. It definitely seems to take a long time to heal and fully healing takes even longer. Good luck!

  19. #69
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    lots of rib protection options out there. there are shirts with low profile rib pads sewn in, used for football hockey and lacrosse mainly. I have one of these
    http://www.*****sportinggoods.com/en...eProductSearch
    (shoulder caps come off) it breathes well.
    shockdoctor makes a good one that I plan on ordering
    http://www.shockdoctor.com/product/c...act-shirt.aspx

    for thicker hardshell padding, you can look at football rib protectors, and kart racing rib protectors. kart racing protectors are most likely to be hard shell yet still slim. do a search for "rib protectors" on google, ebay, or sports store.
    it is now football season so you may even be able to try them on at your local sports store

    this is my next step, as my 2nd rib bruise came through a DH armor jacket AND the DNA padded shirt.
    The mountains are calling and I must go

  20. #70
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    Thanks for the desrcriptions mw.
    And thanks for the armor options Evan.

  21. #71
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    I'm in the bruised rib club as well. Had a bad crash last year and bruised a few ribs on my left side as well as strained intercostal muscles. It hurt to breath and getting out of bed made me feels as though I would pass out. I wanted to beat anyone who tried to make me laugh and sneezing was unbearable. Went to the ER two days after it happened just to make sure nothing was broken and the ER doc gave me some nice meds to make me feel all nice and relaxed.

    I was back on the bike in 4 weeks and finally pain free in about 6 weeks.

  22. #72
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    Today was the day 11 of my recovery from my endo resulting in some abrasions and number 1 and possibly 2 rib bruise. I went on a little 10 miler today and yes it was uncomfortable and a little painful, but no more than typing this, going to work, or sleeping. pretty much the same pain. There was a potential disaster at one point when my front wheel washed out, but I was able to unclip fast enough and plant my foot which hurt a little.Other than that I am glad I went. I actaully feel a little better.

  23. #73
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    Rib bruise - Day 2.

    Well this is the end of day 2 of my second rib bruising this year and it sucks as you cant do anything physical for a while. Damn you endo

    For those of you without insurance i think that if you dont have trouble breathing, and or arent spitting up blood, you do not require immediate medical attention.

    I find the only way to improve sleep is to immobilize yourself in bed, this also helps speed healing as if you rollover at night, not only will you wake up very rudely, youll aggrivate the bruise. Pillows at sides work reasonably well. I find the best pain killer by far is ganja(where applicable).

    Although ive been reading this site for a while and you guys helped me pick my new bike, this is my first post, go figure. Good luck to you all and a speedy recovery for those like me.

  24. #74
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    I am into my third week of healing after a second rib cracking this summer. This time it was two wrecks on one ride and cracking each side of my ribs so both rib cages have been aching at once. Arghh.. I am glad I am almost past it. My left side finally popped back into place earlier today relieving that gnawing discomfort. Just hope it holds this time. Usually I can lay on my back but not on my side but it has been ultra uncomfortable to lay on my back this time and the only way I have been able to sleep is on my side. You can buy a rib brace/wrap at the drug store that will help stabilize your ribs and help the healing process along, but the bottom line is just giving it time to heal.

  25. #75
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    cracked ribs, 12 weeks for complete healing.

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