Absent from the courts since November 17 due to a rupture of the labrum of the right shoulder (SLAP injury) that required surgical intervention, Álvaro Untoria has found a new obstacle called a state of alarm within a recovery process in which he was beginning to see the light. “He had started to solo ball on the pediment with cleats. The next step was to call Jokin Etxaniz to schedule me a training with colleagues from Aspe. I was planning to reappear during the month of April. And this has come », says the 29-year-old Najera defender, champion of the Couples next to Bengoetxea VI in 2015. He arrived at the Eibar promoter from Baiko and has a contract until June 2021.
“They operated on me on December 12 in Barcelona,” recalls Untoria, who played his last game “in mid-November. It was at the Navarra Arena, at the festival of the final of the Cuatro y Medio between Ezkurdia and Altuna III. I then spent about fifteen days between tests until I knew the exact extent of the injury and went through the operating room.
“After the operation I was four weeks with my arm in a sling, immobilized,” says Untoria. From the beginning they told him that it would take about four months to return to the courts.
The Najerino sets a date for the start of the next phase of his recovery. «I started rehabilitation on January 8th. I was going to Logroño every day. On the one hand they attended me in the mutual and on the other I went to the physiotherapist in Las Gaunas, near the pediment where an edition of the San Mateo fair took place ». It was 2009. After a demanding period of rehabilitation to fine-tune the right shoulder, he was within the deadlines established at the beginning.
A mini gym at home
Until the declaration of the state of alarm forced him to stay at home, where “I have a mini-gym with some devices. I am still in telephone contact with my physical trainer and with my physical therapist from Logroño, who mark the exercises to be performed ».
Apart from acquiring a suitable physical tone, his main objective is the tuning of the right shoulder. “What worries me the most right now is maintaining shoulder strength. There is no way I want to stop completely because that would force me to start again from scratch. The shoulder responds and is not giving me war. There are days when I am loaded and, of course, now I am missing the massage to release the area. But I get along pretty well.
Confinement despairs him more than the routine of long rehabilitation sessions. Look, these three weeks at home are getting longer than the four months of recovery. He passes them at his home in Nájera, a town where his parents run a bar. “Like other catering establishments in the town, they closed it before the government even gave the order. They are in their house and we are in ours. We talked on the phone, period. I am locked up, without leaving. I spend many hours in the mini gym.
The SLAP injury, characteristic of handball, water polo and baseball
Untoria arises from a SLAP lesion, typical of the upper glenoid labrum of the shoulder, usually centered on the insertion of the tendon of the long head of the biceps brachii muscle, although it can extend and involve the anterior and posterior labrum, as well as surrounding structures. . The labrum is a fibrocartilage that surrounds the glenoid fossa, where the head of the humerus sits. The articular surface of the humeral head is rounded and four times greater than the glenoid fossa. This fibrocartilage allows the depth of the fossa to be doubled and thereby increase the stability of the glenohumeral joint, which is part of the shoulder joint complex. In addition, it serves as an insertion for the glenohumeral ligaments and the tendon of the long head of the biceps brachii muscle.
This injury is most often caused by a fall on the outstretched arm – usually with the shoulder slightly flexed – or by the repetitive use of throwing movements, as in the case of handball, water polo, or baseball players.