I went out the range yesterday and shot 30 or so arrows while waiting for friends to arrive (no stretching or warm up of course). I haven't been shooting that much lately so I intentionally stopped before I was worn out. I shoot a 70 lb Mathews Drenalin and have experienced a sore back and shoulder before when I overdid it, but nothing like this. Was planning on shooting a walking course later but never made it. My friends arrived and I watched as they spent maybe 30 minutes shooting and tinkering with their bows. While I was waiting, the right side of my chest started to hurt - right where the ribs attach to the sternum. It got more and more painful, then spread to my back - kind of between my shoulder blades - worse on the right side. The pain kept building until it was hurting so bad that I started to worry that I might be having a heart attack or something. But honestly, it felt more muscular than anything. I left early and thought seriously about going to the emergency room. I took a few aspirin and within 10 minutes or so it started to subside. The rest of the evening was fine and today my chest muscles and back muscles are sore (and sore to the touch). I came home from work early today as I couldn't stand to sit at my desk hunched in front of a computer anymore.
I've done a bit of reading online and it appears this is not uncommon among archers. Planning to take some time of and use ice, a TENs unit and NSAID's to manage pain while it heals. I'm wondering if I'm experiencing costochondritis or something similar. Very painful and very alarming.
Would be interested in hearing about the experiences of others and how long this takes to go away.