Shoulder problems can have an impact on sport, sleeping and that ever-growing list of jobs and gardening you have been putting off.
The shoulder area is complex as it has a large range of movement with a relative lack of joint stability, it can become overloaded easily.
The shoulder relies a lot on muscular balances and appropriate strength of smaller muscles such as the 'rotator cuff' to stabilise and support the large range of movement the shoulder has. These muscles help to position the shoulder and more effectively distribute the force going through the shoulder, and avoid shoulder pain or injury.
Often people have muscle imbalances, or poor movement patterns that could lead to shoulder pain, or as a result of shoulder pain.
Treating shoulder injuries relies on a thorough assessment that should include, at the very least looking at the neck and upper back, ribs, shoulder movement patterns, strength assessments and some more specific tests.
I find a common issue in treating shoulder pain is when practitioners over simplify shoulder problems. For example, an ultrasound might show 'bursitis', which is painful and restrictive and involves inflammation of a bursa in the shoulder. To treat the bursa with just anti-inflammatory medications or injections however is neglecting the causes of the inflamed bursa. To treat shoulder pain such as bursitis effectively, we may identify stiff ribs, altered shoulder heights, of strength issues that may require treatment if the shoulder pain is to subside.
Physiotherapy at Body Matters Physio, based on a thorough assessment can help post operatively, sports injuries, bursitis, tendinosis, and stiff shoulders. Treatment will usually involve a large component of hands-on work, some advice for management and some exercises appropriate to your specific condition.
A common exercise to help develop your rotator cuff activation and improve shoulder stability is resisted static shoulder rotation. Bend your elbow to 90 degrees and keep it tucked into your side, then use your other hand to apply pressure outwards or inwards for 5 seconds. Resist this pressure by activation the shoulder muscles of the arm you are treating, see the below video, but remember to stop if your pain worsens and get checked out by the physio!
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Body Matters Physio takes a thorough holistic approach to treatment. Highly recommended, especially for those with chronic symptomology.