Shoulder pain is extremely common in the population, odds suggest you or the person next to you have had it at some stage in their life, some might be a short-term niggle and others can be battles that have last years. The shoulder is an incredibly complex joint and notoriously unstable, but this is to help us have the range our shoulder requires every single day.
So how and why do I have shoulder pain?
- There’s the obvious shoulder injuries that happen when playing sport, incredibly painful things such as dislocations or fractures in the clavicle or scapula.
- Joint sprains (ligament) such as the AC joint is common in contact sports and falls.
- Muscular injuries – common with lifting heavy or awkwardly, this is even more common in those who have tried to go ‘too hard too soon’ in a new training program or a return to sport…. not to mention people trying to relive their sporting heroics from 20 years ago!
- Overuse – Commonly injuring tendons such as the biceps and the ever so notorious rotator cuff.
- LACK of use – being sedentary and not using our shoulders can increase the strain on our arms with simple daily activities, its important to keep moving and try to be active!
I could spend all day labelling the muscles, what they do and how we hurt them; but I know it’s not what you want to read today!
However if you do have shoulder pain that you really aren’t quite sure about or you don’t know if these exercises will be safe, then please visit our amazing clinic for an assessment and a personalised rehab program so that you can be back doing all the activities you want and love to do!
Also please note if you are unable to perform these without pain, cease activity immediately and obtain a proper assessment from one of our amazing Osteopaths.
Exercise 1 – Pec Stretch!
How do I do it?
- Facing the corner of the room
- Rest your elbow on the wall either side of the room corner
- Have your elbows roughly shoulder height – Keeping your elbows/forearms still on the wall gently step towards the corner
- Keep your head up straight, and your spine upright
- Take deep breaths and relax
- The stretch can be altered by having your elbows higher and lower for slightly different stretch
Exercise 2 – The Theraband Clock
How do I do it?
- In a standing position, stand up nice and tall and roll your shoulders back. From here hold the band at tension in front of your body
- Trying to keep your elbows locked, I want you to pull the band apart, really focusing on trying to squeeze your shoulder blades together to make the movement happen.
- When you’ve mastered the coordination aspect of this then start to move your hands in positions like opposing numbers on a clock. 2 and 8, 1 and 7, 4 and 10, 5 and 11. This will challenge more muscles controlling your shoulders and neck. It is important to do the exercise in a slow and controlled manor in order to get the most out of it!
Exercise 3 – External Rotation with a kettlebell
How do I do it?
- Note if you don’t have a kettle bell, half fill a 3-liter milk bottle to create that unstable weight distribution
- The weight should not be heavy, 1-5kg depending on your strength will suffice!
- Laying on your back, head resting on a pillow
- Putting your arm straight up in front of you at a 90 degree angle to the ground
- Grip the bell (or substitute) as firmly as you can – this will switch on your shoulder stabilisers
- Try to keep your shoulder blade and back of shoulder touching, or as close to the ground as possible.
- Maintaining the grip and shoulder position, gently rotate your arm externally and internally keeping your eyes firmly focused on the kettle bell
- Try to maintain as straight an arm as possible
- If your arm starts to uncontrollably wobble cease the activity and recover before attempting again *
Should these not work for you or you’d require more help we have many therapy options to aid in your rehabilitation, strength and flexibility!
Including but not limited to:
- Soft Tissue
- Joint Articulation
- EWST Shockwave Therapy
- Dry Needling
- Stretching and Strength Exercise