The Reason Why Your Shoulder Is Not Getting Better

Do you have shoulder pain? Maybe it's a pain that has persisted for a long time, or a pain that's been stubborn and comes back as soon as you try to get back to sport from resting it for weeks? To understand how to properly rehab a shoulder or come back from injury, we first have to understand how a healthy shoulder works..

A Healthy Shoulder

The shoulder is a complex joint, it's built to be incredibly mobile - in fact the only bony connection between your shoulder and the rest of your body is via the collar bone! But increased mobility comes at the compromise of stability. Your shoulder joint relies upon a fine balance of tension and action of muscles, tendons, ligaments to keep the shoulder stable during the movements we make with our arm. The main muscles that control movement at the shoulder are known as the rotator cuff.

So how does injury strike?

Now this system works great when every member of the muscle team is doing their job properly, but what happen's when one guy starts slacking? Maybe some muscles have become tight and shortened because we, for example, spend the whole day sitting at the desk slouched over with our arms in front of us at the computer? Or perhaps you totally love doing bicep curls at the gym every week but regularly talk yourself out of lat pull downs or reverse flys (!!)

Activities that can introduce or exacerbate muscle imbalance can be found in pretty much every repetitive activity we do! Well in these situations, every other muscle that controls the joint has to adapt and compensate to keep your shoulder working in exactly the same way.. You take one guy out, and all the others have to chip in a little bit more. This often happens over time without us having any idea and it causes no problems, but there comes a stage when a muscle that has been working extra hard to compensate just can't take the load anymore, it's been working much harder than it was designed to and finally gives up! I'm sure theres some sort of working overtime and quiting a job analogy in there somehow. Well this is exactly how an injury comes about in the shoulder - rotator cuff tear, tendonitis etc