Recovering from Shoulder Injuries

Recovering From Shoulder InjuriesThe last thing an athlete wants is an injury. Unfortunately, they are a risk that athletes take when playing sports. One common area of injury is the shoulder, which is especially frustrating for overhead athletes such as baseball players or quarterbacks in football. After an injury occurs, the most important thing is to do the right training to heal the shoulder and prevent the same injury from happening again in the future.

The Shoulder

The area where the shoulder joint lies in the body is extremely complex. 1Numerous muscles, bones, ligaments, and tendons all converge in the same area. It’s no surprise that so many injuries occur in that area. Pitchers in baseball are predisposed to such injuries due to the motion involved with throwing a baseball, which puts a high amount of stress on both the elbow and shoulder areas. Below, we’ll go over some common shoulder injury categories and ways to rehab and eliminate discomfort.

Types of Shoulder Injuries

Instability

“Instability” is used to refer to a shoulder isn’t properly sitting in its joint. This can be something as simple as a slight tweak or as serious as a full dislocation. 2A common symptom of an individual with a instability in the shoulder is experiencing pain when raising the arm.

Impingement

3Impingement is caused by excessive rubbing of the shoulder muscles against the top part of the shoulder blade, called the acromion. This oftentimes happens with exercises and activities involving overhead mobility, such as throwing. One of the first symptoms of an impingement is inflammation in the shoulder area. Left untreated, it can lead to more serious injuries.

Shoulder Exercises

IR/ER

Internal and external rotation exercises with a resistance band or light weight (five pounds or less) are a great way to build up some of the muscles surrounding the shoulder joint. If using a band, attach the resistance band to the wall and stand a few feet away with the band in your hand. Have your elbow bent at a 90 degree angle against your hip, and rotate your arm outward (ER) or inward (IR) depending on the desired exercise. The same can be done with a weight while lying on the ground on your side.

Supraspinatus Stretch

Using 5 pound dumbbells, stand upright with your back against the wall with a dumbbell in each hand. Slowly lift your arms out at a 45 degree angle until you reach eye level, maintaining straight arms and a flat back throughout the entire exercise. Slowly bring your arms back down and repeat for 10 repetitions. This is a great workout for the rotator cuff and stabilizer muscles within the shoulder area. If you are unsure of how to do either exercise, don’t hesitate to reach out to a personal trainer at a gym to monitor your exercises!

Sources

1“Dr’s Advice: Recovering From Shoulder Injuries!”, Phano Paul Som, https://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/phano102.htm

2“Common Shoulder Injuries”, https://orthoinfo.aaos.org/en/diseases–conditions/common-shoulder-injuries

3“How to Recover from a Shoulder Injury”, https://darebee.com/fitness/how-to-recover-from-shoulder-injury.html

 

 

Image Credits: https://www.muscleforlife.com/shoulder-pain/

 

 

Post by Brandon Musto