em>Tuesday November 03,192014
Do you have Shoulder Impingement Syndrome?
Collectively, the job of the rotator cuff muscles is to hold the head of the humerus (upper arm) in the glenoid fossa of the scapula.
When the rotator cuff muscles are over trained or stressed they begin to swell. This is no different than most other tissues in the body. Inflammation is a natural and needed course of defense and repair. The problem with the rotator cuffs is that because they are surrounded by bone, there is no room for them to “swell” with the inflammation. This is what causes the pain associated with impingement syndrome. You’ll notice the pain when you reach behind your back or lift your arm above your head.
The bigger problem: the increased shear force on the swollen muscles as they, not so smoothly, glide under the bony surfaces can cause a rotator cuff tear if you are not proactive with treating your impingement.
I want to preface the following with the usual: I am NOT a doctor. If you think this is what is occurring in your shoulder, see your doctor first. They may want to do an x-ray of your shoulder to rule out the possibility of a bone spur or other bony changes that may also produce this pain.
Here are the possible treatments for shoulder impingement:
1) Anti-inflammatory medications (ibuprofen, naproxen): This one seems obvious now that you know the cause right? The muscle is inflamed, so an anti-inflammatory should help right? Using this once will relieve the pain, using it twice will as well BUT it will not make the problem go away. An anti-inflammatory needs to be on board for upwards of 2 months to solve the swelling. Again, there are side effects to every medication and not everybody’s body can handle the daily use of NSAID’s (Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs) so ASK YOUR DOCTOR before starting this.
2) Avoid “overhead” movements: I know, I know, we do CrossFit, how can I avoid Overhead?! You just have to. If something starts to hurt, you need to lower the bar/kettlebell/dumbbell. You will have wished you had if you end up progressing it far enough that it tears!
3) Ice: Ice is another method that can reduce inflammation in the shoulder. Ice can be applied for 15 minutes sessions every 4 or so hours.
4) Pendelum stretch: This can be weigthed or not. This is intended to gently stretch the space that the muscles and tendons pass through relieving the pressure. Slowly add weight after starting, just a few pounds a week.
5) Banded external rotation exercise: Hold both your elbows at 90 degrees at your side. Throughout the movement, make sure to keep your elbows close. With a band, externally rotate your arm, hold for just a few seconds and then slowly, internally rotate and allow the band to recoil.
Impingement is commonly due to overuse. I know we’ve said this once, twice, maybe three times before and it won’t be the last but REST! We love you and enjoy having you at our gym but that does NOT mean we need to see you at every workout!
Skill / Strentgh
2 Mile run (NFT)
30 Min Chipper for reps
400- Air Squats
300- Sit UP
200- Push Up