Let's talk shoulder pain

Lets talk shoulder pain from Hybrid Performance Method on Vimeo.

Let's talk shoulder pain

Alright, today we are going to talk about the shoulder. Mild shoulder irritation or complaints, commonly follow movements like bench press and overhead press.

 So, what happens is that at the first sign of discomfort,  many people are getting ready ahead of themselves and they equate pain as damage and they go to the list of all possible catastrophic injuries they could have suffered short of accidental amputation.

The term shoulder impingement often comes up and seems like a satisfactory answer because it implies that there's a plausible explanation for the pain.

It seems credible since many professionals and healthcare practitioners continue to use them.

Now you change your movements so that you don't impinge your shoulder and cause more damage or maybe you'll still stop doing that exercise all together and moving itself must be bad.

The problem with the narrative of this particular story is that it's just untrue.  Shoulder impingement is a problematic term because it's a catch-all.  Many people without symptoms cancel both shoulders in certain positions and many people have tissue changes or Imaging that show.

Exercise intervention studies have demonstrated that exercise helps reduce shoulder associated pain but not permanently changing movement patterns.

The pain is gone but the impingement mechanism is still there and even surgery to permanently impinge the shoulder has repeatedly demonstrated no effects beyond placibo. 

All of these challenges the common assumption that there is a clear relationship between biomechanics and shoulder pain in all cases.

So if mild shoulder pain is not shoulder impingement, then what is it? Actually the more important question is what can we do about it?

Even though biomechanics doesn't exclusively determine shoulder pain, we can still use biomechanics to our advantage. We can use different techniques that may be more efficient and less painful.

We can introduce new pain-free movements to create novel training effects, but most importantly remember that a little bit of discomfort during exercise is okay as long as you don't overdo it and use this information to inform future training positions.

When issues inevitably arise it's about finding a way to keep exercising without aggravating the tissue so much that he grows out of control. To help you with that process I would like to introduce you to the new and improved pain scale. What is this new and improved pain scale?

Number one, it might be an itch. Number two I just need a Band-Aid. Number three this is kind and annoying. Number four, is still concerning but I can work it out. Number 5, bees? Number six, BEES! Number seven, I can't stop crying. Number 8, I can't move it because it hurts so bad. Number 9, mauled by a bear or ninjas. Number 10, unconscious.

Keep this pain scale in mind when you're training around my mild shoulder pain, known around these parts as a case of the shoulder bees. There should be no beehives, ninjas, and bears in the gym.

Keep any discomfort below a 5 or a 10. For shoulder pain it might be best to shoot for a 3 out of 10  of pain or less. If anything it should reduce as you warm up or go to the workout. However if you are concerned about your shoulder pain make sure to get it evaluated by a qualified medical provider that you trust and don't be afraid to modify training as needed so the short-term pain doesn't hinder your long-term progress. 

This was shoulder and as always, catch you guys next time!

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