One of the most common complaints we treat at Nedlands Physiotherapy is shoulder pain. Although not all of our clients who present with shoulder pain are athletes, many of them are recreational or competitive swimmers. This is a favourite area of mine to treat and I find it so rewarding for both myself and the client when we can quickly figure out the cause of the problem and begin correcting it.
If we consider the anatomy of the shoulder, it is important to recognize that the shoulder, similar to the hip, is a ball and socket joint, which allows for a greater degree of movement compared to any other joint in the body. Often our stability and posture around the shoulder is compromised and as a result our shoulder is not functioning in its optimal position. This causes specific muscles to become over loaded and other muscles and tissues to be over stretched. With time and repetitive movement, whether as performed in a sport or at work, shoulder pain develops.
To successfully treat shoulder pain it is essential to consider what is happening upstream, or above the shoulder, as well as in the mid back or thoracic spine. Tissue health and joint range of movement around the neck and mid back directly influences the movement in the shoulder and shoulder blade and is often contributing to persistent shoulder problems. The good news is that more often than not postural type shoulder pain is easy to fix with correct posture modification, muscle re education and soft tissue and joint mobilisations. The not so good news is that a full recovery will take time and commitment to a specific exercise program aimed at improving the posture and the mechanics around the shoulder.
Finally, identifying biomechanical faults in your posture or sporting technique is crucial to ensuring your shoulder pain does not become an ongoing problem. Sporting technique or posture analysis can be organised through an ergonomic assessment at work or by booking a session with a professional coach for video analysis. Swim Smooth are well know in Perth for their premium 1-2-1 video analysis and stroke correction. A simple change to your stroke can make a world of difference in the management of your shoulder pain. To book a session or learn more visit; www.swimsmoothperth.com