"Shouldering" the load

"Shouldering" the load

The shoulder plays an integral role in a lot of sports and pass times, especially in the summer. Are yours prepared for the season?

Whether you're a golfer, a softball/slowpitch player, a gardener, or just a parent wanting to throw the ball around a bit; the shoulder could make or break your activities this summer.

When looking at the movement of the body as a whole there is a compliment of very stable and less stable joints. Those that are very stable joints tend to have a limited range of motion, those that are more susceptible to instability tend to have a larger range of motion. Look at the shoulder for example; it has a huge normal range of motion. Where it gains in mobility; it gives up stability. This is why we see so many people suffering from shoulder injuries; especially the weekend warrior types.

Those that have dislocated or separated their shoulder in the past will often tell you that the strength of the shoulder either never was the same, or that they always felt like it was ready "to go again". Improving the stability of the shoulder has always been a tough one for many folks. Most of the exercises involved low weights or rubber bands. The results are usually favorable, but at times are lacking. In those cases I find it always bodes well to look to the dynamic of the spine and shoulder control to go alongside what someone is doing with their Physiotherapist.

In the end of the day I hope that the majority of folks reading this have no shoulder issues at all... but rather they have clicked to find out best strategies to PREVENT a shoulder injury. What I recommend to my patients (and colleagues!!) is to model ourselves after some of the most valuable arms/shoulders in the world; Pitchers in Baseball!

Pitching, blue jays, shoulder, injury

Marcus Stroman - Toronto Blue Jays Pitcher

Yahoo Sports

A baseball pitcher in the major leagues is worth a lot of money to the franchise. A developing arm in the majors is also potentially worth Millions of dollars. What do they do to prevent injuring such a valuable commodity? They "pre-hab" the shoulder to reduce the odds of injury, and reduce the severity of injuries should they occur. This concept came to light years ago when I did some training with the 'Titleist Performance Institute" and how to prevent shoulder injuries in golfers.

The best advice I can give any avid golfer, baseball player, tennis player, crossfitter or anyone who plays a sport involving the shoulder (hint: it's pretty well every sport) is to watch the following video, save it to replay later, and follow the step by step process; what you'll find is stronger and more stable shoulders in your sport/passtime.

Via: National Pitching Association

Do that sequence of exercises prior to playing golf, softball, etc. and you'll severely decrease the likelihood of injury to the joint. As an added bonus, in a sport like golf, is you may notice a big improvement to your scorecard as a result of better shoulder control. (You can thank me on the 19th hole)

As always, any questions please shoot me a question.

Dr. Matt Lindsay, DC - Aligned Chiropractic, Burlington, ON