The rotator cuffs are integral parts of our body. They allow us to be able to freely move our arms from the shoulder joint. They are small tendons that aren’t that strong and, if they are placed under lots of stress, they can easily get damaged. It has become a very common injury in the gym and, in some cases, it can cause you to lose full movement of your arm if the tear is severe. (Related topics: rotator cuff physical therapy, shoulder impingement physical therapy, physical therapist Weston CT)
There are many signs of having a damaged or torn rotator cuff; you will lose strength in that arm, you will feel a numbing pain constantly, and it will hurt to sleep on that side. If you feel any of these symptoms, then you need to seek rotator cuff physical therapy to get you back on the right road to recovery.
A common theme with most people who have damaged their rotator cuffs is that they were oblivious to the damage they were doing. This often comes in the form of how they are exercising with certain exercises and the form they are using. This article will take a look at the exercises which are known to cause problems to your rotator cuffs.
The upright row is known as a good exercise to work your anterior and medial deltoid muscles located in the shoulder. It is performed by the user standing up with a bar held in front of them; then the user pulls the bar up to the chest region to recruit the deltoids to work. The problem with this exercise is that it puts a lot of stress onto the rotator cuffs because in order to get into the position you must invert your shoulders, and this compromises the rotator cuff as the movement is being performed. We recommend you to avoid this exercise and stick to other alternative exercises.
Dumbbell Lateral Raises
This exercise is great to isolate the medial deltoid but, if performed incorrectly, it can cause problems to the rotator cuff. A lateral raise should be performed by holding the dumbbell in a pronated grip and keeping your knuckles facing outward; then the dumbbells should be raised upward with the arm staying as straight as possible whilst focusing on the strength coming from the medial deltoid and not the trapezius maximus. The problem most people tend to make is by holding the dumbbell at an inverted angle with palms or thumbs facing down. This causes internal pressure of the rotator cuff and, over time, can cause problems.
Probably one of the most popular exercises for a gym goer. It is a great exercise to build strength and target your pectoral muscles. But this exercise is probably the most common to cause rotator cuff tears. The bench press is a technical movement that requires lots of small adjustments to ensure for a safe lift. A normal gym user may not understand the fundamentals of the bench press, so they just lie flat on the bench grab the bar and press the weight using any means possible. By doing this, you would likely not recruit many pectoral muscle fibers and the majority of your strength would come from your triceps and shoulders. The problem specifically with this exercise is that most people will press with their elbows pointed outwards, which compromises your rotator cuffs and, with heavy weight, it can cause tears quite easily. As stated above, the bench press is a technical movement; we recommend doing research into correctly performing this movement to avoid any injuries.
Behind the Neck Press
Behind the neck movements are recipes for disaster. It is very common to see them be performed in the gym and just by looking at the movement, you can see it is very unnatural. The one focused here is the behind the neck press. Either performed sat down or stood up, the user starts with the bar behind their head and presses in an upward movement. This movement is very bad for multiple reasons: firstly, it causes internal pressure to the rotator cuff, causing them to press against the boney parts of the shoulder; it is an unnatural movement and there are much better exercises out there, which are safer and more beneficial. We recommend staying away from all of these behind the neck movements and finding alternative exercises.
The rotator cuffs are vital for you to be able to perform everyday functions. So, it is important to take care of them! But if you feel you have a rotator cuff injury then don’t hesitate to contact us. We are the premier physical therapist in Weston, CT, and can get your rotator cuffs back to normal health. Our rotator cuff physical therapy may seem daunting, but we can ensure you that we will be able to solve your problems.
At CT Sports Physical Therapy & Wellness, we strive to provide the best quality care available for our clients regardless of their condition, including rotator cuff physical therapy, shoulder impingement physical therapy, tendonitis physical therapy Fairfield CT, and physical therapist in Weston, CT, among many others. From tailored wellness programs to encouragement and education, our goal is to help you achieve better health. We are the only Physical Therapy Practice to carry advanced certifications as Sports Clinical Specialists in Norwalk, CT. Make an appointment today by calling us at (203) 957-8100.