Fact Friday #5

Welcome to our fifth Fact Friday!

This Friday we discuss shoulder injuries. Grab your notebook, pen and take notes. Your shoulders will thank you for this information!

Why are we discussing this?

There are many athletes who have had or currently have shoulder injuries, often these injuries are related to shoulder instability. But why is the shoulder unstable and how can you make it stronger so that you can prevent injury and ultimately improve your performance. To answer that question, let's take a look at the anatomy of the shoulder joint. 

The shoulder joint

As some of you may know, the shoulder is a ball and socket joint, which allows it to move freely in almost all directions. But the head of the shoulder joint does not fit very well in the socket because the socket is quite shallow and the head is more ovoid than round. This in itself creates a degree of instability in the shoulder, which must then be compensated for by muscles surrounding the shoulder. These muscles are the rotator cuffs.

The rotator cuffs are a group of 4 muscles that are responsible for much of the stability in your shoulder. Although you use them non-stop day in and day out, they can often be overpowered by the larger muscle groups around them, leaving the rotator cuffs relatively weak. It's important to take good care of the rotator cuffs because they provide your shoulder with the stability you need for everyday things and exercises like bench press, military press, as well as things like squats and deadlifts. Plus, your rotator cuff muscles can become very fragile as you age, so injury prevention is hugely important when it comes to shoulders. The healing of shoulder injuries can also take quite a long time, depending on the type of injury of course. With the most common shoulder injury, subacromial pain syndrome (SAPS), only about 30% of people recover within 6 weeks. About 50% have recovered after 6 months and 60% have recovered after 12 months. So the conclusion we can draw is that you should take good care of your shoulders!

Exercises for Shoulder Instability

We've included a video below that provides a detailed explanation of various exercises you can do to strengthen your rotator cuffs. Even if you've never had a problem with your shoulders, it certainly doesn't hurt to make them even stronger, right 

"The best Rotator Cuff strengthening routine"