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Old 01-27-2010, 05:52 PM   #1
Jim Broun
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SLAP tear recovery notes

Just some tidbits from my last five months of recovery from a two-screw SLAP tear (repair of a torn labrum):

- Surgery on 15 September 2009. Had it because it was getting to be too painful to do overhead lifts and pull-ups. Doc was amazed that my shoulder wasn't falling out of socket all the time (I told him 'Crossfit baby!'...).

- Wore a sling 24/7 for the first months and a half. Couldn't even lift my arm high enough to wash my hair for a long time.

- Started physical therapy after Thanksgiving. All of it was focused towards getting my range of motion back at first. This is a long road, and takes dedication. It isn't too painful, but it it depressing to have months go by with so little progress. Doctor also told me I could start running again at this time. It took a little bit of focus to keep from putting my arm in an uncomfortable position, and it affected my stride a lot.

- Was able to start using weighted resistance in physical therapy (one and two-pounders). My range of motion to the front was about 90% back, but still only about 75% to the side, and 50% rotating my arm at various angles.

- Stopped going to physical therapy on the 17th of January. The doctor took some Xrays, and said the shoulder healed well, and I could get back into exercising gradually - at a comfortable pace for me. Told me not to bench press too heavily for a few more months, as that angle was the weakest for the type of surgery I had.

- 22 January 2010 was the first day I could semi-comfortably 'rack' a broomstick for a weightless shoulder press. Holding the Olympic bar in this position still hurts. The biggest issue is the range of motion that allows the hand to grip the bar while the weight is so close to the body. I can do shoulder presses with light weights, and overhead tricep extensions without pain.

- 27 January 2010 (today) was the first day I could awkwardly hold a bar in the back squat position. It isn't good form at all, and would hurt like hell to try and balance any weight using my grip. I found that exercising the shoulder at the limits of the range of motion helps improve my range of motion. I still cannot hang from a pull-up bar, but have been going through the motions for a clean using a broom stick, and doing some light deadlifts and pushups.

The most depressing thing about the whole surgery was the time off from lifting exposed my weaknesses in the non-surgery shoulder. Since both of my shoulders are so weak now, my non-surgery shoulder hurts like there is some damage in that one as well. I am sure once I build my strength back up, it will cover up the weakness and pain I am experiencing now.

My goal is to do a back squat with weight by March, and a pull-up by May. Overall, I think it was a good move at 42 years old. I fully anticipate being able to get back to a sub-10 minute Fran by 15 September 2010 (one full year after the surgery).

Hope this is useful.
Jim
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Old 01-27-2010, 07:10 PM   #2
Jason David
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Re: SLAP tear recovery notes

Trainer at our gym had a major SLAP surgery as well...It's been tough for him. Good luck to you both.
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Old 01-27-2010, 08:23 PM   #3
Steven Low
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Re: SLAP tear recovery notes

You absolutely need to focus on gaining thoracic extension, and scapular mobility, and glenhumeral mobility back.....

Basically, focus on improving range of motion for everything over aggressively getting the weights up. If you need exercises we can do that.

Fish oil it up too.
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Old 01-29-2010, 01:31 PM   #4
Jim Broun
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Re: SLAP tear recovery notes

Quote:
Originally Posted by Steven Low View Post
Basically, focus on improving range of motion for everything over aggressively getting the weights up. If you need exercises we can do that.
There is no way I could even lift anything with much weight now anyway. Right now I use five-pounders for just about everything. My broomstick is far less than that,and none of what I do is aggressive or explosive.

TRUST me, re-injuring this and having to do it all over again would cause me to toss in the towel on all physical activity. Losing a year of being able to do something you love takes a mental toll as well as physical.

Jim
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Old 05-14-2010, 12:09 PM   #5
Justin Metts
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Re: SLAP tear recovery notes

I'm glad I found this. I am currently making a decision on rather or not to have the surgery for a SLAP tear I got while doing burpees in the winter.
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