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Old 09-30-2011, 04:02 PM   #1
Tanner Duncan
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Shoulder Impingement

I've had a left shoulder impingement for over 6 weeks. I recently went through PT to address this issue and had some success. I still feel pain if I "jerk" on pull ups or toes to bar. My therapist said I should just not do pull ups...I'm like WTF, it's a basic body function and her retort was, "when do you ever need to do pull ups?" I'm pretty frustrated.

The injury came from shoulder presses or thrusters and I haven't tried them since. I don't think it would be a great idea to try them at this point.

I planned on starting back at my box next week, but I'm worried about doing more damage. I didn't find much in the MWOD to address this specific issue.

I've had impingement before, but it usually just went away after a few days.

Any advice is appreciated.
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Old 09-30-2011, 05:55 PM   #2
Lisa Stephenson
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Re: Shoulder Impingement

Sorry to hear your news! I have had the same thing going on for the last 3 weeks and mine also came from thrusters and other overhead movements. I've gone to PT a few times and have gotten a lot of relief from the trigger point work that they've done but I still get referred pain down my arm and my thumb is numb.

I have started back doing WODs but just try to judge each movement in terms of whether it hurts or not and I'm definitely scaling down on some things. Also, I just go slow on each new movement until I figure out how it feels. The other thing that I'm doing is working on my posture and focusing harder than usual on really good form/shoulder position since I'm sure that bad form was part of the culprit. We did CFT yesterday at my box and I had to skip the shoulder press.

My coaches have given me a few mobility exercises that also seem to be giving me some relief. If I find the same ones on MWOD, I'll send you the link.

I hope you feel better soon!
Lisa
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Old 10-01-2011, 06:19 PM   #3
Dave Gardner
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Re: Shoulder Impingement

I'm not a doctor but have acquired an impressive array of chronic overuse injuries; so this reply comes from my own personal anecdotal experience:

Shoulder impingement MAY be the result of an excessively "hooked" acromion process. This boney anomaly causes the bursa between the acromion process and humeral head to become inflammed, especially when doing any type of overhead activity, thus resulting in chronic and reoccurring bursitis.

A simple shoulder x-ray and range-of-motion exam by a shoulder-specialist orthopedic physician should confirm or refute this.

If this is indeed the cause of your impingement, a relatively straight-forward arthroscopic procedure, called a subacromial decompression (SAD), is performed. Expect a 6-8 week recovery with aggressive PT.
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Old 10-01-2011, 08:07 PM   #4
Brian Strump
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Re: Shoulder Impingement

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tanner Duncan View Post
I've had a left shoulder impingement for over 6 weeks. I recently went through PT to address this issue and had some success. I still feel pain if I "jerk" on pull ups or toes to bar. My therapist said I should just not do pull ups...I'm like WTF, it's a basic body function and her retort was, "when do you ever need to do pull ups?" I'm pretty frustrated.

The injury came from shoulder presses or thrusters and I haven't tried them since. I don't think it would be a great idea to try them at this point.

I planned on starting back at my box next week, but I'm worried about doing more damage. I didn't find much in the MWOD to address this specific issue.

I've had impingement before, but it usually just went away after a few days.

Any advice is appreciated.
So you're mad the PT said to stop doing pull ups now and you're mad? She's probably trying to save you're shoulder at the moment. Especially if you've had this issue before...don't just wait for the body to compensate and the pain to go away. Ask the PT for corrective exercises, and be sure to ask about soft tissue work to be done to the affected areas before this chronic impingement becomes a rotator cuff muscle tear.
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Old 10-02-2011, 09:28 AM   #5
Brent Sallee
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Re: Shoulder Impingement

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tanner Duncan View Post
I've had a left shoulder impingement for over 6 weeks. I recently went through PT to address this issue and had some success. I still feel pain if I "jerk" on pull ups or toes to bar. My therapist said I should just not do pull ups...I'm like WTF, it's a basic body function and her retort was, "when do you ever need to do pull ups?" I'm pretty frustrated.

The injury came from shoulder presses or thrusters and I haven't tried them since. I don't think it would be a great idea to try them at this point.

I planned on starting back at my box next week, but I'm worried about doing more damage. I didn't find much in the MWOD to address this specific issue.

I've had impingement before, but it usually just went away after a few days.

Any advice is appreciated.
You don't just acquire shoulder impingement at one moment in time. It's acquired over years from poor mobility and typically bad posture. How long have you been going to PT for it? Depending on how extensive your immobility and rotator cuff weakness are, it could take a few months to clear up. You likely need to stretch out your pec major and minor, loosen up your posterior shoulder capsule, strengthen your rotator cuff and scapular retractors, and then learn how to move again. Also, if you don't have enough scapular motion or shoulder motion, that will have to be mobilized as well. Going back to your box while you're still symptomatic is a bad idea if you're planning on continuing overhead work while still recovering. It's typically a good idea to continue workout, but overhead lifts are the last thing to come back pain-free. Sub inverted rows for pull-ups and bench for shoulder press in the meantime. Oly lifting is out, unless it's straight cleans. You can still workout AND listen to your PT though.

Btw, I understand how your PT responded was inappropriate, but what she's saying is correct. You're going to have to have significant gains in flexibility in your shoulders before you return to anything overhead.

The suggest subacromial decompression is overused and should only be utilized in extreme cases. Most of the time, impingement can be addressed with PT, if you religious complete your PT routine. I understand it sucks, but you definitely gotta be patient. Six weeks out is nothing compared to the time you'd be out with a supraspinatus tear caused by pushing through the impingement symptoms.

If your PT doesn't already have you doing specific pec major, pec minor, and posterior capsule stretches, ask her to give you some and to write them down. They will be a huge help.
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Old 10-02-2011, 11:31 AM   #6
Tanner Duncan
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Re: Shoulder Impingement

I didn't mean to rail on the PT, she was good and helped quite a bit. My frustrations get the best of me sometimes.

It really is about bad posture over many years. How I'm sleeping on my shoulder is probably a big issue too.

Going forward I'm going wait a month on going back and keep working at home, including the PT exercises. It's still really nice outside

Thanks for the support.
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Old 10-04-2011, 02:59 PM   #7
Tanner Duncan
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Re: Shoulder Impingement

I found this blog with some mobility and exercises

http://www.crossfitinvictus.com/blog/tag/prehab/
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