Injury Focus – Rotator cuff

I see a fair few climbers and gym athletes with shoulder issues. Although there are a huge number of climbing and shoulder related resources out there, I thought it might be nice to have a quick blog about the most mis-understood bits of the whole thing. The rotator cuff and how that relates to issues that appear in the training and climbing community. Note, this is a blog, not a peer reviewed journal, nor is it a self-diagnosis provider. It is something to read, and hopefully be educated with. If you need a diagnosis for yourself – see a professional. … Continue reading

A lecture with Shirley Sahrmann

Lynne went to see a lecture by Shirley Sahrmann last year – and when the opportunity came up for another, advertised as her final lecture tour in the UK before her retirement, I jumped at it. Organised by PhysioUK, Shirley was talking at a number of locations around the UK, and I went to see her in Manchester. I had previously seen a couple of videos of her on the web, and they show her just as she is. A Physiotherapeutic version of Mary Berry. A cross between benevolent grandmother and stern university lecturer, with a sense of humour that … Continue reading

Shoulder Injuries – Part 3

So in part 1 and part 2 we looked at the structure and function of the shoulder, and then the way in which it moves, using pull and counter-pull of different muscles around the girdle. In this part, I’ll look at a couple of general reasons why people get shoulder pain (there just isn’t time or space to get too in-depth ) and how to avoid trouble. So why do I have shoulder pain? Quite commonly I will see clients who have a pain in their shoulder. The pain that they feel is generally not the place in which the … Continue reading

Shoulder Injuries – Part 2

In Part 1 of Shoulder Injuries we looked at the structure and function of the shoulder. In this article we’re looking at the way various muscles change the way the shoulder moves. Why do muscles change the way the shoulder moves? The most basic and obvious place to start is the Deltoid. The big teardrop shaped muscle over the shoulder that makes the shoulder shape. One of its main functions is to abduct the arm. If you stand with your arm at your side and then raise it up in an arc away from your waist so that eventually it … Continue reading

Frozen Shoulder

Introduction Frozen Shoulder is also known as adhesive capsulitis and is a condition where the shoulder has severely restricted movement. It occurs because scar tissue builds up around the ball and socket joint in the shoulder. This joint is normally extremely mobile due to the physical structure – a large ball in a relatively shallow socket – so any additional fibrotic build up around it impacts considerably on that free movement. What is a Frozen Shoulder? Physiologically what happens is that scar tissue forms around the joint capsule. There is often a loss of synovial fluid which is the lubrication … Continue reading

Shoulder Injuries – Part 1

Shoulders are one of those joints that either seem to work fine, or cause no end of trouble, with not a lot of middle ground where they cause a bit of gyp. Why is this? Is there something intrinsic about they way they are built that makes them particularly susceptible to injury? Structure The shoulder was originally an attachment for a 4 legged beast, and was used for propulsion. Only relatively recently in evolutionary terms have we as a species decided to stand up on 2 legs and use the other 2 for other stuff, like holding beer, mugs and … Continue reading