The shoulder is built with a wide range of motion and frequently accomplishes monotonous movements which make it more prone to injury. The prevalent shoulder injuries that can occur in the gym typically include tendonitis, rotator cuff strains, bursitis as well as impingement. It is important to note that these injuries can occur due to overtraining or incorrect technique during activities in the gym such as yoga, weightlifting, recreational sports and swimming. Most cases of shoulder injuries can be prevented, but for acute injuries, conservative treatment options usually include rest and application of ice. If you want to learn more about these first aid measures, click here.
Rotator cuff strain
The rotator cuff muscles include the supraspinatus, teres minor, infraspinatus and subscapularis. These muscles help stabilize the shoulder joint. A rotator cuff strain occurs when the muscle is overstretched and sustains either a complete or partial tear.
Always bear in mind that a strain can occur if the muscles are not properly warmed up, overstretched or overloaded which can be caused by incorrect weight lifting techniques. The symptoms include joint stiffness, shoulder pain, muscle weakness and instability. A strain can be prevented with warming up but do not excessively stretch the shoulder joint and the increasing weight must be done at a steady manner. The immediate treatment for a strain includes rest and application of ice. A doctor should be consulted if the symptoms worsen.
Impingement syndrome occurs once the subacromial bursa, bicep tendons and supraspinatus are compressed. As time passes, these structures end up swollen. The impingement can develop due to constant overhead movements of the shoulder. The symptoms include anterior shoulder pain and heightened pain upon overhead shoulder movement.
Preventing this syndrome is possible by strengthening the rotator cuff muscles and allowing enough recovery between activities. A doctor should be consulted for proper diagnosis and treatment if the syndrome is suspected.
The bursae are sacs of fluids situated around the joints which provide cushion between the bones and soft tissues. It also helps reduce the friction between these structures. Bursitis is a condition involving the swelling of a bursa sac. An acute case of bursitis around the shoulder can develop if the shoulder is directly hit or if the individual falls on it.
Chronic bursitis is usually minor unlike with tendonitis or impingement which causes extreme friction or pressure on a sac. The symptoms include tenderness over the swollen bursa as well as pain during movement. Bursitis can be prevented with warming up and cooling down before and after exercise as well as allow adequate recovery.
The tendons are responsible for connecting the muscles to the bone. When tendonitis develops, it involves the inflammation of these tendons. The tendons of the rotator cuff and biceps are usually affected but the condition can affect any tendon. The causes of the condition include overstretching, overloading and compression of the tendons. The symptoms include shoulder pain, tenderness and stiffness. Preventing tendonitis is possible through proper warming up, increasing the weight steadily and stretching after exercise. Physical therapy might be required to help with the recovery process.