Shoulder Update May 2017

Man Shoulder Unsplash

Its been a while since I posted about my shoulder so I figured I’d post an update. Its officially been about 6 months since I last had a heavy lifting session in the gym, despite the surgery being about 10 weeks ago. My cardio endurance isn’t bouncing back, mostly I suspect due to the pain inhibiting me during the session. I’ve had significant loss in size, my traps are nearly normal, biceps and triceps shrunk, chest shrinking all the usual stuff which happens with 6 months no lifting, nearly 3 of them post operatively.

My physiotherapist is really impressed with my recovery rate, apparently mostly people by 3 months are just getting basic movement back, but I have a 90% movement, there are some extreme ends of movement I can’t quite do, hand behind my back is still a struggle some days for example. I have however been given the go-ahead to begin some gentle easing back into the gym, which is normally 7-8 months down the line.

There are some issues though, half of this is currently speculation. My fine motor control is shot to shit in my shoulder, my physio says the big muscles are always taking over not letting the smaller muscle work, which has reduced my fine control. My left shoulder blade isn’t moving normally its flaring out. I think this is because my shoulder has been tensed and held tense for stability for so long that the little muscles have been left out.

Complications

There is also significant weakness in the smaller muscles, the big muscles are still strong but over powering the lil ones. This big muscle thing has caused a few sprains at connection points, it seems my infraspinatus and one of the connection points on the top of my scapula are injured which is speculated because the big muscles are taking over.

I have also injured my right forearm, because I’ve been babying my left arm, the increased workload on my right arm has caused an injury not unlike tennis elbow, this is exacerbated by the existing injuries which affected my grip. Once I start using my left arm more and I can rest my right arm a little its suggested this will improve.

Because of the work done on my glenohumeral socket, when my arm moves to the extreme ranges of movement the humorous pushes against the raw exposed bone and/or scar tissue which means randomly movements are painful. This is getting better though. Once I start actually lifting I suspect the humorous pressing into the socket won’t be fun, I just hope the fibrous layer of scar tissue gets thick enough to with stand the pressures. 

The Future

I have to now work on a very basic and light workout plan. Its going to be hell not just stacking the plates out. I’m going to have to start benching with just the bar at 20kg, maybe even lighter, the upside is I can work on perfect form and correct previous mistakes. 

I’ve already planned shoulder work with internal and external rotations, and various rotator cuff exercises. Also been working on more stretching, I’m going to have to really baby the shoulder and work on it slowly. I’m still inhibited a little by the right shoulder being injured but I need to see how my left heals before I sort that one out.

I’m going to add some TRX, Cable Pod and some light machine work in over the next week or so, and see how that pans out. Not sure I’m ready for barbells and dumbbells quite yet. 

I’m also getting up to speed work wise, still have 100s of emails to reply to, because new emails come in daily, I reply to them and older ones get left. I reply to older ones an new ones get left, so no matter what I do its 10 steps forward, 2-3 steps backwards but I’m getting there.

Mans Back image by Unsplash.

A Manchester Based Photographer and Website Developer with interests in Strongman, Fitness and Geekery.

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