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Pain in the Front of Your Shoulder: A Possible Fix

The Pain

Pain in the front of your shoulder may be a proximal (close to the torso) bicep tendon issue. If you feel pain when pushing open doors, picking up heavy items or doing press-ups/bench press in the gym then it may well be the biceps tendon. This is an injury that I have seen a lot recently, it appears to be common in younger more physically active people. While the more notorious shoulder problem of rotator cuff tears are more common in more elderly people. Anyway, if you currently have anterior shoulder pain then keep reading for an exercise that I have seen help many people recently get rid of their pain.

Typically, when we think of strengthening out biceps we think about flexing the elbow, while this is working the bicep it is only half of its job. The other half being to flex the shoulder (raise the arm forward). And from my experience people often injury this part of the bicep through shoulder movements such as lifting heavy boxes, bench press, press ups, racket sports, truly anything that places high amounts of stress on the shoulder.

It may not be the bicep that is the culprit with anterior (front) shoulder pain, but if it is, the following exercise, which focuses on the proximal part of the biceps should help you to strengthen the damaged tissue and get you back to normality ASAP!

The Exercise

Step 1:

Flex elbow to 90ish degrees and flex shoulder to 90ish degrees

Step 2:

Slowly extend the shoulder keeping elbow flexed at 90ish degrees

Keep extending down until your upper arm is by your side and that is 1 rep done.

The Details

The key to this exercise to extend the shoulder as slowly as you can whilst keeping the movement controlled. Typically, after an injury you will feel very unstable and this movement with resistance will be very wobbly. The slowness of this movement is key not only to increasing the strength but also the quality of movement I.E. More controlled and less shaky.

The longer the rep can last the better to begin with, but keep it moving, I got a 30 second rep so aim for somewhere in that time frame, that’s 30 seconds coming down. Start with slowly down and getting up however you can, both hands if needs be.

The focus is on the down phase because you are naturally stronger when lengthening your muscles as we are here.

Take away points:

  1. Get a band / cable machine

  2. Fix the rest of your body in place so only the upper arm is moving when performing the exercise

  3. Focus on making this exercise difficult with the speed rather than the weight

As always, if this helps you, please share it with someone else who may also benefit from this exercise. And more importantly, it's still best for you to go and see a practitioner to make sure you are doing all you can do to get better.

Activate Sports Therapy

0784 644 2339

Activate Sports Therapy, 60a Washway Road, Sale, United Kingdom, M33 7RE

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