The shoulder is the most mobile joint in the body, capable of a wide range of motions important across dozens of sports. Unfortunately, being the most mobile joint also means being unstable. Balancing stability in the shoulder is all about muscle control, and this control comes from the rotator cuff. This group of muscles takes on a lot of stress, so it’s common for them to develop tendonitis, causing shoulder pain and disability.

The rotator cuff is made up of four different muscles: Subscapularis, Teres Minor, Supraspinatus, and Infraspinatus. Whenever you raise up your arm away from your body, the rotator cuff muscles work to stabilize the ball and socket joint of the shoulder. With this movement in mind, it’s clear that overhead athletes ask a lot of their rotator cuff.

An estimated 30% of the general population will experience shoulder pain at some point, and rotator cuff tendonitis is the most common type. The tendons in the rotator cuff become inflamed and irritated with overuse, causing swelling, pain, and limited range of motion.

We regularly see rotator cuff tendonitis in our clientele as the result of repetitive overuse. Athletes involved in sports like baseball, swimming, tennis, golf, and basketball put regular stress on their rotator cuff muscles. With rotator cuff tendonitis, you’ll experience pain in the shoulder joint that worsens when you reach overhead or behind.

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Pain is also worse when sleeping on the shoulder at night. The shoulder may become stiff and weak. Learning everything we can about the symptoms and your level of activity will help us develop the right treatment plan for your rotator cuff tear.

Our goal in treating a case of rotator cuff tendonitis is to look at the big picture and correct the impairment in a way that will avoid compensation injuries. We start by reducing pain and swelling, then work on range of motion and building strength. By using advanced tools like Pneumatic Compression Therapy and Hot and Cold therapy, we can help speed up your recovery.

When you’re ready, we will introduce exercises and stretches that will further increase strength and range of motion to get you back to your regular activity level. People with muscle imbalance or inflexibility are more likely to develop tendonitis, so we prioritize both of these in each patient. Before your rehabilitation is complete, we are sure to educate you on proper motion and movement moving so that you can protect your shoulder from reinjury moving forward.

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