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Shoulder Injuries: The Silent Runners’ Curse

By on Aug 10, 2013
Image of runner's injured shoulder

Shoulder injuries – they’re not the most common running injuries by a long shot. So it’s no surprise that there’s a dearth of information about the best ways for runners to recover from shoulder injuries – or even how to avoid shoulder injuries in the first place. This article investigates.

More information about the article

The range of shoulder injuries is wide and so is the required recovery time. Some minor problem cause little pain and will heal rapidly; other injuries may require surgery and require months of rehabilitation. Below we give you the lowdown from a useful livestrong.com article that explores the issue – whether it’s a case of tendinitis, rotator cuff strains and tears or any other shoulder issue.

  1. One cause of shoulder problems is overuse, reflecting the repetitive arm movements associated with running. That can lead to the tendons and muscles in the shoulder becoming irritated or inflamed.
  2. Injuries can also be related to shoulder instability, resulting in rotator cuff injuries from the excessive movements.
  3. You can prevent shoulder injuries by incorporating specific shoulder exercises into your strength-training training programme. That might involve exercises such as pushups, dips and presses, making use of resistance bands and lightweight dumbbells, 2-4 times a week.
  4. Flexibility training and ensuring sufficient time for recovery between running sessions can also help prevent injury.
  5. When it comes to treating existing shoulder complaints, your approach should revolve around the well-known RICE method – in other words, rest, ice, compression, and elevation. These steps help to reduce inflammation within the shoulder joint, as well as supporting the body’s natural healing process.
  6. The author also recommends shoulder-specific physical therapy, such as massage and ultrasound – though if the injury is severe, it may be necessary to discuss surgery or anti-inflammatory medication options with your physician.
  7. Finally, taking steps to improve your running form can also help – as is indeed the case with almost all running injuries…

…runners can also suffer from shoulder injuries that can dramatically affect running performance…

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