Physical Therapy Update

It was muscle strengthening time once again today for my left shoulder (bicipital tendinitis). We started with the usual: hot gel packs for 20 minutes and ultrasound for 5 minutes. Then it was stretching and exercises.

The basic stretching was composed of shoulder mobilization. Martin the therapist would take the arm and stretch it GENTLY outwards towards him while I'm lying.

He moves the shoulder around the socket, up and down and then left to right. He would also put his hand under the shoulder blade to aid in the mobilization.

Then I'd do the arm raises. I raise the arm upwards and overhead for 10 counts. It's all gradual progression. First he assists and then by myself.

Then I do the lateral arm raise while lying down. I raise the arm at the side while opening the hand to face front and then face right. In these, anytime I feel pain or soreness, he'd do the mobilization stretch again.

Then I'd sit. He'd stretch the back exercises teres minor and major. So my left arm would be wound around the body gently stretching the back muscles. He'd sometimes massage these muscles.

Then I'd stand to do the exercises. Standing, I'd do front shoulder raises with 2 lb dumbbells. The lateral shoulder raises. Bicep curls for 4 pounds and then Tricep Extensions. The initial reps are assisted and there will be 10 reps.

Then I'd do the stretchcord exercises with a folded towel squeezed in my left armpit. The towel would supposedly isolate the parts to be exercised. While standing, I'd do the inner pull and then the outer pull. Both pulls aren't full range of motion - just 90 degrees.

Judging from the above therapy session, I'd conclude the importance of 2 things that I've neglected and has resulted in this overuse injury: Dryland Exercises and Bilateral Breathing.

Dryland Exercise:

I need to strengthen the shoulder and the surrounding muscles. Strengthening it would stabilize it and allow it to take all that repetetive motion.

Doing the dumbbells and stretchcords stuff isn't difficult for me. It's essentially knowing the proper technique (form, progression, poundage) and doing them RELIGIOUSLY.

Bilateral Breating:

I could only assume that the reason it was the left shoulder and not the right is because I breath on the right side. I suppose I roll sufficiently to my right.

I couldn't say the same for the left side. I may be overstretching the left shoulder if I don't roll sufficiently to my left side.

In other words, I now need to BALANCE the stroke. Maybe doing the 2-beat crossover kick with bilateral breathing might just be the combo I need.

Because of this conclusion, I'm now putting the flip-turn goal aside. I'd rather much focus in rebuilding what I lost first. As Martin said, me regaining my previous strength and flexibility may not be easy but it will happen.

Go ahead, post your comment below!