The shoulder joint is the most moveable joint in the human body. This excess in range of motion in many cases will lead to instability and the possibility of injury over time. The rotator cuff is a group of four muscle tendons that act to try and stabilize the ball and socket shaped shoulder joint. When these structures continuously get stressed, tears and tendonitis may begin to develop causing a decrease to theshoulder range of motion and pain.
One common shoulder injury that begins to develop in adults is frozen shoulder (aka adhesive capsulitis). This most commonly occurs when adhesions begin to develop around the many structures of the shoulder joint. The synovial fluid a viscous substance that lines the small space between the capsule and the ball of the humerus is decreased in a frozen shoulder. This causes range of motion to be substantially reduced.
Physiotherapy has been proven very effective in managing the pain associated with frozen shoulder and rotator cuff tendonopathies. Passive range of motion and manipulation will help treat and reduce the pain even further. By increasing a pain-free range of motion with shoulder we can attempt to incorporate shoulder exercises to the treatment protocol. This will reduce the chance of muscle wasting as well as strengthen the supporting muscles of the shoulder joint.