Shoulder impingement is a tough issue to manage if you don’t know the underlying cause. If a shoulder is too stiff, it can cause impingement. If a shoulder moves too much, it can cause… you guess it, impingement!
The shoulder is comprised of the scapula (shoulder blade), humerus (arm bone), and clavicle (collar bone). The points where these articulate, also called a joint, can develop stiffness which makes it hard to reach overhead, to the side, or behind the back.
Many muscles attach to the shoulder. Some have the job of stabilizing the bones, and some work harder to move the arm in different directions. Muscle stiffness or tension and can change the orientation of the shoulder joints, creating painful impingement while attempting to reach or move the arm. Conversely, muscle weakness can also allow the bones to move out of their optimal position during reach tasks, and also resulting in pain.
Most often, there is some combination of joint stiffness, muscle weakness, and excessive myofascial tension, contributing to shoulder impingement symptoms.
If you want to know which category you fall under and how best to address your specific limitations, stop by BEAT for an evaluation.