More on physical therapy; Core strength; Posture.
I’ve had two physical therapy sessions so far, and I’ve learned quite a lot in that short amount of time. I’ve been doing some no-weight exercises that are helping to strengthen muscles in my back and shoulder that I’ve never used before (or haven’t used in many years). Those muscles are really sore right now, which goes to show how little I’ve used them in the past because no weights are involved! It’s all part of working on building my core strength, which will help prevent injuries and also help improve my posture. A big part of what we’re working on is trying to get me to hold my shoulders differently. I didn’t even realize how I tend to pull my shoulder blades up and out so much, especially when lifting. We’re focused on trying to keep my shoulder blades down and back, which should help reduce or eliminate the impingement and tendonitis.
Some other things that my therapist has me doing include: light-weight strengthening exercises similar to the rotator cuff exercises I’ve been doing for a while now; spending time on a machine (sorry, don’t know what it’s called) that I crank forwards and backwards in a circular motion using my arms and shoulders; ultrasound therapy and ice packs.
Over the past few days I’ve been really careful of my posture when I’m sitting in my chair all day. It’s amazing how poor my posture is when I’m at my computer. I’m constantly catching myself slumped down, hunched forward, craning my neck forward and generally sitting with no regard to proper posture. Now that I’m paying attention to how I sit I’ve noticed that I’m already starting to sit correctly more often without much thought. I still catch myself slumping after I’ve been at the computer for a while, but I’m getting better.
I really hope all these things I’m doing will finally free me from the shoulder pain I’ve been living with for the past 7 months. I’m finally starting to realize how critical proper posture and core strength are when it comes to preventing injury. You can’t throw around heavy weights, especially at my age, if your body’s core strength is not prepared for the demands such activities place on the body. The important fundamental concepts of core strength and proper posture are something many weight lifters, myself included, are largely ignorant of. Look for more information on these subjects in future Daily News articles, but in the meantime I encourage you to do some research on your own.
I’m off to do my cardio – have a great day!