Effective Exercises for Shoulder Pain for Older Women

Shoulder pain for older women can become a real plight, but it’s not all bad news. Read on for advice on how to be free of shoulder pain.  

How to manage pain with physiotherapy

As women age, shoulder pain can become a more common occurrence. Whether it is due to hormone-related changes or simply wear and tear from years of use, there are several things that women over 50 can do to alleviate their shoulder pain and get back to their normal activities. Here are some physiotherapy tips tailored to women over 50 for treating shoulder pain:
  1. Relative rest: It’s important to rest the affected area and avoid any activities that cause pain or discomfort. Women over 50 should be especially careful with lifting heavy objects or performing overhead activities that may exacerbate shoulder pain.
  2. Ice or Heat: Applying ice or heat to the affected area can help to alleviate pain and discomfort. Women over 50 should be mindful of any skin changes or decreased sensation that may occur with age, and apply ice or heat for shorter periods of time or with a protective barrier.
  3. Shoulder Exercises: Specific shoulder exercises can help to strengthen the muscles around the joint and improve range of motion. Women over 50 may benefit from exercises that focus on improving posture and balance as well as strengthening the rotator cuff muscles.
  4. Posture Correction: Poor posture can contribute to shoulder pain. A physiotherapist can assess your posture and recommend exercises to help correct any imbalances that may be contributing to your pain. Women over 50 may be especially prone to developing kyphosis (rounded shoulders) and may need exercises to address this issue.
  5. Manual Therapy: Manual therapy techniques such as massage and mobilisation can help to relieve pain and improve range of motion. These techniques should only be performed by a qualified physiotherapist.
  6. Anti-inflammatory Medications: Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) can help to reduce pain and inflammation in the shoulder. Women over 50 should be cautious with taking medications and only use them under the guidance of a healthcare professional and should only be used for short periods.

General Shoulder Pain Exercises

One of the best ways to do this is through targeted exercises that strengthen and stretch the muscles surrounding the shoulder joint. Your physiotherapist can work with you to create a personalised exercise plan that addresses your unique needs and goals. Some exercises that may be beneficial for shoulder pain include:
  1. Shoulder blade squeeze: Sit or stand up straight, then pull your shoulder blades together and hold for five seconds. Release and repeat 10-15 times.
  2. Wall push-up: Stand facing a wall with your arms extended at shoulder height, then slowly bend your elbows to lower your body towards the wall. Push back up to the starting position and repeat 10-15 times.
  3. Resistance band rotations: Hold a resistance band with both hands and raise your arms to shoulder height. Rotate your arms to the right and left, keeping your elbows straight, and repeat 10-15 times.
  4. Sleeper stretch: Lie on your side with your affected arm resting on a pillow at shoulder height. Gently press your affected hand towards the bed, stretching your shoulder, and hold for 15-30 seconds. Repeat 2-3 times on each side.
These exercises, along with others recommended by your physiotherapist, can help alleviate shoulder pain and improve mobility. If you’re experiencing shoulder pain in North Sydney, don’t hesitate to seek the advice of a physiotherapist to get started on the path to pain-free movement.      
By Caitlan Skillicorn, Senior Physiotherapist

Shoulder injuries how to assess, diagnose and treat: Healthfix Physiotherapy advice

Shoulder injuries how to assess, diagnose and treat: Healthfix Physiotherapy advice

  By Caitlan Skillicorn,  Senior Physiotherapist M. Physio & B. Ex. and Sport Sc.  

Your shoulder: what you need to know

  • Its the most unstable joint in the body (imagine a golf ball on a tea or a beach ball on dinner plate!)
  • Its the only upper body bony attachment where the sternum and clavicle meet
  • The muscles and ligaments are heavily relied on for stability due to the range of movement the joint can function in. The two groups involved in shoulder activation include:
  1. Stabilisers – Rotator cuff (supraspinatus, infraspinatus, subscapularis and teres minor)
  2. Movers – Deltoid, Pectoral muscles, serratus, lats, traps

How do Physiotherapist’s assess shoulder pain?

The subjective assessment will drive the objective assessment, this means that we delve into the cause of the pain first by getting a thorough history from you including:
  • Any history of trauma such as a fall
  • If there has been a sudden increase in training loads (gym, housework, renovations etc)
  • How long you have experienced pain for especially if it is low levels of pain for a long period of time
After reviewing this information, we then do a series of objective testing to see how your shoulder is moving and which movements elicit a pain response, these may include:
  • Active range of movements and repeated movements to see if any fatigue changes the movement pattern
  • Resisted movements
  • Special tests and manual muscle testing using a device
The purpose of these tests are to see what movements produce pain or limitations amongst the anatomy of your shoulder.  

How do Physiotherapist’s diagnose your shoulder complaint?

The three key areas physiotherapists use to diagnose shoulder injuries include:
  • Is it torn? (trauma or degenerative)
  • Is it stiff? (frozen shoulder, osteoarthritis, post-operative)
  • Is it irritable? (tendinopathy, bursitis etc)

When is it likely that your symptoms are not actually coming from your shoulder?

Often we find that clients symptoms are not directly related to their shoulder. The most common indications of this are if you experience:
  • Nerve related symptoms so things like pins and needles, numbness or burning sensation in your hands and fingers
  • If experience pain specifically in the upper trapeziues muscles
  • If you have restricted neck range of movement
  • If these are true then it is most likely that you

If you are unsure if you need to see a Physiotherapist

The most common complaint we see in active clients who are training in the gym is impingement which means the pain is triggered at the end of the range of movement or after 90 degrees of flexion. If this is you we recommend you change the angle of your movement and reduce the weight and volume (kgs and reps) and if symptoms don’t settle within a week then your best off to see a Physiotherapist for assessment and treatment.   Do you have a shoulder issue or are unsure about whether physiotherapy treatment will help your condition? To arrange to speak with one of our expert physiotherapists get in touch with us now! getfixed@healthfix.com.au        

Young Athlete Development

Written by Caitlan Skillicorn, Senior Physiotherapist
M.Sports Medicine (completion date 2022) M. Physio, & B. Ex. and Sport Sc. Head of Performance at Gladesville Ravens.   High performance sport is becoming increasingly important in our world and as a result, stakeholders are making large financial investments to develop strategic and systematic approaches to developing athletes. This is pushing talent identification earlier and earlier. So, to keep up with this development programs now occur at youth levels. Children are not mini adults and therefore maturation status must be accounted for when planning a program and pathway to elite athlete status. Gold standard programming must include the unique variables and understanding of:
  1. Physical development relative to age and training history
  2. Nutrition relative to education and performance level
  3. Injury risk relative to age-related changes and training demands
At Healthfix in our gym in North Sydney, we understand these underlying principles and have systemised programs to give our athlete’s the best chance of making their dreams come true. An integral part of any high performance program is strength and conditioning. The development of not only a player’s technical ability but their physical capabilities has become increasingly important, with players who can out run, out jump and dominant their opposition on the ball have increased their selection chances and decreased their injury risk. Not only do we teach our athletes the correct movement patterns and improve their confidence in the gym environment but also development their athletic potential, giving the best chance to be the best athlete they can be. Who would benefit from a Youth Athlete development program?
  • School aged youth 10-17 ·
  • Youth athletes looking for that extra edge over their competitors
  • Want to enhance performance characteristics related to their sport
  • Need a more robust gym program to supplement their sport
If you are interested in more information on our Young Guns Program please get in touch  getfixed@healthfix.com.au

New Exercise Physiologist – Liz Orrock

Liz Orrock

Introducing Liz Orrock

We are really excited to announce with the expansion of Healthfix we are welcoming a new Exercise Physiologist into our team Liz Orrock. Liz comes with a wealth of experience having completed her Bachelor of Clinical Exercise Physiology with distinction through the University of New England. Over the past 10 years she has been a massage therapist and also lectured in sports massage. She has worked in-conjunction with a team of physiotherapists treating people ranging from elite athletes to general clinical populations. She’s also been  running her own business combining massage with exercise prescription whilst completing her studies. Liz felt compelled to get into Exercise Physiology from massage after she had the privilege of caring for a wonderful woman who had Parkinson’s disease. From that experience she felt driven to learn more about how to help people like her as well as others with ranging illnesses and injuries. She is so grateful to be able to do that now and  very excited to get back to working in a multidisciplinary team environment.

So what does Liz like to get up to in her spare time?

She has a passion for travelling with her husband and family and can’t wait be able to do so again.  She also enjoys being outdoor whether going for a swim in the ocean, hiking, of course some strength training or  walking her dog aptly named chicken. You can see Liz’s passion for travel and people in the picture, here she is in the Maldives where she went in 2019 to teach the local women how to swim and all about exercise programs. Book in to see Liz today.
The Healthfix difference

The Healthfix difference | 5 ways we’re a health club (not a gym)

1. We look at you and your health as part of a whole.

Integratively. Holistically. Think of it like this: were you to fall down the stairs and hurt your hip, as a health club, we would look at the root cause of the injury, not just the prevailing symptoms.  Our approach is about bringing people back to base level exercise and fitness. This, of course, has multiple benefits – sure, the physical, but it also shores up mental and emotional strength.

2. Number one is to heal.

Healing is the immediate cessation of what might be bothering you. It could be, and often is, pain. But it might also be a mood, or lack of motivation, or zero energy. Finding and fixing that initial touchpoint is the first step on the road to a healthier you. And because we’re big on making our people feel connected, Healthfix has a strong focus on socialising and fostering community. We believe if the mind is right, the body follows. 

3. The second? To restore.

Sure, you’re moving okay. Maybe even exercising a little. But you’re not where you want to be in terms of physical function. Our team of trainers, therapists and experts can get you back up and running, literally or figuratively.

4. Okay, feeling good! Let’s make it your new baseline.

The foundation from where you can springboard to excellent health and fitness? Nothing gives us more joy than seeing our clients go from strength to strength. (Even if that means they don’t need us any more.)

5. Now for some serious health goals…

We’re excited to help you get to them. Some of our favourites have included running a marathon, losing 20kg, managing depression, having a baby and, our favourite (believe it or not), never seeing a physiotherapist again! We believe healthcare is simple, and that the right metrics can help truly measure your success. We believe in equipping you with the correct strategies and education so you can look after yourself. We believe that by focusing on excellent health  outcomes, not negative pain points, you can leave a healthier person. (And our team remains passionate about what they do, which helps even more people become healthier.) Wherever you are on your health journey, we have the training program to help you get even further. Because our driving force is never “how bad is it?” – it’s “how good would you like to feel?”. So. How good would you like to feel? Let’s talk.