Made up of four tendons and muscles, the rotator cuff is an important structure that helps to keep the shoulder joint stable during lifting and rotating motions. Rotator cuff injuries can happen to anyone at any age. They’re particularly common in those who lift weights or play sports which involve a lot of shoulder motions, such as tennis or baseball. With this in mind, active individuals should take steps to prevent rotator cuff injury. Here are a few strategies for avoiding rotator cuff tears and related shoulder injuries.
How to Prevent Rotator Cuff Injury
- – Take time to stretch – There are many stretches designed to strengthen the rotator cuff muscles and tendons. Performing these simple exercises on a daily basis will go a long way to prevent rotator cuff injury.
- – Be mindful of your form – Working out or playing sports with improper form can put significant stress on the rotator cuff, thus making an injury more likely to occur. To avoid shoulder issues, focus on keeping good form while participating in athletic activities.
- – Take frequent breaks – When you’re tired, it becomes more difficult to maintain proper form. In turn, it’s important to take breaks often to avoid overexerting yourself and to prevent rotator cuff injury.
- – Adjust your routine as needed – If you begin to experience shoulder discomfort, you should take time off from your normal activities to rest. Symptoms of a rotator cuff injury include shoulder pain and weakness, a popping sensation with arm movement and trouble lifting objects as usual. Furthermore, if you have had a shoulder injury in the past, you should avoid exercises and activities that place a large amount of stress on the rotator cuff in order to prevent repeat injury.
By following these tips, athletes of all ages can greatly reduce their chances of developing a rotator cuff tear or another shoulder injury.
Seeking Treatment for a Rotator Cuff Injury
Sometimes, a shoulder injury can occur even when you take steps to prevent rotator cuff injury. If you are experiencing symptoms of a rotator cuff injury, it is advisable to see an orthopedic surgeon as soon as possible. This medical professional will diagnose your shoulder condition and help you determine the best course of treatment. By seeking treatment sooner rather than later, you will maximize your chances of making a full and fast recovery.
For patients in the Reading, PA area, Dr. Stephen Soffer provides compassionate and dependable orthopedic care. Holding board certification in both orthopedic surgery and orthopedic sports medicine, he has the skills and knowledge needed to care for any shoulder condition, including a rotator cuff injury.
If you would like to arrange an appointment with Dr. Soffer, please call our office at 610-375-4949. Our goal is to help you manage your symptoms effectively so that you can return to an active and satisfying lifestyle.