Rotator Cuff Injuries

It seems that rotator cuff injuries must be “contagious”! So many tennis playing friends have been suffering with this ailment. Here is some good information relayed by my good buddy Marc VanDam.

Studies show that forces equivalent to at least 120 percent of a person’s body weight slam through the rotator cuff during a typical tennis serve or baseball pitch. To withstand that pounding, the rotator cuff needs to be strong.

But many of us, including tennis players, have relatively weak rotator cuff muscles. “Playing tennis builds up the muscles in the front of the shoulder, but it doesn’t build up those in the back very much,” says Todd Ellenbecker, the clinic director at Physiotherapy Associates Scottsdale Sports Club in Scottsdale, Ariz., and senior director of medical services for the ATP World Tour, the men’s professional tennis circuit.

To isolate and strengthen the rotator cuff, Mr. Ellenbecker recommends simple exercises that you can do at home and that require only a stretchy exercise band or length of elastic tubing and a rolled-up towel. You can find more information and step-by-step instructions for a number of these exercises, which Mr. Ellenbecker prescribes for professional tennis players, at “How to Fix a Bad Tennis Shoulder.”

Don’t wait to start the program, by the way, until your shoulders ache. “These exercises are excellent for preventing shoulder injuries,” Mr. Ellenbecker said, “in addition to rehabilitating injured shoulders.”

How is YOUR shoulder doing? And what are you doing?

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2 thoughts on “Rotator Cuff Injuries

  1. I have had two Rotator Cuff surgeries and I have found finally that the best exercise
    is an elastic band attached to a door knob. Pull on both ends of the band toward your body and compress the scapulas behind the shoulder together Do this every other day for 3 series of 15 each

    Dick – that is the same series i use! tks, george

  2. Not nit picking but that specific exercise help correct
    The imbalance of posterior weakness…. Which does help to strengthning indirectly the rotator cuff indirectly.. I do this one also by the way. Very important for us “office sitters”

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