3 Shoulder Exercises to Loosen Frozen Shoulders

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shoulder pain

Have you noticed your shoulders ache, crunch, or flat out prohibit you from doing normal daily activities? Has dressing yourself, opening doors, or lifting objects become problematic? If so, read on! Dr. Grace Walker, physical and occupational therapist, will help you understand why shoulder pain can occur, and what you can do.

Why do my shoulders hurt?

Your shoulders are one of the most intricate parts of your body. For that reason, they can be one of the easiest areas to injure. Some of the smallest muscles in the shoulder are actually the most important. For instance, the rotator cuff includes four small muscles that are vital to its movement in each direction. If these muscles become weak or injured, the humerus bone can actually make contact with the socket of the shoulder blade.

What can I do about my hurting shoulders?

  1. Postural exercises to align shoulders– Shoulder pain and injury is commonly a result of poor posture. Extended periods of poor posture at work, home, and even while driving can change the mechanics of the joint movement.
  2. Rotator cuff strengthening– Strong rotator cuffs will help your shoulders get through your daily activities with less pain. Less pain leads to less opportunity for an inflammatory response to occur. One simple exercise that can be done at home is as follows: Begin by lying down on your side with your top arm point straight to the ceiling. Next, swing your arm down 90 degrees so that your hand is flat on your hip. Repeat this 10-15 times a day, twice a day. This exercise is meant to build rotator cuff strength simple by using gravity as resistance. If you have difficulty completing this exercise without pain, please speak with one of our therapist.
  3. Build scapular stability- The scapula, or shoulder blades, are a crucial part of your shoulder complex. They are composed of many different small muscles used to guide your shoulder through its entire range of motion; pulling, pushing, and reaching. An exercise you can do at home to improve scapular stability is done standing against a wall and gently trying to pinch your shoulder blades together while keeping your arms relaxed. Do this for 10-15 repetitions, holding for five seconds each time. This can also be done twice each day.

By working these 3 simple actions into your daily routine, you can be on your way to reducing or overcoming shoulder pain. At Walker Physical Therapy and Pain Center, we have trained therapist to help design physical therapy programs to increase shoulder strength. We come up with personalized programs for each patient to provide results in a fun and healing environment.

Call Walker Physical Therapy and Pain Center to schedule an appointment with an expert and caring physical therapist!

 1111 W. Town and Country Rd., Ste. 1

Orange, CA 92868

Phone: (714) 997-5518

www.walkerpt.com

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Bursitis: How Treatment has Changed Throughout the Years

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Dr. Grace Walker, physical and occupational therapist and nutritionist, has an interesting history lesson for you regarding bursitis. Bursitis affects many men and women all over the world. In the past, bursitis used to be an easy way to write of pain that was difficult to diagnose. Ancient methods were utilized to treat symptoms. These techniques could be painful, and down-right scary!

 

What is bursitis?

Bursitis is the inflammation (-itis) of a bursa. The bursa is a sac filled with lubricating fluid, located between tissues such as bone, muscle tendons and skin. The job of a bursa is to decrease rubbing, friction, and irritation. Bursitis often occurs in (but is not limited to) shoulders, elbows, hips or knees.

Symptoms can build gradually, or have sudden onset. Severe loss of motion and joint pain may be a sign to go take a visit to the doctor, and get a proper diagnosis. Chronic inflammation can lead to calcification and bone spurs, which can be extremely aggravating and may need surgery to be removed.

 

What treatments are available for bursitis?

In the past, people were using a treatment that dates back to ancient Greece for removing bursitis known as bloodletting. Just as it sounds, it involves draining blood from the area. It was believed that removing blood from different areas could cure diseases and relieve pain. The practice was recommended by physicians and carried out by barbers! This is why barbers have red-and-white poles; red is for blood, white is for bandages. Of course, this practice is no longer carried out in modern medicine (not is America, at least). If you do find someone who offers to perform bloodletting on you, there’s no evidence it will heal your bursitis; and remember, your insurance probably won’t cover it!

Since the development of evidence-based medicine has come into the picture, treatment for bursitis has progressed. Some options include oral and injectable steroids, and physical therapy. The steroids that are used can be helpful, but also might have their own set of complications. Orally, they can cause weight gain, and alter hormone balance. If injected, they can cause damage to soft tissue, which could cause a bursa to be weakened or rupture.

Physical therapy is frequently performed. Modalities, safe exercise, and hands on treatment from trained physical therapist can often be enough to reduce and break the cycle of inflammation. Inflammation is the root cause of bursitis, once it is reduced, pain will be decreased and range of motion will increase. Beyond that, physical therapy does not have the complications that come with steroid treatment.

 

At Walker Physical Therapy and Pain Center, our professional therapists are experienced in treating bursitis. They will not only help you understand you condition, they will teach you how to identify and interpret pain triggers and patterns.

Call Walker Physical Therapy and Pain Center to schedule an appointment with an expert physical therapist.

(714) 997-5518

1111 W. Town and Country Rd., Ste. 1

Orange, CA 92868

www.walkerpt.com

 

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Super Bowl Players Need Super Shoulder! 3 Tips for Sore Shoulders.

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Super Bowl 51 is around the corner! Consider the following when you see your favorite players putting their shoulders down and taking hits!

Dr. Grace Walker, physical and occupational therapist, finds physical therapy to be extremely effective in treating shoulder pain and injuries. Current researchers agree. Many people will report shoulder pain at one point or another, statistically between 7 and 26% of the population report shoulder problems at any one time. Up to 50% of patients who have been diagnosed with shoulder pain are referred to a physical therapist for treatment.  (Dolder 50)

Young man having shoulder joint pain

The effects of techniques employed by physical therapist “have been shown to have an immediate effect on patient pain, range of motion, and disability.” (Dolder 54) If you are experiencing mild onset of shoulder pain, these three quick tips, listed below, may be used to try to avoid the worsening of symptoms.

  1. Strengthen the supporting muscle groups

    • Strengthening of the muscles that innervate (intersect) the shoulder and rotor cuff, such as those originating from the chest, under the arms, and back. Strength in these areas will increase foundational support necessary for the shoulder to go through the entire range of motion, pain-free.
  2. Shoulder stretches

    • Many common stretches, often utilizing a doorway or wall corner, before and after strenuous activity.
  3. Icing

    • Immediately after any activities that may be impactful to reduce the chances and severity of inflammation.

At Walker Physical Therapy and Pain Center, we have an effective program for patients with shoulder pain. We develop specific exercise and stretching programs for specific patients, along with a variety of specialized treatments to reduce pain and regain range of motion and strength. We look at the “root cause” when treating the shoulder to provide insight as to why the patient is experiencing pain, instead of just a quick fix!

We come up with personalized programs for each patient to provide results in a fun and healing environment. Call Walker Physical Therapy & Pain Center to schedule an appointment with an expert and caring physical therapist!

1111 W. Town and Country Rd. Ste. 1

Orange, CA 92868

Phone: 714-997-5518

Refrences:
Dolder. J Man Manip Ther. 2010 Mar; 18(1): 50–54. doi:  10.1179/106698110X12595770849687 PMCID: PMC3103116.
Is soft tissue massage an effective treatment for mechanical shoulder pain? A study protocol.
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3 Home Exercise to Relieve Shoulder Pain

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shoulder pain

Have you noticed your shoulders ache, crunch, or flat out prohibit you from doing normal daily activities? Has dressing yourself, opening doors, or lifting objects become problematic? If so, read on! Dr. Grace Walker, physical and occupational therapist, will help you understand why shoulder pain can occur, and what you can do.

Why do my shoulders hurt?

Your shoulders are one of the most intricate parts of your body. For that reason, they can be one of the easiest areas to injure. Some of the smallest muscles in the shoulder are actually the most important. For instance, the rotator cuff includes four small muscles that are vital to its movement in each direction. If these muscles become weak or injured, the humerus bone can actually make contact with the socket of the shoulder blade.

What can I do about my hurting shoulders?

  1. Postural exercises to align shoulders– Shoulder pain and injury is commonly a result of poor posture. Extended periods of poor posture at work, home, and even while driving can change the mechanics of the joint movement.
  2. Rotator cuff strengthening– Strong rotator cuffs will help your shoulders get through your daily activities with less pain. Less pain leads to less opportunity for an inflammatory response to occur. One simple exercise that can be done at home is as follows: Begin by lying down on your side with your top arm point straight to the ceiling. Next, swing your arm down 90 degrees so that your hand is flat on your hip. Repeat this 10-15 times a day, twice a day. This exercise is meant to build rotator cuff strength simple by using gravity as resistance. If you have difficulty completing this exercise without pain, please speak with one of our therapist.
  3. Build scapular stability- The scapula, or shoulder blades, are a crucial part of your shoulder complex. They are composed of many different small muscles used to guide your shoulder through its entire range of motion; pulling, pushing, and reaching. An exercise you can do at home to improve scapular stability is done standing against a wall and gently trying to pinch your shoulder blades together while keeping your arms relaxed. Do this for 10-15 repetitions, holding for five seconds each time. This can also be done twice each day.

By working these 3 simple actions into your daily routine, you can be on your way to reducing or overcoming shoulder pain. At Walker Physical Therapy and Pain Center, we have trained therapist to help design physical therapy programs to increase shoulder strength. We come up with personalized programs for each patient to provide results in a fun and healing environment.

Call Walker Physical Therapy and Pain Center to schedule an appointment with an expert and caring physical therapist!

 1111 W. Town and Country Rd., Ste. 1

Orange, CA 92868

Phone: (714) 997-5518

www.walkerpt.com

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3 Shoulder Exercises To Alleviate Pain, Aches, Pops, and Crunches

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shoulder pain

Have you noticed your shoulders ache, crunch, or flat out prohibit you from doing normal daily activities? Has dressing yourself, opening doors, or lifting objects become problematic? If so, read on! Dr. Grace Walker, physical and occupational therapist, will help you understand why shoulder pain can occur, and what you can do.

Why do my shoulders hurt?

Your shoulders are one of the most intricate parts of your body. For that reason, they can be one of the easiest areas to injure. Some of the smallest muscles in the shoulder are actually the most important. For instance, the rotator cuff includes four small muscles that are vital to its movement in each direction. If these muscles become weak or injured, the humerus bone can actually make contact with the socket of the shoulder blade.

What can I do about my hurting shoulders?

  1. Postural exercises to align shoulders– Shoulder pain and injury is commonly a result of poor posture. Extended periods of poor posture at work, home, and even while driving can change the mechanics of the joint movement.
  2. Rotator cuff strengthening– Strong rotator cuffs will help your shoulders get through your daily activities with less pain. Less pain leads to less opportunity for an inflammatory response to occur. One simple exercise that can be done at home is as follows: Begin by lying down on your side with your top arm point straight to the ceiling. Next, swing your arm down 90 degrees so that your hand is flat on your hip. Repeat this 10-15 times a day, twice a day. This exercise is meant to build rotator cuff strength simple by using gravity as resistance. If you have difficulty completing this exercise without pain, please speak with one of our therapist.
  3. Build scapular stability- The scapula, or shoulder blades, are a crucial part of your shoulder complex. They are composed of many different small muscles used to guide your shoulder through its entire range of motion; pulling, pushing, and reaching. An exercise you can do at home to improve scapular stability is done standing against a wall and gently trying to pinch your shoulder blades together while keeping your arms relaxed. Do this for 10-15 repetitions, holding for five seconds each time. This can also be done twice each day.

By working these 3 simple actions into your daily routine, you can be on your way to reducing or overcoming shoulder pain. At Walker Physical Therapy and Pain Center, we have trained therapist to help design physical therapy programs to increase shoulder strength. We come up with personalized programs for each patient to provide results in a fun and healing environment.

 

Call Walker Physical Therapy and Pain Center to schedule an appointment with an expert and caring physical therapist!

 

 1111 W. Town and Country Rd., Ste. 1

Orange, CA 92868

Phone: (714) 997-5518

www.walkerpt.com

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Worplace Ergonomics- Monitors: More Important Than You May Think! Part 3 of 4

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businesswoman working on laptop with neck pain

Dr. Grace Walker, physical and occupational therapist, shares tips on how to design an ergonomic workspace! This is a four part series, today being part 3 of 4. We will be looking at the ergonomic placement and utilization of your computer monitor.

Finding the correct monitor and placing it in the proper position helps reduce exposure to forceful exertions and awkward postures. On top of easing shoulder and neck tension, this helps to prevent other adverse effects such as excessive fatigue and eye strain.

Here are four quick tips to keep in mind when selecting and positioning your computer monitor.

  1. Put your monitor directly in front of you and at least 20 inches away. Viewing distances that are too long can cause you to lean forward and strain to see small text. Distances that are too short may require you to sit in awkward positions to be able to read correctly.
  2. Position the monitor so the top line is at or below eye level. A quick solution for raising the monitor is either a new monitor stand or a stack of wide, heavy books. A display screen that is too high or low will cause you to work with your head, neck or back in awkward positions.
  3. Place your monitor perpendicular to any windows to prevent eye stain due to a glare on the screen. Eye strain can eventually lead to neck and shoulder stain from leaning in to see past glare.
  4. Laptops and tablets are the least ergonomic form of computing! The benefits of using a desktop computer include the ability to adjust the height and distance of the monitor and space computer components, such as the keyboard and mouse, away from each other. Use laptops and tablets only when you must.

At Walker Physical Therapy and Pain Center, we have the ability to address all of the potential variables that may be causing pain related to lack of ergonomic support and repetitive motion injuries that may occur at home or in the workplace. We specialize in working to find the root cause of your ailments, and correcting them.

We come up with personalized programs for each patient to provide results in a fun and healing environment that is affordable. Call Walker Physical Therapy and Pain Center to schedule an appointment with an expert and caring physical therapist!

1111 W. Town and Country Rd., Ste. 1

Orange, CA 92868

Phone: (714) 997-5518

http://walkerpt.com

 

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Workplace Ergonomics- Chairish the Hot Seat! Part 1 of 4.

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sleep at work illustration

Dr. Grace Walker, physical and occupational therapist, shares tips on how to design an ergonomic workspace! This will be a four part series, starting today with the importance of choosing a good chair.

Prolonged use of equipment at home or at work that is not ergonomic can lead to many ailments such as carpal tunnel, ulnar and medial nerve inflammation, and also shoulder, neck and back pain.

A good chair is an important investment, just as important as picking a good mattress. There is a good chance you spend just as much time, if not more, sitting in your chair as you do sleeping in your bed! Here are three important tips to consider next time you are in your chair at work or if you are shopping for a new chair.

  1. Chair backs should conform to your back, and the chair should raise up high enough to keep your shoulders at east when you work.
  2. The seat should allow your feet to rest flat on the floor or on a footrest.
  3. Armrest should be soft and allow your shoulders to be relaxed when used.

At Walker Physical Therapy and Pain Center, we have the ability to address all of the potential variables that may be causing pain related to lack of ergonomic support and repetitive motion injuries that may occur at home or in the workplace. We specialize in working to find the root cause of your ailments, and correcting them.

We come up with personalized programs for each patient to provide results in a fun and healing environment. Call Walker Physical Therapy and Pain Center to schedule an appointment with an expert and caring physical therapist!

 

Stay tuned for the next installment of our Workplace Ergonomics series!

 

1111 W. Town and Country Rd., Ste. 1

Orange, CA 92868

Phone: (714) 997-5518

www.walkerpt.com

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Dr. Grace Walker,Physical and Occupational Therapist uses Trigger Point Therapy

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Dr. Grace Walker, a physical and occupational therapist and nutritionist is the director of Walker Physical Therapy & Pain Center in Orange County, California. She holds doctoral degrees in both physical and occupational therapy from the Rocky Mountain University of Health Professions.

In her work as an occupational and a physical therapist, Dr. Grace Walker routinely uses pressure point release techniques (Trigger Point Therapy). Pressure point release techniques provide that gentle but firm pressure  on these points and can help to relieve pain and inflammation.

 A common cause of persistent and strange aches and pains that usually go under-diagnosed are pressure points , or muscle knots. Most of these trigger points (TrPs) are common and, on condition that you are educated on where each trigger point is, they can be massaged at home! These TrPs are the most useful and satisfying areas to apply pressure to muscle.

Even without symptoms, pressure point techniques on these muscles is still important since they usually harbor latent pressure points— points not obvious until they are pressed. These are also normally responsible for stiffness, vague discomfort, and aching.

For an appointment with an expert physical therapist call Walker Physical Therapy and Pain Center at 714-997-5518.

 

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