Shoulder Pain from Contact Sports

Nov 9, 2021

Shoulder-Pain-from-Contact-SportsWhether you play hockey, boxing, football, or even soccer, there is the potential for injury in contact sports. Professional players keep medics and chiropractors on hand because of the frequency of injury, but you don’t have to be an NFL player to need care in response to contact sports. As such a complex joint, the shoulder is one of the primary sites of injury during contact sports. It’s important to prevent these problems, but if you do suffer from an injury, seeking out shoulder pain chiropractic care will ensure you recover quickly and can play again soon.

How Shoulder Pain Happens

The shoulder actually contains two joints and is made up of three bones. The shoulder blade, collarbone, and upper arm bone meet, and these joints provide a wide range of movement in all directions. This allows us to perform complex arm movements, including those used to throw a football and other similar motions. Because of this additional movement, the shoulder has less support than other joints. Any blunt force trauma can interrupt this careful process, leading to pain and other symptoms.

A lack of muscle strength can cause stress on these joints, even when minimal force is used. If the shoulder can’t handle a load, it relies on surrounding muscles in the back, neck, and arms. Over time, this creates poor body mechanics and can even injure surrounding areas. Even when there is strength in the muscle, overuse can cause chronic pain if proper rest and recovery are not implemented.

Left untreated, these injuries can become chronic problems that limit range of motion or flexibility, leading to the inability to play sports in the future.

Preventing Shoulder Pain

If you play a contact sport or even perform another work task that requires daily use of the shoulder muscles, it’s important to try to prevent injuries to the shoulder before they begin. In sports, this means pre-season measures should be taken, such as strengthening exercises for the muscle groups that you will use most.

A holistic approach to training is recommended, which includes rest. You should put maximum effort into practice sessions and the same amount of effort into recovery between sessions. Intentionally giving muscles time to stretch and rest can prevent overexertion.

The use of compression is also helpful to prevent pain. A compression top during training can increase blood flow and reduce inflammation.

Most injuries begin with poor body mechanics, which is why coaches and chiropractors are important to help you understand the basic movements in your sport. Before you move on to complicated motions, master these basic ones.

When You Experience Shoulder Pain

Even with prevention, you could suffer a contact injury or have another problem arise with your shoulder. If this occurs, the first thing to do is follow the RICE method for recovery. This includes Rest, Icing, Compression, and Elevation of the injured area.

Once swelling and pain have subsided, you can ease back into movement. Start with stretches designed for rehabilitation, working with a physical therapist if necessary. Yoga can also be a great recovery exercise when you’ve experienced shoulder and neck pain.

While rest is important to begin with, you should avoid too much rest as you heal. Gentle and careful movement is critical to helping the shoulder regain strength, and prolonged rest can worsen pain and inflammation.

Seeking Shoulder Pain Chiropractic Care

Because the shoulder is complex, it is best to seek care from a specialist for even minor injuries. If you experience any shoulder pain, an expert will be able to discuss your symptoms and perform physical evaluations that help to pinpoint the exact source of the issue. Once they determine the muscles that are causing you pain, these professionals can create a treatment plan specific to your injuries and your goals for recovery.

Chiropractic care is one of the top treatments for chronic joint pain. At AICA Lithia Springs, our chiropractors work as part of a larger team of specialists who can treat shoulder pain from a holistic viewpoint. With onsite diagnostic imaging and radiologists, pain management specialists, and physical therapists, AICA Lithia Springs will create your treatment plan with a variety of available therapies all in one place, allowing each person to work together seamlessly. If there is a case where traditional therapies are ineffective, we even have orthopedic surgeons who can explore more invasive treatment options as necessary. If you experience even mild shoulder pain, contacting AICA Lithia Springs is the first step towards ensuring you can continue playing the sport you love.


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