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Content aimed to bridge the gap between rehab and strength training.

Building a strong “posterior dominant” shoulder has been shown to be of great value for the overhead athlete. Based on the demands of the sport (the fact that many great overhead athletes have acquired laxity) and the construct of the joint (the shoulder joint in and of itself sacrifices large amounts of stability for mobility) this anatomical landmark plays an important role in the athletes’ protocol. However many times direct cuff strengthening is overlooked in the practical programming for the contact athlete. Is this valid or do we need to look deeper into preparing our athletes for the demands of their sport? Lets take a look at the evidence regarding shoulder injuries in contact sports.

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The glenohumeral joint is a complex joint affected by the entire Kinetic Chain. It thrives on large amounts of mobility with a sacrifice in stability. At any given time, only 25%-30% of the humeral head is in contact with the gelnoid fossa (1). Sub acromial Impingement (bursal sided) also known as Compressive Cuff disease or external impingement can affect more than just the elderly and working class, it can affect the athletic population as well. Athletes play hard, train hard and push their bodies to the limit on a daily basis. Contact athletes can sustain shoulder injuries through both macro traumatic and micro traumatic events. Shoulder injuries remain the most common site of injury in hockey (1). As strength coaches, programming can also play an important role in preventing cuff issues. A sound knowledge of functional anatomy and appropriate exercise selection can aid in preventing possible pathology.

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Posted by on in Rehabilitation

They say pain can be a humble teacher, a somatic response from the CNS to avoid certain movement/exercise.  After bi-lateral shoulder surgery and enough rehab to make Dr. Drew look like an amateur, I can say that pain has been a humble teacher in helping me design exercise protocol for my current athletes and clients.  In conjunction with these injuries is the education from the likes of Mike Reinold (The Athlete’s Shoulder, Optimal Shoulder Performance), Robert Donatelli  (Physical Therapy for the Shoulder), and Eric Cressey (Optimal Shoulder Performance).  These experts have aided me in the process of designing appropriate screening and protocol for my business.  As coaches, it is our job to design safe and effective exercise.  Below are five ways to enhance the function of the shoulder.

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I’m sure during the coarse of a regular workday many coaches feel overworked, over stretched, and under strengthened.  Being successful takes hard work, early mornings, late nights, hours of deliberate practice and plenty of caffeine.  However, the scope of this article is not about our lives as coaches, but about our athletes and their ability to perform at high levels without setback.  Through hours of screening, education and application, I believe that we have plenty of muscle groups that are either overworked, overstretched or under strengthened.  In some cases, I believe that certain muscle groups fit in all categories.  That’s right!  I do believe that in certain instances we are overstretched!  Below are several examples of the overworked, over stretched, and under strengthened thought process.

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