Are you a tennis playing who is having shoulder pain?
Tennis is a very physically demanding sport that requires a lot of movement in all sorts of different directions. This being said, a lot of tennis players commonly complain of shoulder pain and we are here to explain that this is not always the case. Below are a few examples on why you may be experiencing shoulder pain and how you can help fix it.
In a study done from Zazluk in 2007, it showed that tennis players without adequate bend in the knees (ankle dorsiflexion), had increased load into the shoulder by 23-27% on the serve. By not having adequate knee bend, the force that it takes to generate that same power puts excess stress on the shoulder and makes it more prone to injury. If you think you are having problems with this you can use SMFR (self myofascial release) to your calves using a foam roller or my favorite a wine bottle! Find little tender spots on your calf and hold this pressure for 1 minute each tender spot.
In the same study from above, it also looked at how the core plays a major role in decreasing the amount of stress into the shoulder. It showed that if you had a decrease in 20% of the kinetic energy developed by the drunk (core stability), this resulted in 34% more shoulder velocity or 80% more shoulder mass to deliver the same energy to the ball! That means if your core is functioning not properly just a little bit it would take almost twice as much muscle to develop the same force into the ball! Two staples in our office that put no excess stress into the spine is plank and side plank. We like to hold the planks for about 6 seconds each rep while squeezing the butt to get better core activation! For the side plank, we like to hold for 2 seconds at the top and then come back down.
Decreased Hip mobility
This study also looked at people who got shoulder surgeries specifically to the labrum and it showed that 49% of people who had this surgery also suffered from decreased hip rotation and abduction strength. We have a stretch called Bretzel 2.0 which is very good at opening up the hips and getting better hip rotation which is very important in tennis. Another exercise called clam shells that strengthen your hip abductors. Make sure with this exercise that you are not opening up your hips but just raising your leg about 4 inches from the starting position.
If you are not sure what is the cause of your shoulder problems or are not sure what muscles may be tight you should contact your movement specialist or come see us at Sports Chiropractic Institute. We have a list of photos of these exercises on Instagram if you would like to see what they look like. We would love to help you maximize your performance on the court and keep you playing tennis as long as you want! (770)-438-8990