Rotator Cuff Tear Rehabilitation
Why go through all that you have, the pain, the hard work just to stop now and allow it all to go to waste? Similarly if you are into sports involving a lot of overhead work there is a chance you may develop a problem with the rotator cuff in the future.
Do not forget a high proportion of us develop rotator cuff problems as we get older. People who are generally active are less likely to be affected by rotator cuff problems so it is clear that rotator cuff exercise benefits all. So just exactly what is rotator cuff strengthening and how is it achieved.
Resistance TrainingThe most popular form of resistance training involves the use of weights. The idea is to selectively and progressively train specific muscles to build strength over a period of time.
What I want to focus on is what is known as Progressive Resistance Exercise (PRE). PRE is the most popular form of resistance training and is an ideal program for strengthening exercises for rotator cuff problems.
Progressive Resistance ExerciseBasic progressive resistance exercise programs were first developed after World War Two. It was at this time researchers developed weight training schedules to improve the strength of injured limbs.
The procedure involved a structured approach of using three sets of exercises, each consisting of 10 repetitions, done one after another, without resting. These basic principles still apply today although I discuss variations below.
The first thing that must be done is to establish what the maximum weight is that you can use and still be able to perform an exercise 10 times; this becomes your "10-RM" weight.
This will vary for everyone so it is important that you find out for yourself. If you can comfortably do 15 repetitions it is too light and if you struggle to do 7 it is too heavy.
Pick a weight that you can do 10 times but feel an eleventh attempt would be beyond you. This is the starting point for you to strengthen rotator cuff muscles so it is important to get it right.
Once you have established your 10-RM you should do three sets of 10 repetitions. The first set requires one half of the maximum weight, or ½ 10-RM; the second set uses ¾ 10-RM and the final set 10-RM requires maximum weight.
So let's say the maximum weight you can do 10 repetitions with is 4lbs then that becomes you 10-RM weight. Your ½ 10-RM weight is therefore 2lbs and your ¾ 10-RM weight is 3lbs.
What was found by following this particular method was that certainly strength increased. As this happened then the weight used for the 10-RM measurement had to be increased accordingly.
This is necessary to allow for continued strength improvements. Remember that muscles increase in strength when trained close to their current force generating capacity.
One interesting point noted was that it mattered little in which order the sets were performed. Similar strength improvements occurred even when reversing the intensity progression; so doing the 10-RM first had the same results as starting with the 1/2 10-RM.
This little video although directed at the golfer explains the basic principles very well. The video details an external rotation rotator cuff exercise. The presenter starts with 6-8 repetitions but the principles remain the same.
Variations of PRE over timeOver the years studies into PRE and rotator cuff tear rehabilitation schedules have attempted to improve on the basic model. A lot of work has gone in to try to determine the optimal amount of exercise to be undertaken.
Things like the number of sets and repetitions, including frequency and relative intensity of PRE training for maximum strength improvement.
Remember that a lot of these studies are targeted at serious weight lifting. This is not what rotator cuff exercise or rotator cuff tear rehabilitation is necessarily about but it is interesting and the findings are generally as follows.
Remember your rotator cuff tear rehabilitation is not aimed at turning you into a world class weight lifter.
You simply need to work on some basic exercises for rotator cuff problems that will strengthen rotator cuff muscles.
What is clear from the above information is that this can be achieved fairly easily. Even if you start with this minimal program you will strengthen rotator cuff muscles and complete your rotator cuff tear rehabilitation.
It really can be that simple. If that is all you can squeeze in then at least complete this limited workout.
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