Have you ever had shoulder pain and wondered why? Or what in the shoulder is causing that kind of pain?
Well let us begin with the basics.

The shoulder joint is composed of three bones, the clavicle, the scapula (shoulder blade), and the humerus. They are connected at four different joints that each plays a role in providing movement at the same time stability.

The shoulders is simply to place and position the fingers of the hand for example we need the shoulder to place our hand in the top shelf to reach for a glass, scratch our back when we have an itch, or reach across our body to put the seatbelt on.

Therefore the relationship between the bones and the ligaments allows the shoulders to have the greatest range of motion in the body.

Pain during these movements is an indication of a shoulder problem and should be addressed to prevent worsening of the problem.

An imbalance in the muscles of the shoulder can be because of lifestyles, for example desk bound occupations predispose one to a slouched posture which then makes the shoulders round towards the front of the body. This results in tight muscles at the front and weak pulled muscles at the back. This is called the Upper cross syndrome.  

The Rotator cuff.

If you have had a shoulder problem and saw a physiotherapist or doctor you may have heard about these muscles called the rotator cuff.

This is a group of four muscles that are small but play a crucial role in fine tuning the movements of the shoulder by securing the bones to the chest.

Balanced strength and flexibility in each of the four muscles are vital to maintain functioning of the entire shoulder. Falling on the shoulder, sprains when lifting heavy objects and other accidents tend to injure these muscles. Wear and tear of the rotator cuff is also very common and is associated with poor posture such as hunching, repetitive overhead activities and rounded shoulders.

Often shoulder pain affects the neck and results in tension and discomfort in your neck.
The shoulder is highly functional and therefore quite complex just like the brain. It is also one of the most common sources of pain and discomfort for more people. Seek medical advice if you experience any discomfort or pain.


  • The Vital Shoulder Complex John Gibson
  • www.physioedia.com

Written By
Joy Waihenya
Chiropractic & Physiotherapy Health Centre

What do you know about the shoulder joint?

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