Shoulder Injury in Golf and Tennis – Rotator Cuff

Shoulder Pain, Rotator Cuff Injury

A rotator cuff injury, shoulder pain is when you have inflammation or a tear in the muscles or tendons (connecting tissue)or ligaments in your shoulder. It is a common cause of shoulder Pain and can be caused by sudden impact or trauma, or wear and tear with repetitive movements. This injury is common in Golfers during back swing or tennis and badminton with general racket play and overhead shots. Cricket bowlers are also susceptible due to rotational forces with bowling delivery. A rotator cuff injury can make it difficult and painful to do everyday tasks, such as brushing your hair and getting dressed.

Rotator cuff

Your rotator cuff is the group of muscles and tendons that surround your shoulder joint. They work together to keep your shoulder stable and working well. Along with the ligaments that connect the bones in your shoulder together and the capsule that covers your shoulder joint, the rotator cuff helps to keep your shoulder joint in its socket.

Rotator cuff tear

 This is when one or more of the muscles and tendons that make up your rotator cuff tear. You can have a partial tear or a full-thickness tear. Tears can develop after an injury, such as a fall or a dislocated shoulder, or contact in sports like rugby. Small tears can also develop in the tendon after general wear and tear with repetitive sports movements like a golf swing or a serve in tennis


This is when the tendons of your rotator cuff are no longer able to repair themselves properly, causing pain in and around them. It’s usually because of wear and tear of your rotator cuff over time and repeated specific sporting movements like a golf swing or a serve in tennis.

Have you got a Rotator Cuff Injury

Common symptoms are degrees of pain with certain movements from a dull ache to severe, overhead movements tend to be difficult, and the pain is usually worse at night especially if you try to sleep on the injured shoulder.

A loss of physical power in the shoulder along with compensation  movements to aid the injury. This is highlighted in sporting movements as you can only adapt a small amount before performance drops. In everyday movements you start to use other arms and elbows more and not do certain tasks. You may also have excessive clicking in the shoulder.

How can InterX Treatment help?

Standard treatment is medication for pain, rest, physiotherapy, steroid Injection, surgery, physiotherapy and if problem linked to sport stop playing.

Stephen at InterX Pain Clinic takes a different approach. Firstly after movement analysis and any links to sporting or work movements specific rehabilitation movements are undertaken. The InterX Treatment will reduce pain and inflammation and the mobility work will help restore movement.

One of the challenges of this type of injury is its complexity and deep tissue. As a result the larger muscles of the shoulder contract and over fire to protect the joint and stop it moving. The InterX treatment can relax these muscles and allow for increased movement resulting in aiding the recovery of the smaller muscles, ligaments and tendons of the rotator cuff. A course of treatment will be required and a staged recovery for sporting movement is needed but great success in treating this injury!

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