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Old 05-28-2009, 11:06 PM   #15
Linda Eskin
Linda Eskin's Avatar
Dojo: Aikido of San Diego, San Diego, California
Location: San Diego County, California
Join Date: May 2009
Posts: 335
Re: Knees & Shoulder Pain

I'll second everyone who suggested working with a good PT.

My shoulders are messed up by heredity, and had caused me trouble off and on for years, usually one at a time. A few years back I managed to get them both out of whack at the same time, which really got my attention (even feeding myself was difficult, and eating is kind of a high priority for me).

About that same time my dad tripped and fell, and badly tore both his rotator cuffs trying to catch himself. Apparently they'd been weakened by years of bone spurs grinding away at other important shoulder bits. His doc mentioned the problem being hereditary, and suggested I come in. Yep, same thing.

We were able to get the left one in good working order through PT. The right shoulder required minor surgery to remove the bone spurs, and then lots of PT. I bought a home gym (Zuma model from Pacific Fitness) that lets me continue doing those exercises regularly on my own. The old shoulder problems have not recurred since my PT & surgery.

(Of course, in my 4th-ever Aikido class 2 weeks ago I did one of those "how not to do it" things, and landed hard on that right shoulder. So I've been observing classes (very valuable, by the way), and am back under the care of the guy who did the shoulder surgery. Anyway... That's a new injury, and beside the point.)

The point is that I had shoulder problems, and was able to resolve the issue with the help of an excellent PT, minor surgery on one, and ongoing exercise. Had I ignored the problem, and tried to "tough it out," my shoulders would've continue to become weaker and more fragile, and I could've eventually ended up with the kind of major problem my dad ran into. So I highly recommend addressing the problem, even if you're kind of getting along OK, to avoid future trouble.

Incidentally, I learned that I react badly to NSAIDs like Motrin and Aleve. I get edema in my legs, including ruptured capillaries, pain, and possibly nerve damage. I (and several doctors) never guessed that an anti-inflammatory could cause swelling... Go figure. Not everyone has that problem with them, of course, but don't take that stuff lightly.

If rest is called for, go to class and watch.It's very worthwhile. Good luck!


Linda Eskin - Facebook | My Aikido blog: Grab My Wrist

"Heaven is right where you are standing, and that is the place to train." - Morihei Ueshiba
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