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August 20, 2013


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Thanks Kathryn. I had a frozen shoulder many years ago and as you say it got better within two years. I was offered manipulation under anaesthetic but decided against. In recent years I have developed a more permanent shoulder problem which I am told shows signs of wear and tear. The advice given was to build up the muscles using rubber bands. I also find a big improvement when I don't eat wheat and gluten.I am still able to play tennis but find I have a dull ache in my upper arm afterwards. The worst thing is carrying heavy shopping and even sometimes walking letting my arms hang down causes the dull ache

Kathryn Merrow--The Pain Relief Coach

Dear Janet,

You are very welcome. Here are some thoughts: You may know I am a huge proponent of massage therapy so, yes, strengthen your whole shoulder, however, you may find that massage for the specific muscles involved in your tennis game may make a world of difference. I'm not talking about a lovely relaxation massage but about massage that is specifically for pain provided by a well-trained therapist.

We all have 'wear and tear' but we do not all have pain. That is a convenient excuse which may show up on x-rays but isn't necessarily the cause of our pain. The cause is more often muscles.

Many times a pain seems to be permanent but turns out to be temporary when the appropriate muscles are treated with manual/massage/hands-on therapy.

Since you know what causes your ache, please don't do it. :) If you can carry your bags like a football in the crook of your arm, it causes less weight on the shoulder.

Is part of your strengthening program to hike your shoulders and strengthen the muscles on the 'tops' of your shoulders? I suspect that may help (long-distance suspicion.)

I'm glad your frozen shoulder resolved itself naturally. The shoulder is a kind of sloppy joint and sometimes the bones and joint are actually the cause of pain or dysfunction but more often, it's muscles. :)



I think you are absolutely right Kathryn. When I was younger I could move the ball and socket joint in and out - just a little way. Some years ago when I was playing squash - I did an overhead smash and unbeknown to me my joint had just dislodged slightly. The pain was excruciating. My frozen shoulder seemed to appear shortly after that.

Most of the time I have full use of my joint I can do any moves with no problem then the tiniest little move can make me jump and it feels as though it has just dislodged a little and that is where the pain is coming from - it is almost like a weakness sensation. Building up the muscles would seem to be a sensible place for me to start.

I do try to carry my shopping as you suggested and even just bending my arm a little seems to help - but again my muscles are quite weak!!!

Kathryn Merrow--The Pain Relief Coach

Hi Janet,

There is something called a trigger point. These develop in muscles that are unhappy (i.e., when overstretched.) A trigger point can cause weakness as well as pain (the pain is often at a distance, sometimes a great distance.)

If you notice the weakness in the one shoulder only, it could be a trigger point(s) in a muscle. If you notice the weakness in BOTH shoulders, strengthening them will help. :)

By the way, I used to have a 'sloppy' shoulder joint, perhaps from some childhood injury, but years of doing massage have built up the muscles around that joint and it stopped slipping out of place years ago.


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  • "G'Day Kathy, Thank you very much for ALL your helpful info. My symptoms have improved 10000000% with back exercises and your input. I have found a very intelligent lady (here) who understands the importance of muscle and massage and exercise to stimulate the brain. Have sufferd for decades and was getting worse. I owe much to YOU and her. Cheers, - Garry Allen, Australia - PS I used to play drums in my own band. Guess what I am again doing - after 30 years. Thank you again Kathy.
  • "Thank you SOOOOO much! I felt better after just one night of following your advice, and after the second night almost normal!" - Lori S., Weston OH
  • "Hi Kathryn, I recently developed carpal tunnel in my right hand (9 months since I started noticing signif. tingling; now it is painful). The doctors have offered little more than suggesting braces and anti-inflammatory and what I find on the internet is all over the place and often extremely depressing. Your "page" is so encouraging. I have been searching for some ways to manage and reduce the causes, and so I'll be following the advice here. Mostly, I am relieved to have a source of information now that is helpful and positive. So thank you!" - Caroline Brown, by email
  • "My carpal tunnel is almost all gone. The best help I 'think', was my posture, next was self massage and stretching. I rarely wear my brace anymore. Learning that all these muscles work together has made me realize that the supposedely Carpal Tunnel was just a symtom of something else going on." - Beverly C., by email
  • "Thank you so much for your information, it is something I have never heard before. I am thrilled to try out these techniques and do think that the scalene issue might be the key for I constantly have pain between my shoulder blades, have big knots along the spine exactly where you say and do hold my head forward. You may have hit the nail on the head."--Riannen Schlosser, Lodi CA (concerned about carpal tunnel pain)
  • "Thank you for the link - I did do the muscle assessment and it is definitely helping. I will continue to do what's in this report and hopefully will avoid surgery. I'm very happy with the results so far."--Rose Curran, Austin TX
  • "I don't remember a lot of the stuff in the wrist pain booklet, but I remember the part about sleeping on your back to keep your chest open, and I do that. And my wrists do hurt less!"--Kay Heil, New Boston MI
  • "My wife, Dave and I are all sitting up straighter and doing some of your exercises. It is always a pleasure to work with someone that really knows about what they are doing, makes my job easier. Thanks."--PJ Caporuscio, ABC Radio & TV Productions
  • "Thank you again, that is also very helpful. Little by little, I am conquering the knot! : ) "--Katey Cooper, ProVision Creative Web & Print Design
  • "Really like your content, for purely selfish reasons. I've lived with chronic shoulder pain from migraines. Tried lots of things and your simple suggestions had an excellent response in my body. I look forward to reading and learning more!"--Patrice Dunckley

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