15 Feb Frozen Shoulder
What is it?
Frozen shoulder is a condition that leads to pain and stiffness of the shoulder. It is also known as adhesive capsulitis or shoulder contracture. The symptoms tend to gradually get worse over a number of months or years. You will typically experience shoulder pain for the first two to nine months, which can be severe, followed by increasing stiffness.
The stiffness may affect your ability to carry out everyday activities and, in particularly severe cases, you may not be able to move your shoulder at all.
Frozen shoulder occurs when the sleeve that surrounds the shoulder joint, known as the capsule, becomes swollen and thickened. It's unclear why this happens. In frozen shoulder, bands of scar tissue form inside the shoulder capsule, causing it to thicken, swell and tighten. This means there is less space for your upper arm bone in the joint, which limits movements. (NHS.uk)
How can Pilates help?
If you have a frozen shoulder, it's important to keep your shoulder joint mobile with regular, gentle stretching exercises. Not using your shoulder could make the stiffness worse, so you should continue to use it as normal.
Pilates exercises will focus on strengthening the muscles that provide support to the shoulder joint and maintaining/increasing the range of movement in your pain free zone. Specific exercises will include arm movements in a number of different position and working from a four point kneeling position to strengthen around the shoulder. Pilates allows you to work in a functional way ensuring the exercises help you in everyday activities as well as providing benefits to your whole body.
Always ensure that you are working with an experienced and qualified Pilates teacher and seek advice from your health professional before embarking upon any exercise.
Other sources of information