Rotator Cuff Syndrome

2008, 2014

Sort yourself out today…Shoulder pain

By |August 20th, 2014|media|Comments Off on Sort yourself out today…Shoulder pain

Back and shoulder pain is a common complaint due to our sedentary lifestyles and bad posture. Nearly 50% of us will suffer at some point in our lives -our experts are here to help you avoid it.

The Osteopath

Dr Guy Ashburner is a Cape Town-based osteopath

Painful shoulder conditions that limit movement are common, and are caused by injuries affecting the muscles, tendons, ligaments and cartilage. As the shoulder has a high degree of flexibility, it’s less stable and more prone to injuries than other joints. As the nerves that supply the shoulder and arm originate from the neck and upper spine, conditions such as spinal dysfunction commonly contribute to pain in the shoulder. To determine the cause of your pain, the osteopath will conduct a full orthopedic and neurological examination of the shoulder, neck and upper back. When a diagnosis has been reached, the osteopath will discuss the treatment options with you. Although shoulder pain can be serious, the vast majority of injuries are not serious and can easily be helped.

The Physiotherapist

Kerryn Alcock runs a practice in Linden, Joburg

The shoulder is made up of three bones: the clavicle (collarbone), the scapula (shoulder blade) and the humerus (upper arm bone). Shoulder pain is often related to occupation or sport, overuse or ‘wear and tear’ also results in a painful shoulder and this can come with age. To ensure a good prognosis, early treatment is essential in order to prevent stiffness, over-stretching of ligaments or tendons, weakness and further injury. Simple exercises can be done at home such as pendular exercises done while lying on your stomach with your arm off the bed or while standing, bending over slightly or leaning on a chair. Relax your arm and […]

2907, 2014

Lat pulldowns- Proper technique and how to avoid Injury.

By |July 29th, 2014|media|Comments Off on Lat pulldowns- Proper technique and how to avoid Injury.

Lat pulldowns are a popular gym exercise for strengthening the upper back, shoulders, biceps and forearms and is without a doubt the most frequently misused piece of equipment in the gym.
This week I saw a prime example of what not to do with Lat pulldowns.  An over enthusiastic man in his late thirties holding the bar with an extra wide grip yanking the bar down quickly behind his head which forced his neck forward and bent his whole spine into a unnatural bent forward position.
Here is some guidance on how to avoid making mistakes which may result in injury and help you achieve your fitness goals.
Exercisers should grasp the bar with palms facing away from you (pronated) and with a grip at or about shoulder width apart or where comfortable with the hands evenly spaced on the bar. If you are experiencing rotator cuff issues (a group of four muscles that provide shoulder stability) or shoulder pain, switch the handle attachment so your palms face each other giving you better leverage and an even closer grip which can sometimes alleviate the shoulder strain. Lat pulldown bars are long with curve at each end giving people incorrect notions about how far apart their hands should be.  Gripping the bar wider compromises the ability of the body to work as a unit and increases the potential for shoulder injuries.
Exercisers should lean back slightly and pull the bar to the upper chest or sternum. This will allow the head to be moved away from the cable and bar and reduce the need to turn the head to the side especially with heavy resistances and help reduce neck strain and injury. Leaning back slightly will also ensure that the […]

3010, 2013


By |October 30th, 2013|media|Comments Off on Kettlebells

Kettlebells, cast-iron weights that look like cannonballs with handles, have grown in popularity, and many gyms, trainers and coaches have jumped on the kettlebell bandwagon. A popular kettlebell exercise is the single-arm swing. A combination of a squat and an arm swing, it is one of the trickiest kettlebell exercises to do correctly. Common sense suggests that swinging the kettlebell back and whipping it straight overhead in one clean movement is a recipe for injury. Kettlebell instruction methodology suggests that concern for safety may be understood, yet explosive movements with weights, which increase that risk greatly, are still endorsed.

The kettlebell swing shouldn’t be performed until the barbell deadlift is mastered. The barbell deadlift not to be confused with the stiff legged deadlift, is essential for the safety and integrity of the lower back, and indeed your whole spine, when lifting any weight. Ironically, I rarely see this fundamentally important movement performed correctly in the gym.

Explosive/ballistic lifting kettlebell exercises should be treated with extreme caution, and are not suitable for the beginner at exercise, or those returning to exercise after inactivity. Using kettlebells correctly and safely requires a high level of technical skill and proper instruction. Only those who are professional athletes, or who have a few years of weight-training experience with free weights and have trained their muscles to withstand repeated shock of a ballistic nature, should even consider using them.

Always question why you are doing a particular exercise (even if you are with a personal trainer or biokineticist) and determine its risk vs its benefit. Rather be safe than sorry. If you have a pre-existing neck, shoulder, back or postural issue, arthritis or a hernia, kettlebells are NOT for you. It’s also a potential […]

905, 2012

Do alternative medical therapies work?

By |May 9th, 2012|media|Comments Off on Do alternative medical therapies work?

Do alternative medical therapies work?

In pain? If conventional methods fail, visit an osteopath. The Women24 team gives the treatment a ‘thumbs up’. Do you?

In search of answers, I visited Dr Guy Ashburner, an osteopath. (On behalf of the osteopathic profession) […]

309, 2010

Taking Back Control

By |September 3rd, 2010|media|Comments Off on Taking Back Control

Taking Back Control. Having survived a near-death experience, Anansa Steyn found herself once more challenged by her own body. We help her get back on the road to recovery.

“It was a seemingly innocuous fall that changed Anansa Steyn’s life four years ago. She had been on holiday in Mossel Bay, enjoying sun-drenched days and relaxing summer nights. […]

311, 2009

Tennis Elbow

By |November 3rd, 2009|common complaints, media|Comments Off on Tennis Elbow

Do You Have Tennis Elbow?

It’s sensible to go and see your doctor if you have elbow pain that doesn’t resolve within a day or two, as other more serious conditions have very similar symptoms. These are the main symptoms of tennis elbow: […]