Formally known as the "Rotator Cuff", these four muscles can be the culprit of several upper body aches and pains if not properly managed. The subscapularis, supraspinatus, infraspinatus, and teres minor all attach to the head of the humerus - as shown in the picture above. These four muscles work individually and together to connect your humerus to your scapula to the rest of your body.
While there are many muscles that attach to the humerus, the shoulder is the least supported joint in the body. Take a minute and think about how often you use your arm throughout the day. Yep, that's right. You use them all day long! This makes the shoulder joint and connecting muscles, tendons, and ligaments much more susceptible to repetitive stress injuries, tendinitis, bursitis, and muscle tears. Especially in those who participate in overhead and repetitive motion sports such as swimming, baseball, tennis, and weight lifting. The repetitive motions and extra weight overhead put a lot of strain on these rather small muscles.
Massage therapy is a great integration into any healthcare routine, even more so when athletic activities are involved. Muscle specific techniques can help the muscle fibers repair themselves when injury does occur. Broadening and lengthening strokes can assist in easing muscle tension. Self-care is imperative in keeping the body in top functioning condition!