What is supraspinatus tendinopathy?

The supraspinatus tendinopathy, also known as impingement or subacromial syndrome, is a lesion that affects the tendon itself due to an inflammatory process or degenerative process.

This type of pathology within the world of triathletes, is very typical in swimming especially in the crawl mode. It is the most used style due to the great speed that allows us to reach in the competitions, but at the same time the one that more effort and tension creates us in the articulation of the shoulder and in all the adjacent musculature, especially the zone of the sleeves of the rotators (supraspinatus, infraspinatus, subscapularis and minor round).

It also usually occurs but much less frequently during cycling: the position on the bike and the maintained tension of the musculature of the anterior chain, especially pectoralis minor and major, provoke a slight antepulsion, facilitating the appearance of any tendinopathy associated with the supraspinatus.

Normally, this pathology represents one of the main Causes of pain in the anterior and lateral aspect of the shoulder, which can sometimes be accompanied by limitation to movement, especially the first degrees of shoulder abduction, inflammation and night pain.  

The supraspinatus muscle runs from the top of the spine of the scapula to the greater tuberosity of the humerus, passing under the acromion. It presents the characteristic, that in the subacromial zone, the space is very reduced, reason why any inflammation or previous irritation of the supraspinatus, can lead to more chronic tendinopathies and worse recovery, even partial or total muscle breakage (1 image).

What is its possible origin?

We cannot speak of a single origin in the appearance of this pathology, but of the sum of different factors that trigger said injury: repetitive arm lifting exercises, poor technique during sports practice (especially in swimming), biomechanical alterations, processes degenerative, muscular imbalances etc.

How do we treat it?

From Healthing, we recommend that when you begin to notice discomfort in the shoulder with a clinic similar to the one described above, immediately finish the sports activitya to avoid an increase in the injury. Once the supraspinatus tendinopathy is confirmed, the main objective will be eliminate pain and inflammation in those cases where it exists, through different manual therapy and osteopathy techniquesTogether with tools like EPI, high frequency laser, diathermy y shock waves for more severe processes.

When inflammation and pain subside we must restore the functional movement patterns of the shoulder pain-free, working the movements of abduction and elevation of the shoulder, while enhancing the rest of the muscles that make up the rotator cuff. This last phase we usually work with Redcord-Neurac, with which we get very satisfactory results (Imagen2).

  Supraspinatus rupture rehabilitation

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