Jen from Arizona contacted us because she hurt her shoulder on a lat machine. Here’s a link for some shoulder strain stretches to ease the pain in case any of you are experiencing something similar. At the first sign of pain stop and do the stretches. If the pain persists, ice is very helpful. An anti-inflammatory like ibuprofen is good if you are medically cleared to do so.
The fact that she was hurting on the right side tells me she wasn’t pulling equally from both sides. When using the lat machine, make sure your hands are evenly spaced from the middle of the bar. Jen also told me she was doing 3 sets of 15 front and back which means she was doing 3 sets of 30. The pain could be an indicator that she was overdoing it.
The game plan to ward off muscular pain is to stretch, massage the area and then when you feel healed, make sure your next work out is manageable. You should wait until 2 days have passed then try a light version of the same exercise to get the muscles to function properly. If you need to work around it because of the pain try doing a seated row, it is similar but may allow movement.
This type of injury is called a trigger point and is very common in people who exercise. Trigger points are a bunch of muscle fibers that are in a “micro cramp” and cause tremendous pain, they can last for months but can respond to massage and several other treatments. Unfortunately, each trigger point is different and needs to be treated in different ways sometimes heat is good, ice massage is useful, ultrasound and sometimes they can mimic other injuries like a slipped disc. If you are unsure contact us and we can help you figure it out, that’s what we do.
Fitness does not happen in one workout. This is a marathon, not a sprint, and the real winners are the ones who are consistent.