Shoulder Surgery Tomorrow!!!

Discussion in 'Health & Fitness' started by Pacific lefty, Apr 26, 2012.

  1. Pacific lefty

    Pacific lefty Rookie

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    2.5 weeks 1st PT

    So, 2.5 weeks on and movement in my left arm getting better. I can drive more easily and help a good bit with my left arm when cooking and putting on clothes.

    I started PT and the first thing I noticed was that the muscles behind my shoulder were really sore. I think the pulley exercises I was doing caused that, since I hadn't used these muscles in a while. She did some rubbing out of trigger points in that area and around my arm and also used the electrical "tingling" machine on shoulder and ultrasound for the muscles, but not in the operated area. She said we would do some "dry needling" of the area next week to promote oxygen flow and healing.

    I got several of the "cane" exercises to do at home twice a day, with the pulley, and passive stretching of arm overhead while on the floor. I have a week to work on them before next PT appt.

    After that, when I got up to go, I felt exhausted. I guess you are supposed to feel that way afterwards.
     
    #51
  2. Say Chi Sin Lo

    Say Chi Sin Lo Legend

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    Ah that stupid cane, I hated that phase.
     
    #52
  3. Pacific lefty

    Pacific lefty Rookie

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    Yes, I am hoping to be rid of it soon! I have one brokenbroom handle and I had to wash it as I used it to kill spiders in the past...Hoping it won't be too long till I can start strengthening...
     
    #53
  4. FastFreddy

    FastFreddy Semi-Pro

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    Shoulder surgery

    I take it u r lefty, was this your first shoulder surgery? I just had my 4th surgery 3 months ago and looks like I might need a third one on my right shoulder. I had 2 on each so far since 1996. Two were open style and the last two were scope jobs. Good luck with your pt rehab.
     
    #54
  5. Pacific lefty

    Pacific lefty Rookie

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    Hey FastFreddy,
    Yes, I am a lefty, although luckily a month before the surgery I learned to hit and serve right handed. Its my first surgery (I hope first and last), and from today's perspective, I'm really happy I had it done. Getting back good ROM already and hope to start strengthening soon.

    I was really apprehensive about it initially as I live in Ireland, and not a lot of people play tennis here, nor do the ortho surgeons treat many w tennis injuries.

    Wow, I can't believe you have had so many surgeries, is that all from tennis?
     
    #55
  6. FastFreddy

    FastFreddy Semi-Pro

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    surgery

    Left shoulder ripped 2cm by 3cm and had bones spurs from 2 years playing 3hrs 4 days a week of clay court tennis playing my friend who played # 5 for Duke. Right shoulder I torn the tendon off the bone 4cm by 6cm the bone plus two bone spurs playing in JR A ice hockey. So now I just lift weights and run marathons and take spin classes to keep fit and lean.
     
    #56
  7. Pacific lefty

    Pacific lefty Rookie

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    Hey FastFreddy, do you play any tennis now? Tell me, after your surgery, how long did you need to wait before you started running? When I couldn't play tennis, I took up short distance running but just before surgery it really aggravated my shoulder. When I asked my surgeon about running he said "you'll know" (when the time is right)???
     
    #57
  8. FastFreddy

    FastFreddy Semi-Pro

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    Run

    I hit here and there with my family nothing serious. I was playing tennis the next day and cycling on my spin bike since Iam lefty and my first surgery was on my right shoulder. Just slice backhands no 2 handers or serves since I need one arm to toss. It's a little weird not use your other hand to prep on your swing. I serve righty and lefty. I did cycling after my surgery since I train on a treadmill and I was more into cycling at the time and did not want to fall on it also. Once the tendon is healed 7 months you can run with no worries. 8 months after surgery I won 3 tennis touraments.

    After my 2nd surgery I won a 5.5 tennis league only 7 months out. I have my 13th marathon coming up in Jan 2013 that what Iam training for. I have not played serious tennis after my 2nd surgery Jan 1999. I played my best after my 1st surgery dec 1996 on my right shoulder. Once I had my left shoulder done in April 1999 it messed up my toss on my serve and messed up my forehand loop. I took off my sling right away since it made my shoulder and arm stiff. As long as u don't lift it u will be fine without a sling. The traction of the weight of your arm will help relax your shoulder. Talk to your doc when he wants u to remove it. Most doc tell u to wear it so u don't use your arm and rip the tendon. Ask your doc if it's ok for u to run as long as u don't trip and fall on your shoulder I don't see any reason why not?

    PS: how old r u?
     
    #58
  9. Say Chi Sin Lo

    Say Chi Sin Lo Legend

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    The thing about running is, the natural up/down rocking motion of your arms is actually quite a pounding on the shoulders. I was strongly advised to not run until I had full ROM, and at least 25% of my strength back.

    My "you'll know" moment came when I was able to brush my teeth as ferociously as before the surgery.
     
    #59
  10. Pacific lefty

    Pacific lefty Rookie

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    Running

    I'm 44, and very fit. I never had any sports injury till this shoulder problem came up in Oct 2010. I played tennis 3-5 times a week, did some running and yogaand generally had a healthy lifestyle till the problem arose.

    Technically, I suppose it should heal quickly as luckily I had no tear at all so I am totally free of the sling and doing plenty of ROM exercises. I am impatient to get my arm up higher (it would certainly help for hair drying etc) but I guess that will come in time.

    I am used to being really active and I think I could do stationary cycling, but I prefer running. I don't think I'd manage right handed tennis even yet as I found I really needed my left arm for balance and good form on groundstrokes.

    Say Chi - I will have to try the toothbrush test. I did a bit of the pot stirring while making chocolate sauce this evening and that felt fine...
     
    #60
  11. FastFreddy

    FastFreddy Semi-Pro

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    doc

    Well that's your answer whatever your Doc tells u to do. Like I said I was riding my spin bike and was not into running at the time but I was on the court the next day after sugery hitting balls with my one good arm at the time. My doc never said anything about not running and said it was fine to play just don't fall on the newly fixed shoulder. How long ago did you have surgery and are u still wearing your sling. Just do your pt I would do mine 3 times a day then go to pt 3 x a week for 5 weeks then 2 x a week for 5 weeks then 1x a week for 5 weeks. I was healed by the 1oth week as far as pt goes then waited 7 months for the tendon to heal. Over the next year I slowly gained my strength back.
     
    #61
  12. Say Chi Sin Lo

    Say Chi Sin Lo Legend

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    You have to brush like it's the last time you'll ever brush your teeth before you can start running.
     
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  13. FastFreddy

    FastFreddy Semi-Pro

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    Shoulder

    Never heard of that one, the cuff test I know is washing your hair without pain and full rom. The key is to do the right amount of pt not too much and hard not to little and baby it and do it at the right time. Don't skip and try to make up and jam it in. I did my own pt the last two times and saved 1000.00
     
    #63
  14. Say Chi Sin Lo

    Say Chi Sin Lo Legend

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    If anyone is reading this, just want to note that I am not a medical professional. This is just personal experience and it worked for me.

    I didn't go with the shampoo test because it demonstrates ROM, but it doesn't really demonstrate strength. And I think a surgically repaired shoulder needs to be considerably strong enough to withstand the pounding/rocking motion of the arms while running.
     
    #64
  15. Pacific lefty

    Pacific lefty Rookie

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    FastFreddy and Say Chi, very useful to know about your experiences, there is an advantage to talking to people who have had shoulder surgery before, as my surgeon sees mostly people who are not primarily sports injuries.

    As per different tests, I think the hardest thing is to draw the line when doing PT as to when to avoid stressing the joint but at the same time to keep it challenging in order to make progress.

    Like this morning, I could brush my teeth with my head bent a bit down, but not vigorously, the whole time. Likewise, I still can't do my hair properly, which is just about as bad as not being able to play tennis!!!

    I am mostly doing my own PT as my therapist wants to see me once a week and have me do the exercises for the remainder of the time. As well I am surprised to hear people on the post in USA who have paid a lot for MRI and surgery. I have private insurance here which isn't very expensive and have only paid for three ortho visits.
     
    #65
  16. Say Chi Sin Lo

    Say Chi Sin Lo Legend

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    You know that feeling when you're at the gym, and you're lifting weights, towards the end of a set, you can feel your muscle burning, but you think you can do one more repetition. It's going to burn, but you KNOW you've got that last repetition in you.

    That's how I think you should challenge yourself throughout rehab. Also, note the difference between: "Ohhhh that's going to burn!" vs. "Oh no no, that's going to hurt."
     
    #66
  17. FastFreddy

    FastFreddy Semi-Pro

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    pt

    My advice is to do your pt as they tell u to do. Funny thing is most people I talked to where I did my pt was mostly workmens comp. I did not see anyone improve why it's because they only do their pt while they are there. Even when u go 3 times a week it's really just to check on your progress and to adjust it. All the people where like u walked in with a sling and 8 weeks later u are throwing a ball. I told them it's easy do your pt 3 times a day and follow the directions. Started with some stretches and finger walks at pt I had electric stim and ultrasound and plenty of ice there and at home. I took zero pain meds for all 4 surgeies. I loved it when 2 of them would pullon my arm and a third person holds me on the table. Also since my friend worked there I paided for 45 mins and stayed 90 mins everytime plus my pt girl so hot. I took a long lunch since I was a manager.
     
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  18. Pacific lefty

    Pacific lefty Rookie

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    FastFreddy sounds like it worked out well. My current PT said that most non-sports injury patients have no concept of doing exercises at home. Even when I am not in PT I would always be stretching out and doing exercise. So funny about your PT, well I had to change mine for fear of getting a crush on my previous one...
     
    #68
  19. FastFreddy

    FastFreddy Semi-Pro

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    PT

    I liked my PT since she was in the same bulding as my Doc and the surgery center was across the street one stop shopping and 5 min walk from my job.
    All these workman comp people do the same thing first they get a bunch of cortisone shots which only mask pain and are bad for the tendon. Next some PT which does not work when u have a whole hole in your tendon. Next they get the surgery and don't move their arm thur a full rom get frozen shoulder.
    After they do their pt half *** and blame the doctor or the pt person when 99 percent of the time it's their fault it just cracked me up.
     
    #69
  20. Pacific lefty

    Pacific lefty Rookie

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    Day 25-Where have my arm muscles gone????

    So happily I am getting better and better movement in my arm. I can do the passive exercises and get my arm up over my head, but definitely not actively, whereas actively I can get my arm up to shoulder level (which is a tiny bit sore...).

    I am kind of wondering if my PT is going to give me strength building work on Friday. I hope so. I really think I have lost the muscle tone completely in my left arm! Before the surgery I did light weight exercises for biceps and triceps and the forearm ones from thrower's ten. I think I'm going to have to start all over again, because when I look at my upper arm, its definitely weaker looking and thinner than my right arm!!! And after doing all the stretches, I can feel the back of my arm and the front, biceps area really sore!
     
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  21. charliefedererer

    charliefedererer Legend

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    Glad to hear you are making progress!
     
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  22. Pacific lefty

    Pacific lefty Rookie

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    Thanks Charlie, passive motion good now, but a bit frustrated that I have no active above 90 degrees...
     
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  23. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Hi PacL....
    Don't worry about atrophy.
    I mentioned I was in a leg cast for 13 months. My leg, when it came out of the final cast, was much much thinner than either of my arms, looking like a 4 year veteran of a concentration camp. I could put no weight on it my 3rd day. Still crutched it to the surf 3 blocks away, and rode 2 really heavy waves, 6' and smack barrelling. Even if you get tons weaker, once you have the skill, you can at least do the sport at some level.
    Of course, you have to apply common sense and hold yourself back at least 50%.
     
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  24. Pacific lefty

    Pacific lefty Rookie

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    Wow, LeeD amazing. You are absolutely right to keep going. Good point, at least I can get back to tennis at some level. I am just waiting for the green light from PT who I am seeing tomorrow. Doubt she will say ok till I can get the arm up a bit more but I reckon I could play right handed for a small while soon.

    I read the story about the girl who was paralysed from the waist down finishing the London marathon in the robotic walking suit and thought that was just incredible. Really, I can't (shouldn't) complain!
     
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  25. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Hi PacL...
    So for maybe 1.5 years, you'll learn to hit a two handed groundie, both sides, adopt a slower, flatter serve, and become more an all around player than just big serves to set up points.
    Think of it as a learning to play experience, where your serve is taken away, and you have to hit two handed groundstrokes and volleys.
    Well, GeneMayer did it, was No.4 in the world in doubles. FrewMcMillian used all 2 handed strokes except serves, was No. ONE doubles in the world.
    We just gotta make, when given lemons, make LEMONADE!
     
    #75
  26. charliefedererer

    charliefedererer Legend

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    Great attitude!

    (Is it easier to make lemonade in sunny San Diego?)

    [​IMG]


    [​IMG] Lemon Heaven - Lemonade - San Diego, California
     
    #76
  27. Pacific lefty

    Pacific lefty Rookie

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    We could use some lemonade in Ireland this week finally that the temperature has risen above 65!

    On another light note, my PT is really happy with my progress so I get to start light strengthening exercises. Even though they are light they are tough, it seems like at the start the new exercises are impossible, then by the end of the week, I can do them.

    A good reminder though not to jump back on the court... I thought my arm felt really good today, then somebody poked me in the side to tickle me and I made one sharp movement...pain! I hope that goes away as tennis is made up of sharp movements!
     
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  28. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    As they say, "time heals all wounds"...
    Of course, they meant ..of the heart.
    But physically, it sorta applies, although you never heal to where you were before the injury.
    I love all the guys who critique the vid of my serves, and they ignore the 4 left shoulder separations, 2 left collarbone breaks, 2 tib/fib compound breaks with full metal hardware, a noticeable sprained ankle as I was hobbling around, and a twisted knee which is harder to spot.
    Give yourself some time.
     
    #78
  29. Say Chi Sin Lo

    Say Chi Sin Lo Legend

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    Get used to that until you've regain ~100% flexibility and ~100% ROM. The pain is largely nothing, but to like you said, a steep reminder to not do that again.
     
    #79
  30. Pacific lefty

    Pacific lefty Rookie

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    Week 5 nearly complete!
    Small jog on beach- bad idea!
    Arm going up a bit higher...
    Next appt with PT next Thursday. I wonder will she let me hit a few balls to test shoulder?
     
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  31. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Hi PacL...
    Jog while holding your injured side elbow with your good side, that's the only way. A sling does nothing except jolt your shoulder more.
    I tried jogging in several of my shoulder separates.
     
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  32. Pacific lefty

    Pacific lefty Rookie

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    Hey LeeD, the sling is definitely ancient history now. My PT said that I should be able to move my arm loosely held out from my body while I was jogging. That didn't really work. I may wait another week and try again w your suggestion next week.

    Just checking ROM for my 6 week appt. and to my horror I realized I can't put my hand behind my back at all...I never even thought of testing that (neither did my PT). Is that because its too early to do that, or do I need to start stretching it out???
     
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  33. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Hi PacL....
    You're pushing the PT hard, kinda too hard.
    Jogging. Hold your left elbow with your right hand. Yes, it works.
     
    #83
  34. Fee

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    Ah, the 'bra test' for women. This was the moment of breakthrough for my frozen left shoulder. I did it one day without thinking about it and my PT was done within a month after that. Now, I can't reach behind me at all with my right arm, I can barely put my hand on my waist comfortably.

    PL, keep doing what your PT says. I've only skimmed this thread (and I need to re-read the whole thing because I might be having surgery) but it seems you are progressing along fairly well.
     
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  35. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Bra test?
    Before you get there, you gotta brush your teeth, get your left hand onto the keyboard, and lift your left arm to allow your armpit to breathe.
    If you pass the bra test, you're ready for Cirque de Solei
     
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  36. Pacific lefty

    Pacific lefty Rookie

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    Hi LeeD, you are right, I am taking it easy and only doing what the PT said today. It is hard not to push it too much. Patience is hard to come by! Good things today were, I could get clothes on really well over my head, can just about wash my hair properly with both hands and I can lift my arm up about 75 degrees now!

    Fee, I definitely can't reach behind at all but I guess that will come back after everything else. I hadn't even tried that one till yesterday when I couldn't do the towel stretch that I had seen in a shoulder rehab book I have. Is your shoulder problem new? Separate from the frozen shoulder you had before?
     
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  37. Pacific lefty

    Pacific lefty Rookie

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    Do I have to juggle plates on sticks or things like that in Cirque de Soleil? Ha ha,I'd rather just hit a tennis ball!
     
    #87
  38. Fee

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    I had frozen shoulder on the left. As bad as that was, it was better than the issue that I've been having with my right shoulder for almost a year now. I was diagnosed with bicep tendonitis, but it seems to have worsened into something else now and surgery is being talked about. I don't want it. I'm seeing my chiro on Monday, then I'm supposed to call my ortho for a follow up appointment. My PT had to boot me out after 10 visits and refer me back. He is honestly a bit stumped about the pain I'm having. I should read this thread and your experiences before I say much more. :)
     
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  39. Pacific lefty

    Pacific lefty Rookie

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    Having had the surgery, and starting to really get pain free movement back, I am glad I had it, but would definitely have tried to avoid it if I could have. I really had a chronic problem that went from just tennis to affecting my daily life in a big way. This was made worse by playing through the pain.

    If somebody hadn't tried all the options I would definitely say to try them first. Surgery, even a small one like the SAD/acromioplasty, requires a lot of committment to rehab and patience above all (whichI am sometimes a little short of).

    Since you had a shoulder issue before I think you are probably pretty well in tune with what should work for you. I think the root of my original problem was my serving mechanics, just about every coach and teaching video points out the danger of allowing impingement to happen, which I hadn't really realised at the time.

    My old PT, the rugby football charmer, kicked me out too after about 8 sessions when nothing he tried worked!

    Good luck with your next appointments, hope it goes well.
     
    #89
  40. Pacific lefty

    Pacific lefty Rookie

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    Week 6.5 Internal Rotation Help!!!

    Sooo, I am at week 6.5 now and doing a mixture of resistance bands and light stretching. A few light weights. Still finding it really really difficult to get my hand behind my back. Before the surgery I could put both hands behind and up very high.

    My PT and I only realized this last week, so she has given me two pages of exercises to do. I find that after doing them, when I get to the end, I can get my hand back a little, but any other time during the day, without doing them it is impossible. When I try, I end up arching my back to reach and it is impossible to do it with proper posture. Did I wait too long to address "internal rotation" while I was busy regaining flexion, etc? Does this mean I will be permanently stiff?:confused:

    Those of you who have been there, will this come back in time? Do I need to just work the exercises non stop till I get it? I mean since this is a part of natural ROM and therefore a prerequisite to return to play, I have to get there.
     
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  41. Fee

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    PacL, can you stand up straight and comfortably put both hands on your waist? That was a good measuring point for me. Then from there I try to slowly slide my hand back and figure out where the pain/resistance is (on my right side current injury).

    When I had my frozen left shoulder, this was one of the last places I got back. I worked the pulleys/wall stretch/corner stretch, etc to get up and around ROM, but the strap and stick stuff behind the back took longer. When my PT manually stretched me, he worked the forward and upper motion for a few weeks before he flipped me over and started going backwards. I think it's just the nature of the shoulder anatomy. The backwards stuff just takes longer.
     
    #91
  42. Say Chi Sin Lo

    Say Chi Sin Lo Legend

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    Internal rotation is the last thing to come back. Especially the thumb-up-the-spine motion.
     
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  43. Pacific lefty

    Pacific lefty Rookie

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    Thank you both for pointing that out! I am so relieved. I can put my hands on my waist now, so I will keep working with the exercises.

    I was getting worried so that really helps. Everything else is going quite well.
     
    #93
  44. Fee

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    Putting your hands on your waist is the easiest thing to do throughout the day. I like to believe it really does help. Also, I just really like to put my hands on my waist and stare things down. ;)
     
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  45. Say Chi Sin Lo

    Say Chi Sin Lo Legend

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    My surgically repaired arm can't go up the spine as high up as my other one. I'm off by an inch or two, and I don't miss it.
     
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  46. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Why do you need to reach up your spine TO PLAY TENNIS? What stroke does flexibility help?
    I am the LEAST flexible human in the world. My toes are 6" beyond my fingertips, when I do the flex test behind my back, my fingertips are 14" apart. I can't twist sideways nearly what most fat guys can.
    At 63, I can still hit +100mph first serves, kick the second at top of the head heights, and reach down for shoetop 1/2 volleys.
    Flex is only for the Yoga folks. BTW, I did attend 13 Yoga classes.
     
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  47. Pacific lefty

    Pacific lefty Rookie

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    Yeah, LeeD I have kind of dropped out of yoga. For some reason I thought the behind the back was as essential as other ROM exercises. I just hope I will be able to hit good serves whenever that happens. I am kind of used to getting a few easy points that way.

    Anyway,the waist thing is working, that was good advice (very relevant!) and I will keep doing.

    I am hoping when I meet my PT week of 25th she's going to let me hit ground strokes. I mean I can't see why I couldn't. I almost feel like I could today...
     
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  48. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Whoa, girlfriend...
    Before you even consider swing a tennis racket, you need to have the complete range of motion for the stroke WITHOUT holding a racket. Then if you decide to proceed, you need to tell yourself to hit at 40%, find a friend who's willing to feed you soft one bouncers, who doesn't try to push your limits.
    Maybe the friendly wall, with about 50 backhand slices, then a FEW forehands, nice and slow.
    It all depends on how much pain you get from swinging your hand WITHOUT holding a racket. The racket only adds weight, resistance, and worst of all, stretches your range of motion even more.
     
    #98
  49. Say Chi Sin Lo

    Say Chi Sin Lo Legend

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    I really think you are rushing back to the sport way too fast.
     
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  50. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    East side of San Francisco Bay
    I concur.
    Tennis only when normal activities like washing dishes, hanging towells up on the rack, brushing teeth, and waving goodbye to the kids don't bother you.
     

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