Update: Lessons Learned from Shoulder Injury

Patience.

That’s the key. And its difficult for me. I’m a very impatient person. I suppose that’s relative. But when it comes to working out and my health, I want to be 100% right MEOW!

Just to recap, I was teaching an Acro Yoga class and caught someone while they were falling. I immediately heard something pop. I took it "easier" but I was still trying to do my normal routines of teaching yoga and CrossFit. I remember still bench pressing, though very sore and with pain, and trying overhead presses. My doctor diagnosed me with an injury to my subscapularis. These tests were correct and that was a problem. I figured, muscle strains heal fairly quickly, but after a few months, I wasn’t feeling healed at all. So I entered Physical Therapy. They diagnosed me with a torn shoulder labrum. That seems more serious. So the biggest part of my treatment was rest by way of avoidance. I didn’t do any pressing or overhead movements at all. I didn’t demonstrate chaturanga’s or anything crazy when I taught yoga. I think this was the right course of action. I also worked hard on my shoulder stability, which I still do today.

The problem with the process is how slowly the healing has been. Even last week, I was thinking I would need surgery because I wasn’t improving. The "avoidance" was necessary because I feel that healing has taken place in my labrum. But I totally lost mobility and strength. I haven’t done a pullup or bench press in more than 3 months. But just this week I felt closer to doing those things. I did bench presses last weekend and they felt good. I went really light though, never over 135# (60 kilos). I did incline dumbbell presses. And just two days ago, I did jumping pullups, something that was super painful a few months ago. I thought I would have pain and would totally have regretted doing them. But I feel pretty good. Actually, really good.

Last night, I taught Rocket Yoga and then Hot Yoga. I felt like my muscles in my pecs, lats, and shoulder have gained back the pliability that they had lost. I am moving so much better and feel stronger. I don’t think it was until last night that I felt like I was really improving.

I am going to Costa Rica in June and hope to start Massage School in the Fall. I thought if I needed surgery, it would derail all my plans. But now I’m much more hopeful. Though, I know I’m not out of the woods yet. I still have to play safe. I’m still not ready to go back to Acro Yoga yet. And, anything forceful or unstable to my shoulder is just not happening for a while. No heavy bag work, no heavy stone lifts, and no butterfly kipping pullups. But I’m happy where I am right now. I do what I can do. And I’m getting much stronger and healthier.

So I am happy! Happy Valentine’s Day!

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