Shoulder Pain


The shoulder is complex area that serves as the meeting point for the upper arm, shoulder blade and the collarbone. The joint is supported by more muscles than any other joint in the body as it is so shallow.

This allows for its great range of motion but does mean it is the most frequently dislocated joint. It is vulnerable to dislocation especially in children which is why it is not a good idea to pull a child along by his arm. Some minor disclocations called 'subluxations' can be treated with osteopathy. 

There are many causes of shoulder pain which may also be related to the neck or postural pain or even exacerbated or caused by imbalances in the ribs, hips, pelvis and lower back.

We treat tendonitis, strains to shoulder muscles, bursitis (inflammation of the 'cushion' that is between bones), rotator cuff injuries, sprains and 'frozen shoulder'. Without treatment, the tendons in the rotator cuff may wear down or tear, which can lead to worse pain, shoulder weakness and problems with lifting or using the shoulder at all.

After an assessment, we will find and treat the problem! Some organs refer into the shoulder which is why we always invite you to fill in a consultation form with your medical history and why we want to know how your overall health is.

Before you try any invasive procedures such as steroid injections, surgery or embark on drugs, come in and let us see if we can help!

The shoulder joint is the most mobile joint in the body. Three ligaments protect and surround the joint but most of its stability comes form the powerful rotator cuff muscles. Surrounding the rotator cuff muscles are many groups of muscles that contribute to the incredible range of motion. Between the bones is a bursa or cushion. This too can become inflamed and cause pain.

The most common complaint is the inability to lift the shoulder past 90 degrees. The pain can be severe and interfere with daily tasks and self-care.

As we get older, joints do tend to need more tender loving care which is where regular massage comes in. Exercising and stretching also help to keep shoulder joints (and all joints for that matter) healthy.

Relaxation Massage has a huge part to play in shoulder problems as they are often linked to stress.

Common shoulder complaints include frozen shoulder, shoulder impingement, shoulder osteoarthritis, dislocation and repetitive strain injury (RSI) of the tendons of the shoulder. Pain may also be coming from the neck or ribs.Lesions, there, will certainly be contributing to the situation. Nerve pain also known as trapped nerves, is common in the shoulder.

This area relies massively on all the muscles to do their job properly all of the time. If one muscle is tired or injured it will affect all the rest of the muscles in this area, resulting in reduced shoulder movement and pain. This can be acute after an injury where an icepack and rest may be indicated.

It may turn in to a chronic pain.

Chronic conditions continue over time. Some people come to see us having suffered shoulder pain for ten years! The sooner treatment is started the better.

Regular Remedial and Sports Massage is recommended. Relaxation and Relaxation massage is also a great idea as we store so much tension in our neck and shoulder area. An osteopathic check up is an excellent idea too.


Remedial & Sports Massage

  • reduces muscle spasm so encourages balance in joints.
  • relieves pain
  • with less pain, joints can be used more
  • increases movement ensuring that synovial fluid is secreted, which is essential for a healthy joint as the articular cartilage does not have a blood supply.
  • keeps joints mobile which helps to prevent arthritis.
  • increases blood flow to the structures of the joint
  • increases drainage.
  • also helps via the special sensory receptors around the joint telling the brain where the joint is, in terms of space and the movement it is capable of producing.


  • Similar to acupuncture, Shiatsu works to regulate the flow of energy or ‘qi’ thus maintaining health in all ages. Qi is the vital energy in the body that underlies all functions.
  • Qi flows in specific pathways known as meridians
  • Shiatsu practitioners can detect which meridians are too energised and those which are lacking in energy. Either imbalance can lead to blocks to healing and also to what we call disease.
  • Specific points relative to the presenting pain are pressed on the major meridians of the body to cause energy to flow more easily. This combined with acupressure, trigger points and Thai style stretching makes this a is very effective treatment.
  • This explains why so many are delighted with the improvement in constipation, painful arthritic joints, headaches, overwhelm, anxiety, obsessing about work, memory problems, period pain, nausea, asthma and so on.