Physical Therapy – Weightlifting Post Shoulder Surgery

Welcome to a Medical Minute segment with Matthew Kudron, Physical Therapy Supervisor at the Colorado Springs Orthopaedic Group located off Briargate Parkway.

The video below will cover the recommended timeframe to return to weightlifting after having a shoulder surgery.

Common shoulder surgeries include rotator cuff repairs, labral repairs, and total shoulder replacements. Within these different surgeries, there are different timeframes in which a patient may return to activities such as weightlifting and high intensity upper body activities. The progression through recovery after a shoulder surgery may vary however, a typical timeframe one can begin increasing their activity intensity, specifically with overhead activities, can range between three to six months post-surgery. We strongly recommend to diligently follow your physical therapy protocols prescribed by your physician and physical therapist to ensure proper recovery.

Within these protocols prescribed by your physician and physical therapist, there are three main recovery milestones that need to occur before getting into weightlifting post-surgery. The first is tissue healing, the second is achieving full range of motion and the third is building full strength of both the rotator cuff and the muscles that help stabilize the shoulder blade.

Some of the exercises that are generally safe after a shoulder surgery include bicep curls, triceps pulldowns, and rotator cuff exercises, however please follow your physical therapists instructions prior to attempting any of these exercises. Some exercises to avoid are those exercises where you cannot see your hands, such as a triceps dip exercise, or exercises where your arms are in a position that are extended away from your body or in a wide grip position. These exercises may put the shoulder in a vulnerable position as demonstrated in the video above.

To schedule a physical therapy appointment at our North Campus location call. (719) 867-7320
To schedule a physical therapy appointment at our South Campus location call. (719) 622-4524

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