Why Your Client’s Should Stop Exercising and Get Trigger Points Therapy

Today I have a guest blog post for you from Bill Huhn.

Bill is a Trigger Point Bodyworker and will be teaching the upcoming courses:

Understanding Trigger Points to Overcome Pain with William N. Huhn – March 6, 2010

HANDS-ON: Trigger Point for Shoulder & Migraine Issues with William N. Huhn – March 7, 2010

Enjoy the blog post.

I know Bill shocked me with a few of the things he said about exercise and trigger points.

Why Your Clients Should Stop Exercising if they Have Trigger Points

My tendency is to advise my clients to stop exercising when trigger points are present.

This may lead some fitness and health professionals to believe that I am anti-fitness/exercise.

However, I am only “anti-exercise” to the involved muscles, while there are trigger points present in my clients.

It may also appear to some, that I believe trigger point bodywork will “cure” everything!

Removing trigger points will not “cure” everything… although they are at the root of more issues (including pain) than most people (including health professionals) are aware!

Please read on…

Shoulder Issues & Trigger Points

Often, I seem to “go against the flow”, when it comes to conventional ideas and methodology, concerning the initial approach to rehabilitation of shoulder issues.

I commonly find when there is a problem with the shoulder, that exercise and stretching is the primary rehab technique employed. Fundamentally, I do agree with this methodology, but only if the muscles have first been checked for trigger points (TrPs).

If you subscribe to the belief that the shoulder muscles have to be strengthened, then shouldn’t you also have to ask why these muscles have become weak and in need of exercise?

The usual diagnosis (and misdiagnosis) for shoulder issues, is arthritis, rotator tear, adhesive capsulitis (frozen shoulder), bicipital tendinitis and bursitis. And of course there may be true structural damage to the joint. However, we rarely hear a diagnosis that describes trigger points as being causal to the issue. This is because most health professionals are not familiar with the effects of TrPs… it is rarely, if ever, taught in curriculum.

The Trigger Point Perspective:

Trigger points will cause involved muscle to be weak and fatigue easily.

I have found that about 95% of my clients who suffer from shoulder issues, also have TrPs in the SITS and other scapular muscles. Of course, there are other (including medical) reasons for muscle weakness.

A muscle that has TrPs, will not build mass. Exercising any muscle that has TrPs, will be a waste of time as the afflicted muscle(s) will not build mass. And since the primary purpose of the exercise is to strengthen the muscle(s) (i.e. build mass), one has to ask if this exercise protocol should be the “first approach” for client recovery. I’m sure all rehab specialists and fitness trainers have seen some client’s shoulder symptoms exacerbate during/after exercise and stretching routines are employed.

When I talk about procedure for healing a shoulder issue, I have consistently found that a specific protocol must be followed for consistent success.

I will share that protocol in the next blog post.

– William Huhn
Trigger Point Bodyworker
NCBTMB Approved Provider

Bill is working on part 2 to this blog post.  I will have it for you next week.

You can also see a past interview I did with Bill about trigger point therapy by clicking here.

Until then, take care.

Rick Kaselj, MS

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