Arm Exerciser

Fully assembled shoulder exerciser.

Arm exerciser enables you to make your own shoulder helper for only 5 dollars.

Enabling your patients to exercise at home, after frozen shoulder treatments for example has never been easier. Make this gadget for them for only 5 dollars, or let them make it themselves; it's simple.

After successful chiropractic treatment of a rotator cuff injury it is vital to go through a series of exercises to strengthen and generally rehab the strained muscle. Fail to go through this rehabilitation and the chances are high that the pain will return again the next time you play tennis, use a heavy drill, paint the ceiling, or something that you don't do regularly. 

In our clinic we used to start with a series of simple isometric exercises, followed a couple weeks later with this commercially available arm exerciser. It retails for around 15 dollars.


Commercially available shoulder exerciser.
Homemade shoulder exerciser kit.

The only problem is that it's made with a cheap and nasty pulley which gets red hot when you are arm exercising. Then the nylon rope starts to fray and will fail.

There is a simple solution; make your own. You will need a few items.

  1. Two metres of nylon rope
  2. A moderately good pulley
  3. Two pieces of broomstick, each roughly 14cm long
  4. A short piece of cord

Maximum cost is five dollars.

  • Cut two lengths of the broomstick to about 14cm long. Using a drill press, make a hole in the centre just large enough to take your nylon cord.
  • Thread the cord through the first handle, over the pulley, and through the other handle. Make small knots on the ends.
  • Thread your other piece of cord through the hook on the pulley, about 6 inches long. Knot the end.
Shoulder exerciser handles.

Done! What could be easier than making a shoulder exerciser? I'll try and summons the energy to put a video onto YouTube.

Meantime, hook the short length of cord in the door jam, about the height of the handle with the knot on the far side of the door. It can also be placed at the top of the door to change the angle of attack. Apply the appropriate exercises according to the injury and desired effect.

Tennis elbow exercises are difficult to describe, and I need to take some photographs, and perhaps do another YouTube film.

Meantime, stretch the arm out straight in front of you, flex the wrist and fingers. Now grasp the middle finger of your naughty arm, with the other hand and stretch pull that middle finger towards you. Not out of the socket! In a bad case of tennis elbow you'll feel a painful stretch reaching up towards the elbow.

Arm exerciser

Arm exerciser is really very easy to make to help recover from injury.

Frozen shoulder

Frozen shoulder every chiropractor knows is a tough condition, but with judicious use of the arm exerciser, plus every known trick that the DC has in his tool box, the pain is usually halved within a month or two; full range of motion may take a year to return.

Carpal tunnel syndrome

Pronator teres muscles can affect the median nerve and mimic carpal tunnel syndrome.

Some care is needed here. Underlying some cases of arm pain is a slipped disc in the neck and injudicious cervical manipulation can certainly increase the bulge.

In every case where there is pain in the arm, and slipped disc arm pain must be ruled out, I like to do both the Upper Limb Tension Test, and  that of Adson too, though I do the latter in a modified way to make it more specific.

Adson's test

Personally, I find that Adson's Test done in the classical manner is positive in many normal patients. False positives. However, it is the most useful test to confirm a suspected Thoracic Outlet Syndrome that may be causing pain and tingling in the arms and hands.

Computer Ergonomics and arm pain

Repetitive strain injury, mouse arm, pain and tingling in the hands is often simply the rest of a poor computer setup. Before any form of invasive or expensive treatment, it is always worth giving the ergonomics a thought.

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