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Miguel de Maria

Posts: 3523
Joined: Oct. 20 2003
From: Phoenix, AZ

Has this happened to you? 

On Saturday, I played a 4-hr gig with a duo, doing mostly rumbas, GK, santana, etc. I was using a thin-bodied Cordoba guitar for the first time, and also was standing up, something I have only done a few times before.

After one song, I noticed that my right shoulder was really tired. We sat down at that point and started another song. I was having trouble getting my shoulder in position to play. At first I though that the guitar strap was pulling it down, or because I was wearing two layers, that was restricting my mobility. Anyway, the rest of the day I just kind of struggled through it.

When I got home, I came to a startling realization--I could not raise my right arm to even close to 90 degrees! If I put my arms down my side and tried to lift them out, like as in a jumping jack, the left would easily swing up above my head, the right would not even get to horizontal. There was no pain, no sense of fatigue. It was just like my right arm wasn't constructed the same, there were no muscles there. No matter what I did, I could not get the arm to rise.

The next day I found that I could raise it a little higher, with some tightness. This morning, I can get the arm above my head, but it feels like I am lifting thirty pounds with that side. It's very difficult to do it, but I can.

What the hell is this!

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Arizona Wedding Music Guitar
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jan. 23 2006 15:00:04
 
TGerman

 

Posts: 119
Joined: Nov. 27 2005
 

RE: Has this happened to you? (in reply to Miguel de Maria

Hey Miguel,

How does the shoulder feel now? Are you able to play sitting down right now? If so, check to see if your shoulder is rotated forward or if it is RELAXED and down (which is where it should be). If you roll your shoulder forward all the time and are tense you could be putting strain on the tendons in your arm where it connects to the shoulder (part of the rotator cuff complex). If you watch guys like Todd and Grisha you will notice their posture is more relaxed and upright, there is no tension in their neck, shoulders or arms.

Take a look at what you are doing while you play or, better yet, have someone else take an impartial look at you, BUT if you have more pain then STOP you don't want to make it worse.

Let me know what you find.

Todd

BTW, I'm not a doctor but I happen to know quite a bit about weirdo problems, plus I am getting my OWN shoulder operated on this friday...urghh
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jan. 23 2006 17:56:33
 
PacoPaella

Posts: 163
Joined: Nov. 7 2004
 

RE: Has this happened to you? (in reply to Miguel de Maria

Miguel,

i had similar problems when i was shooting a lot. Saw a doctor and had my shoulder xrayed, it turned out as chalk in the shoulder. Thats pretty common problem when overloading the shoulder, if you have the disposition. It wont go away without therapy though so theres no use waiting and suffering imho. You should just go and see your orthopedist.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jan. 23 2006 18:15:12
 
Miguel de Maria

Posts: 3523
Joined: Oct. 20 2003
From: Phoenix, AZ

RE: Has this happened to you? (in reply to Miguel de Maria

I can play, but I still can't really raise my arms up. I did some practice this morning and now it seems to have aggravated it. Now that area is all pretty tight, even after a bath.

What the hell is chalk in the shoulder!? It doesn't sound good.

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Arizona Wedding Music Guitar
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jan. 23 2006 18:45:35
 
duende

Posts: 3051
Joined: Dec. 15 2003
From: Sweden

RE: Has this happened to you? (in reply to Miguel de Maria

i had chalk in my left foot from time to time after i brooke it some years ago,
the chalk hurt ouch! I belive it was my body was repairing my foot just a little toooo much

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This is hard stuff!
Don't give up...
And don't make it a race.
Enjoy the ray of sunshine that comes with every new step in knowledge.

RON
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jan. 23 2006 18:58:31
 
PacoPaella

Posts: 163
Joined: Nov. 7 2004
 

RE: Has this happened to you? (in reply to Miguel de Maria

When you overload a certain part of your body, be it a muscle or a joint, the body reacts with reinforcing that part by building up chalk. That can go to a degree where it gets in the way of the movement. Then it has to be removed one way or another, otherwise you will live with the pain forever.

Its easy to see on xray pictures.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jan. 23 2006 19:04:05
 
Miguel de Maria

Posts: 3523
Joined: Oct. 20 2003
From: Phoenix, AZ

RE: Has this happened to you? (in reply to Miguel de Maria

That doesn't sound good!

The thing is, I've been playing in the classical position for about a year, and had no problems at all. Then I switched back to Paco position about a month ago. Can chalk build up that fast?

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jan. 23 2006 19:06:50
 
TGerman

 

Posts: 119
Joined: Nov. 27 2005
 

RE: Has this happened to you? (in reply to Miguel de Maria

Miguel,

I would have it looked at if I were you, you don't want to make it worse by trying play through it. When you see an ortho it is very important to, not only find out the diagnosis, but WHY you are having this problem at all. As I said in an earlier post, it very well could be stemming from somewhere else in your body and manifesting itself as tension in your shoulder causing you this pain that you now feel. I'm not saying that is the case, it could just be that you have a tight shoulder, but it is still an avenue of thought that needs to be investigated.

Keep us informed,
Todd
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jan. 23 2006 19:11:02
 
rickm

 

Posts: 446
Joined: Jan. 23 2004
 

RE: Has this happened to you? (in reply to Miguel de Maria

something similar happened to me years ago, and it was eventually diagnosed as a pinced nerve in the shoulder. Lost all the strenght in my right side, went from curling 140 to 5 lbs. There was no particular thing that cured it, basically it was start over again and rebuild the nueral pathways through therapy. You should probably ahve this checked by a skiled specalist. It doesnt sound muscular to me or even, someting akin to "chalk" You might have pressered a nerve by long time compression.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jan. 23 2006 19:29:13
 
Ron.M

Posts: 7051
Joined: Jul. 7 2003
From: Scotland

RE: Has this happened to you? (in reply to rickm

Mike,
Sorry to hear about that. This may be the wrong advice here, but personally I wouldn't worry too much. Don't go rushing to a Doctor, who will probably set you up for X-Rays, MR scans and investigative surgery etc and keep you 3 months off work before telling you that he's happy to say that there's nothing there and charge you $3000. LOL!
Just carry on as usual but take it easier and see how it goes over the next couple of weeks.
I've never heard of anyone being rushed to hospital for an emergency shoulder operation! LOL!
The body is normally capable of restoring itself if you give it a chance IMO.
I've had all sorts of frightening pains and symptoms of stuff that just "went away"..
You could have been concentrating so much in an awkward position that you pinched a nerve or restricted the blood flow to a muscle or something.
The fact that it's improving so quickly is a good sign IMO.

Give it a week at least...

cheers

Ron
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jan. 23 2006 19:49:03
 
Francisco

Posts: 879
Joined: Jun. 13 2005
From: SW USA

RE: Has this happened to you? (in reply to Miguel de Maria

That's a bummer, Miguel. What's concerning is that what you describe does sound like a neurologic issue. I'm not convinced it is of the 'pinched nerve' variety however. If I'm not mistaking, there is usually some pain involved with pinched nerves.

gtr66>> Did you have any pain when you were diagnosed with a pinched nerve?

Miguel, I know you've been doing a little yoga lately. You don't think the injury might be associated with that, do you?

Regardless, I don't think of this as an 'acute' situation. If I was having this problem, and leaving my arm in a natural position did not cause me any pain, then I would probably give it a little time, and see what direction your progress goes after a couple of weeks. If it gets worse, I might seek a professional opinion or two or three. But, as you may know, I'm of the opinion that the body has an amazing capacity to heal itself. Anyhoo, good luck.

Good luck to you too, Todd - surgery can be a serious thing. Rotator cuff? General anesthetic? Stay safe.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jan. 23 2006 20:56:53
 
Doitsujin

Posts: 5063
Joined: Apr. 10 2005
 

RE: Has this happened to you? (in reply to Miguel de Maria

That really doesnt sound good. You should stop playing till your shoulder is normal again. I think the chalk thing wont come during a gig. It would take more time I think. It could be that a nerve was clamped. I would go to a good doctor and after that I would start with well structured streching and muscle trining for both arms. Strange thing.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jan. 23 2006 21:26:35
 
Ryan002

 

Posts: 173
Joined: Oct. 18 2005
From: Singapore

RE: Has this happened to you? (in reply to Miguel de Maria

That does happen to me, though I also have issues turning my head when it does happen. I have no idea why. A friend I have who is into physiotherapy tells me that this is the result of a previously sore muscle or tendon being placed in an awkward position for a long time, and then "setting" into that position.

Use acupuncture if you can get access to it. It really helps...
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jan. 24 2006 4:44:45
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