The painful shoulder during freestyle swimming. An electromyographic cinematographic analysis of twelve muscles

Am J Sports Med. 1991 Nov-Dec;19(6):577-82. doi: 10.1177/036354659101900604.


The purpose of this paper is to describe the patterns of activity of 12 shoulder muscles in painful shoulders, and compare those patterns of activity with normal shoulders. The results show significant differences in 7 of the 12 muscles. Those muscles included the anterior deltoid, middle deltoid, infraspinatus, subscapularis, upper trapezius, rhomboids, and the serratus anterior. There were no significant differences between muscle activity patterns of normal versus painful shoulders in the latissimus dorsi, pectoralis major, teres minor, supraspinatus, or the posterior deltoid. This information will contribute to the development of muscle conditioning programs to optimize performance and prevent injury, as well as develop programs for scientific rehabilitation strengthening.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Biomechanical Phenomena
  • Electromyography*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Motion Pictures
  • Movement / physiology
  • Muscles / physiology
  • Muscles / physiopathology*
  • Pain / physiopathology*
  • Shoulder / physiology
  • Shoulder / physiopathology*
  • Shoulder Injuries
  • Swimming*