Empowering Human Performance | Athletigen Blog

Rotator Cuff Injury and Your DNA

Posted by Athletigen on Wed, Nov 13, 2019
Shoulder Rotator Cuff

Your rotator cuff is the network of tendons and muscles that support your shoulder joint. Activities like throwing or lifting and those that involve raising or rotating your arm can increase your risk of injury.

While your body has the ability to withstand this wear and tear, certain factors like your DNA may influence how well you can respond to repetitive strain. The FGFR1 gene is involved in cell growth and tissue repair. Certain variants may influence your risk of rotator cuff injuries through compromising your body’s healing ability between periods of intense use.

Those with certain variants of the FGFR1 gene could be at greater risk of rotator cuff injury. If you are at greater risk, remembering the following advice might help mitigate that risk. 

Your shoulder is designed to be most stable in external rotation. This is why when you're lifting in a front rack position you 'break the bar' and 'spread the bar' or use the cue ‘elbows in’. ‘Elbows in’ puts the shoulder in a very stable mechanical position, unlike elbow out, which internally rotates your shoulders.

If you're bench pressing, make sure that you keep your elbows in and maintain good technique — if you have an increased risk of rotator cuff injury, you may not get away with bad technique before injury sets in. Recognize your injury potential and prioritize good biomechanics.

Find out which variant of the FGFR1 gene you have and get expert advice and recommendations with the Optimum Movement and Recovery report.

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