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Spot of pain behind shoulder

Table of Contents

How People Describe This Pain Pattern

People complain of a spot of pain deep in the back of the shoulder. It often occurs after other shoulder pain, particularly after this trigger point, has been treated and released. It is a lingering pain that is hard to connect to an activity but often bothers them when I ask them to stretch the shoulder as they reach up and forward.

Most people are usually not aware of how this pain was created. Often, they report that as lingering issue after other shoulder pain has been treated.

How You Activate and Intensify This Pain Pattern

Clients report that they have this spot of pain deep in the back of the shoulder when they sleep on their side, trapping the shoulder as they extend the elbow above the head. I was surprised in the first few years of practice how consistently it occurs after releasing other shoulder trigger points.

Research implies that it may occur from an unstable or difficult attempt to reach up and back at the same time. I don’t hear that in my practice.

People do report that it gets a shot of pain when the arm jerks forward and across the body. This happens when a dog jerks the leash or someone uses a grab bar and gets a stretchy jerk upward.

The Musculoskeletal Anatomy Behind Your Pain

Musculoskeletal Anatomy

About these Illustrations…

This post on anatomy contains standard information about the origin, insertion, function, and innervation of muscles. Additionally, it includes information on functional considerations and anomalies.

Find Related Posts

Anatomy posts have a grid of all related posts. This includes posts on pain patterns, self-care, therapy notes, NMT protocols, cranial techniques, and cases.

Getting Relief on Your Own

Clinically Proven
Self-Care Strategies

This post has strategies for getting relief on your own. Explore how to change your activities, stretching, and other strategies that relieve the pain associated with this trigger point.

Therapy Notes for Massage and Bodywork

Better Bodywork
Through Shared Expertise

This post has techniques, tips, treatment routines, and anatomy illustrations to improve the bodyworker’s approach.

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Tony Preston has a practice in Atlanta, Georgia, where he sees clients. He has written materials and instructed classes since the mid-90s. This includes anatomy, trigger points, cranial, and neuromuscular.

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*This site is undergoing significant changes. We are reformatting and expanding the posts to make them easier to read. The result will also be more accessible and include more patterns with better self-care. Meanwhile, there may be formatting, content presentation, and readability inconsistencies. Until we get older posts updated, please excuse our mess.