Barbell Medicine

On Beliefs vs. Evidence

We all have beliefs about the world. Some we may have spent significant time establishing – for example, pursuing a degree in a particular field of study or passively adopted beliefs from years of social-cultural indoctrination. Sometimes we may even hold beliefs that we aren’t entirely sure where they developed from, or what evidence we […]

On Pain and Movement – Caught in an Endless Loop of Misinformation

We’ve previously published a number of articles on pain and the complexities of making sense of pain both as a human who personally experiences pain and being tasked with helping those clinically with their pain experiences. In this week’s article, we’ll try to further the conversation about the pain experience by examining how people with […]

The Barbell Medicine Guide to Tendinopathy

Have you ever been told you have “tendonitis,” golfer’s elbow, tennis elbow, or jumper’s knee? Tendonitis is a common concern among those who engage in physical activity and sports. However, both the diagnosis and the usual advice for management are often confusing and leave folks struggling to return to their desired activities. If you’ve been […]

Shoulder, Part IV: The Rotator Cuff Teardown

Shoulder, Part IV: The Rotator Cuff Teardown

The “rotator cuff” is a set of four muscles around the glenohumeral joint including the supraspinatus, infraspinatus, subscapularis, and teres minor (see figure). These muscles all originate from the scapula, insert at various points on the humerus, and serve multiple coordinated functions including abduction, adduction internal rotation, external rotation, and stabilization. Each muscle is considered […]

The Shoulder, Part III: Internal Impingement

The Shoulder, Part III: Internal Impingement

In part 2 of our shoulder series we discussed the topic of “shoulder impingement”, which is commonly understood as the mechanical compression of the tissues beneath the acromion process, resulting in pain or dysfunction — better known as external impingement. We described the biomechanical theory behind this diagnosis, and examined the available research evidence on […]

The Shoulder, Part II: External Impingement

In the first article of this series we discussed the concept of “normal” or “abnormal” scapular movement (i.e., scapular dyskinesis), which is the pathomechanical foundation upon which other shoulder-related diagnoses and narratives are built. “Shoulder impingement” is one of these ideas that is commonly discussed in the coaching, rehab, and orthopedic worlds. The narrative describes […]

Barbell Medicine - Mobility Explained

Mobility Explained

Rolling through Instagram or Facebook, we find narratives and interventions claiming to improve something called “mobility”. We can select from options including stretching, foam rolling / body tempering, lacrosse ball smashing, voodoo flossing, power tools converted to guns being sold as therapeutic, and the list goes on. The level of marketing would make even Donald […]


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