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Pain in the Front of the Shoulder That Won't Go Away


Having ongoing pain in the front of your shoulder that just won't go away can be really frustrating. It can make it difficult to do your everyday tasks and enjoy your favorite activities like CrossFit or weightlifting. In this blog post, we will explain why this type of pain lingers, what causes it, and how you can effectively treat it.

Why Does the Pain Keep Coming Back?

The front of your shoulder is a complex area with many muscles attached to it, including the rotator cuff, pectoral muscles, and the long head of the biceps.

Muscles that attach to front of shoulder
Muscles that attach to front of shoulder

When we exercise or lift weights, these muscles contract and create tiny tears in the muscle fibers. This is a normal part of muscle growth and development.

Usually, after a workout, our body's natural healing process kicks in and repairs the damaged muscle fibers, causing soreness that lasts for a couple of days.

muscle breakdown, exercise soreness

However, if we overdo it or don't give ourselves enough time to recover, the healing process may not finish properly. This leads to ongoing inflammation of the tendons, which is called tendonitis or reactive phase tendinopathy, and results in that lingering shoulder pain.

tendonitis vs tendinosis

Understanding Tendinosis and Chronic Tendinopathy:

If the inflammation in the tendons continues for a long time, it can develop into a chronic condition

called tendinosis. During this phase, the collagen fibers in the tendon start to break down, causing degeneration. Chronic tendinopathy can cause persistent pain and discomfort and even increase the risk of more serious injuries like tears.

Treating Shoulder Pain That Won't Go Away:

In the short term, it's important to rest, reduce the intensity of your workouts, and focus on proper recovery to address tendonitis. While anti-inflammatory medications can offer temporary relief, they don't solve the underlying problem. If the pain persists and becomes chronic tendinopathy, a different approach is needed.

To effectively treat chronic tendinopathy and relieve that lingering shoulder pain, the focus shifts to restoring your shoulder's ability to handle stress and rebuilding the collagen fibers in the tendon. This requires a customized treatment plan developed by a healthcare professional. The plan may include exercises that involve holding a position without moving, slow and controlled full range of motion exercises, and gradually increasing the amount of stress on the tendons over a period of 6 to 12 weeks. It's important to work closely with a healthcare professional to get the best results.

Differentiating from Serious Conditions:

It's crucial to distinguish persistent shoulder pain from more serious conditions. Acute tears, which can happen from sudden movements or accidents, often come with sharp pain, popping sensations, significant bruising, or visible changes in the shoulder's appearance. If you experience these symptoms, it's important to seek medical attention, including imaging tests and consulting with an orthopedist.

pec tear, front of shoulder pain

Avoiding Misdiagnosis:

Sometimes, doctors might mistakenly diagnose persistent shoulder pain as biceps tendonitis alone. While the biceps tendon can contribute to the discomfort, it's important to consider all of the possible causes. Treating all the factors involved is essential for effectively addressing the condition and relieving the lingering pain.


Having ongoing pain in the front of your shoulder that won't go away can greatly affect your daily life and limit your ability to enjoy physical activities. Understanding the causes of this type of pain, knowing the progression from tendonitis to chronic tendinopathy, and seeking proper treatment are crucial for finding relief. By working with a healthcare professional who specializes in muscle and bone issues, you can restore your shoulder's function and get back to doing the things you love without that persistent pain.

If you're tired of dealing with lingering shoulder pain, we're here to help. Schedule an appointment with EVO Performance Therapy today by visiting our website and booking online at , or simply give us a call or text at 615-266-5599. Our dedicated team of experts is ready to provide you with personalized care and effective treatment to get you on the path to recovery.

Don't let shoulder pain hold you back any longer – take the first step towards a pain-free life!


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