View Full Version : Shoulder Pain

10-28-2007, 03:45 PM
I'm noticing shoulder pain when I knit. It seems to be in the joint. I'm not knitting tightly or tensely (that I can tell). I just took some advil to help kill the inflammation. Anyone else get this? What do you do? Thanks in advance!:waah:

10-28-2007, 03:52 PM
You may be knitting with your head bent down for long periods of time, and you may have your elbows bent too. Watch how you're sitting, put a pillow in your lap to rest your arms on and get up every half hour or so and stretch out, do something else for a few minutes. And don't keep taking advil just so you can keep knitting. Pain is there for a reason; it tells us we're doing something wrong with our body.

10-28-2007, 03:58 PM
I agree with suzeeq. Take a break once in a while and stretch it out. Repetitive motion is never good for extended lengths of time. Good luck and happy knitting!

10-28-2007, 05:53 PM
Hi, I used to experience this, too. It got so bad, at one point, that I had to stop knitting altogether. Cause was the 'throwing' of the yarn repetitively in my right hand. Taking breaks and stretching helped a bit, but not for long.

I had the good fortune of having someone show me 'continental' style knitting where the yarn is held in the left hand and hands basically hold almost stationary, with no throwing of the yarn around the needle. Like magic, all my shoulder and back pains went away. You might try it and see if it helps you. One cool benefit of learning this method once you already know american style is that you can easily switch hands, whenever needed, and two-color knitting is a breeze... just knit one color using american, the other color using continental.

Becky Morgan
10-28-2007, 08:11 PM
I second the vote for continental. It's much easier on my arthritic body (and it's been that way since I was 14!)

Also, check your overall posture. My most comfortable position is kicked back in a chair with my feet up and my elbows supported either on pillows or chair arms. My right shoulder got threatenmed with replacement years ago, but it's still working so far and doesn't bother me if I avoid awkward positions, too much tension or holding heavy projects on straight needles. Another thing--if you're working on an afghan, big shawl, large sweater, etc., use circulars and let the weight fall on your lap rather than trying to hold it up because that HURTS.

10-28-2007, 09:46 PM
Just something for you continental knitters to know...

Just because english knitting is referred to as `throwing' doesn't mean we actually use large throwing motions to knit. For a lot of us, it's more of a flicking motion with the fingers. My hands barely leave the needles.

Any pain in a joint generally comes from tension in the muscles above it. Shoulder pain is a result of tension in the neck and upper back muscles.

10-29-2007, 12:05 AM
Hey there! Having just been through this same thing. ICE is your best friend. Ice your shoulder, drink lots of water and try some stretching in a doorway. Another nice thing to ease those tight back muscles is to lie on some tennis balls(which are in an old sock) place the tennis balls on either side of your spine.
Massage is always nice too! I will sometimes trade my knitting for massage!
Feel better soon, take some time to heal your body.

10-29-2007, 12:22 AM
Ah yes, tennis ball acupressure. It works, wish we had another one around the house, I can only fine one....