How to Avoid Shoulder Surgery – My Story

Ever wondered how to avoid shoulder surgery? Well, this is my story on how I avoided shoulder surgery. I am not suggesting this is the cure all for shoulder surgery, this is just the way I was able to avoid it.

So first things first what did I do to injure my shoulder. I simply did this…

THATS ALL I DID! Left the gym, came home and went to scratch the back of my shoulder and BAM! This loud pop in my right shoulder. It hurt to hold my arm up or raise it above shoulder height.

Doing what most people would do, the doctors’ office was the next stop. After X-rays and an MRI, it was determined I had a rotator cuff tear. More specifically I had developed shoulder impingement and tore the supraspinatus muscle.

how to avoid shoulder surgery

Prior Military? VA Medical Practice is not the best

The doctor, who was a VA doctor (Veterans Affairs-Military Doc) had told me to stop riding motocross, stop playing drums, stop working out, and stop any active activity. Sounds right for a short amount of time, but he said, “do this from now on.” So, I am just supposed to exist and deteriorate for the rest of my life? At 24 years old you can not tell me to just become sedentary.

Needless to say, left the office and searched for a second opinion only to find the same crap, “you need surgery.” I say crap because I felt in my gut that there was something else I could do because the body is capable of healing itself, why was a knife the only way to fix it?

Searching online was horrible there was not enough information as there is now about foam rolling and self-massage. Finally came across a website that used a foam roller and tennis ball. This was before it was popular now. Immediately put these tools to work.

Afte using the soft tissue techniques I had very little success with it. Called the doctor and requested physical therapy. Desperate to do anything to avoid surgery. My job at this time was a full-time touring drummer. Taking time off was out of the question.

The Physical Therapist assigned to me was beyond out of shape as he sat in his chair to demonstrate what I was to do with a resistance band. This was definitely NOT how to avoid shoulder surgery.

After Santa Clause was done demonstrating my exercises, the sense of helpless began to sit in. Surgery was going to be in my future. It made me sick to my stomach to think how young I was and that I need surgery. Seriously?

3 years later I signed up for massage school. I kept applying foam roller techniques and exercising with my injury as it slowly started to get better. Learning how to apply soft tissue techniques correctly changed EVERYTHING on how I applied the foam roller techniques. THIS is what helped me, actually knowing what I am doing besides rolling around on this thing that hurts like hell. How to avoid shoulder surgery was become more clear.

Now things are changing and at a much faster rate. Learning how the body moves, learning what muscles attach where, and postural deficiencies. This would be such an eye opener.  

I had developed shoulder impingement due to overtraining my chest and biceps. Wanted those mirror muscles and totally forgot about my back. 

Never needed surgery. I rehabbed my shoulder myself using soft tissue work and using exercises without a resistance band.  If you are wondering what these are, you are in luck because the following portion of this article is going to give you these exact techniques that I personally used to alleviate my shoulder pain. On top of that, I will give you the stretches that I would recommend if you are suffering from the same issue that I had.

Do You Want to Learn How to Avoid Shoulder Surgery? Of Course you do!

Here is everything used in the attempt to avoid surgery. Go slow, learn the techniques and be patient. It’s going to take some time, being consistent is key in creating change in the soft tissue.

Soft Tissue Work


Bodyweight Exercises

The ONE thing that made the MOST difference…

Thank you so much for taking the time to read this article. If you could please share this with someone who is experiencing any shoulder issues. I hope this helps all the active individuals out there that might experience this shoulder pain. 

If you have any questions please email me at I’d be happy to answer them.

One last thing, I have a program called Ground Zero. It is my Dynamic Bodyweight Training and Mobility program that helps build and maintain a healthy mobile body. This is where I start most of my client due to how restricted their range of motion, Everything you have seen here is from the program. It’s all done for you. All you have to do is follow the steps provided. If you are interested click the button below and it will take you to the program for more details.  

Learn More about Ground Zero