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Training for 60yo novice w/ low bone density coming off shoulder+rotator cuff surgery

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  • Jordan Feigenbaum

    Thanks for the post. Your mom should actively be involved in PT right now and be discussing what type of RT and conditioning she can do right now. I suspect they will be conservative, but that's fine. There are plenty of exercises and conditioning modes that she can do without going overhead.

    As far as coaching goes, it really depends what she wants and her history. I suspect she would do better with in-person coaching if she's never really exercised before and there's someone who knows what they're doing around you. Later on after she's been exercising for awhile, online coaching may be an option.

    If this were my family member, I'd probably get the deets on what she's cleared to do exercise-wise from the PT and take her to the gym with you, introducing her to exercises she can do in a format similar to the Beginner Prescription.


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  • Training for 60yo novice w/ low bone density coming off shoulder+rotator cuff surgery

    My mother is 60 and had these surgeries 3 months ago:

    right shoulder arthroscopy
    rotator cuff tear repair

    She also has below average bone density for her age which was found after taking a DXA scan.
    She is concerned about the low bone density and not being able to do daily tasks around the house/yard and wants to get stronger, and has asked for my help.
    She is active (walks/hiking), eats healthy and has a normal BMI but has no strength training experience.


    1. How should she best go about discussing with her doctor when it is safe to start strength training? The doctor told her no overhead/shoulder movements for 6 months.
    2. Are there other machine/dumbbell exercises she should do in the mean time before she get cleared to squat/bench/press/deadlift?
    3. What would be the best way to spend money on coaching - a few in person sessions at an affiliate gym or a few months of online coaching?
    4. Is there anything else I can do to support her to get stronger? I was excited to hear her organic interest in strength training, and don't want to come across as too pushy and let her make the decisions for herself.‚Äč