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Thursday, May 9, 2019

🔑Keys To Beating SHOULDER Pain....Part ONE

After much thought and many requests from fellow gym members, I have decided to make a quick post on my thoughts for should health and care.

It will be a two part post where this one focuses on pinning the problem for where MOST go wrong....

MOBILITY of the lumbar and thoracic spine!

As our country has aged and developed....we have become more accustomed to desk jobs and sitting for long periods of time which, in return, wreck havoc on your shoulders and posture, leaning you stiff as a board and basically "setting yourself up" for injuries if you try to train hard without doing your drills.

Mobility is KING when it comes to health. Plain and simple. You need it, I need it...EVERYONE needs it.

So if you don't take 5-10 minutes a day to work on it, don't be surprised if you start getting bodily aches and pains.

Besides the point, lets get back to the back and shoulders. Most injuries that flare up shoulders stem from a lack of movement in areas surrounding the lumbar and thoracic spine, which is why these drills can be life savers for you when trying to re-hab or even just keep yourself healthy! The glenohumeral joint sits on the scapula(shoulder blade) which moves in accordance with the thoracic spine(mid back). 

Taking the time to complete a well rounded approach to improve motion in ALL these areas are key, and below I have just a FEW exercises you can do prior to your training.

MOVEMENT of the Lumbar and Thoracic Spine Come FIRST!

Lumbar Spine Work:

Quadrupled Overhead Reach -

Helps with Lumbar spine control and stability. Less flares and winging. 

Begin on your hands and knees; hands under shoulders and knees under hips. Spread your shoulder blades by pushing your body away from the floor. Find a neutral pelvis, you may need to arch and tuck your low back to find neutrality. While keep a neutral low back elevate one arm out to your side into a 90/90 position, then slowly reach over head. Attempt to keep the arm as close as you can towards the ceiling. As you reach overhead rotate your thumb towards the ceiling. Return to starting position and repeat!

Compensation: Avoid allowing your shoulder blade to sag during this exercise. Make sure to keep your torso directly towards the floor, avoid trunk rotation especially to the side your are reaching overhead with.

Shoulder Supine Wall Slide:

Lumbar support and control with OH motion

How: Begin on your back with your hips and knees bent to a 90 degree position. Make sure to keep your core engaged while you perform this. I have a foam roller between my knees to keep my legs aligned. Tighten your core by pushing the small of your back towards the floor, this may be easier if you squeeze the roller with your knees. Now bring your arms out about 90 degrees then slide your arms overhead as high as you can overhead. Return to starting position and repeat. If you can’t place your wrists flat against the floor, it’s ok- work within what you have.

Feel: You will feel the muscles of the shoulder blade and shoulder working, you may also notice a stretch in the middle of your back as you push into the overhead position.


Thoracic Spine Work: 

Key for shoulder motion and without proper mobility it will limit the motions to the shoulder. These begin extension and rotation. 

Foam Roll With OH Reach:

How: Place the foam roller perpendicular to your spine onto a segment which you want to work on (personally I like to work from bottom to top). Now elevate your arms as far back as you can-in an attempt to touch the floor. This movement is very similar to a wall angel. Spend a few repetitions on each segment-then move up toward the next.

Feel: You will feel this in the middle of your back, specifically the area that is hinging over the foam roller.

Compensation: Don’t allow your but to come off the floor or your ribs from flaring out, this is typically due to excessively hinging at the lumbar spine. This exercise is designed to target the Thoracic Spine.

T Spin Open Book Rotations:

How: Begin on your side, then bring the leg that is elevated over and across your body. Hold this leg onto the floor with the opposite arm. Make sure to keep the knee close to your chest to avoid motion coming from the low back. With the arm closer to the ceiling alternate between reaching in front of you and reaching back towards the floor. Perform slowly and attempt to reach as far back as you can towards the floor. Exhale as you are rotate. While laying on my left side shown here, I am working on my right rotation.
Feel: You will feel a stretch in the middle of your back, specifically the thoracic spine. You may additionally feel a stretch in the front of the shoulder while reaching back towards the floor.

Spider Climb With Reach:

How: Setup in a kneeling position and simply open your right leg forward first, take your right arm and open it in towards the right leg and follow your eyes with the movement of your arm. Repeat 8-10 reps per side. 

Compensation: Do not keep your head straight, move WITH the hand motion. Keep back straight and flat. 

Supine Banded Shoulder Flexion:

I got this one from Eric Cressey who is the master of the shoulder! It gives great feedback for a posterior pelvic tilt, a neutral spine and t-spine extension.

Gravity assists to overcome stiffness in the lats, triceps and pecs.

There you have it!

In addition to these you can try exercises like(simple searches can help you find them): 

1) Wall Slides
2) Lat/T Spine Mobilizations 
3) Scapular Pro/Re Tractions 
4) Back to Wall Shoulder Flexions
5) Deadbugs

Stay tuned for part TWO as I show a few exercises to help STRENGTHEN the shoulders to make them virtually BULLETPROOF.

Remember, please like and share this post with someone who may suffer from shoulder pain and need this! I am always looking to help people when I can!

Happy Thursday Friends!

Remember, if you are having pain...STOP what you are doing and find the culprit. Don't continue training through pain and using drugs and creams hoping it will someday go away!

Figure out the root cause, and if you are not sure, message me and I would be more than happy to set up a session to go over your history with you.

Now, go crush your workouts tomorrow!

Coach Mikey

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