The shoulder complex is an intricate network of muscles and joints working together to produce a great deal of motion. This network also works to stabilize everyday movements and maintain a healthy spine.
Training shoulder ‘stability’ does not necessarily mean shoulder stiffness or tightness. It means control of movements you want and resistance to movement that you don’t want.
Stability must come from the soft tissue. A very important function of the rotator cuff is to keep the head of the humerus (upper arm bone) properly in the socket while assisting the bigger surrounding muscles (chest, lats, deltoids, etc) to move the arm through whatever ranges you choose.
We’ve all been told at some point that our posture needs to improve, but what does that mean? Take a look at the pictures above. Notice in the first that his spine and shoulders are rounded and his chin is poking forward. In the second picture his shoulder blades are pulled back, his chin is tucked and his core is engaged. Many of us are rounded like this due to poor posture at a desk, it’s more common than you think! Try practicing standing (or sitting) like the second picture once every hour throughout the day.
Have you ever had a knot in your upper back? Shoulders feeling tight and you just can’t loosen them up? Try a tennis ball massage! All you need is a wall, a ball, and 2 minutes every few hours. Lean up against the wall, placing the ball in the sore spot, slowly move around letting the ball do the work!
Once you’ve learned how to activate your postural muscles we can use Theraband tubing to strengthen and help keep you pain-free. We love this external rotation exercise to engage those postural muscles and work that rotator cuff!
Standing tall, holding resistance tubing in each hand with arms pointing directly forwards, elbows bent at 90 degrees and close to the body.
Keeping you wrists firm, smoothly pull tubing straight outwards stopping before any pain is felt. Return smoothly to starting position.
Start with one set of 10 and add another if you’re still feeling good.
Let us know if you have problems or give us a call at the clinic!