7 Exercises to Stabilize and Strengthen the Shoulder


August 03, 2018

Shoulder Pain Causes

As many as 67% of people experience shoulder discomfort at some point over the course of their lives.  Shoulder pain often originates from shoulder injuries. Sometimes it can be simply caused by chronic use from strenuous activities like sports. Those who are active, from sports, or even just active chores around the house, often make excessive, repetitive and, sometime, overhead motions that place a lot of stress and pressure on the shoulder, including the surrounding muscles and soft tissues.

Individuals know they have some kind of shoulder pain once they start feeling stiffness, soreness or tenderness within their shoulder. Mobility of the shoulder can become impaired. Some lose strength in the joint, making it difficult for them to complete normal activities as simple as lifting or move around their arm.

It’s important to take action in your daily life to relieve pain and protect yourself from future damage. Stability in the shoulder builds a strong base to solidify shoulder movement and protect against unneeded stress.

 

What You Can Do

Here are some simple exercises that can be done at home to improve your shoulder stability and overall posture. The best thing about it, they only take a few minutes and can be done without weights. If you have rotator cuff injuries, a shoulder impingement, frozen shoulder, or simply need to strengthen your back, these exercises are for you.

There are two ways to tackle each exercise:

1) Do 3 sets of 10 reps rule.

2) Repeat until until you lose proper form.

 

Internal Rotation

Who It’s For: For those with rotator cuff injury or a shoulder that feels “frozen,” particularly with forward motions, in need of strengthening

Internal Rotation Shoulder ExerciseHow to Do It: Put a spacer, such as a rolled hand towel between your ribs and your elbow. Once the spacer is firmly in place, simply move your arm towards your body keeping that spacer in place. Move in a counterclockwise motion with your thumb pointed up towards the ceiling. When moving the arm, do not move your shoulder. For extra cueing, try in front of a mirror and use your opposite hand, touch your shoulder to keep it from moving.

The Benefit: Improve confidence in forward facing exercise and use, along with better feel and range of motion

 

External Rotation exercise

Who It’s For: Those who have a “slouching” posture, a bread-and-butter exercise addressing most rotator cuff issues

External rotation exercise for shoulderHow to Do It: Put a spacer, such as a rolled hand towel between your ribs and your elbow. Once the spacer is firmly in place, simply move your arm away from your body keeping the spacer in place. Move in a clockwise motion with your thumb pointed up towards the ceiling. During this motion, do not move your shoulder.

The Benefit: This exercise is effective and beneficial to safely increase range of motion and strengthen the rotator cuff.


Lateral Raises

Who It’s For: For those experiencing a dull aching pain in the shoulder area, especially when doing a lot of overhead motions.

Lateral rotation exercises for shoulderHow to Do It:  Engage the back by pinching your shoulder blades together. Then with your hands starting from your hips, move your arms toward the sky ending in a T shape. The motion will mimic having wings.

The Benefit: The exercise is beneficial to strengthen the back, improving range of motion and strength.

 

Anterior Shoulder Raises

Who It’s For:  If you have tight, limited range of motion, this simple strength exercise opens the back and shoulders at the same time.

Anterior shoulder raise exercisesHow to Do It:  Chest up. With your hands together and thumbs pointed up, move your arms towards the sky ending your hands as high as possible while keeping your shoulder blades together.

The Benefit: This exercise is beneficial for enhancing shoulder stability, enabling your body to build a strong base for shoulder movement.


Standing Lateral Scap Pinches (“T’s”)

Who It’s For: Feeling weak? This team favorite exercise is great for general strengthening of the shoulder joint area, including general posture realignment.

Standing lateral scapula pinchesHow to Do It:  Chest up. Start with your pinkys touching and your thumbs pointing outward. Try to keep the shoulder blades pinched together the entire time. Separate your hands as far as possible and keeping your elbows locked in. Try not to hike up those shoulders! That is a no no for this exercise.

The Benefit: This exercise increases range of motion, strengthens the rotator cuff, ultimately building a strong foundation around the joint for optimal stability during movements.

 

Serratus Push Ups

Who It’s For:  For shoulders that feel loose, in need of confidence, or to build as stronger base for support.

Serratus push upsHow to Do It:  Palms against the wall as if a regular pushup. Lock your elbows. Squeeze your shoulder blades together. Then push up.

The Benefit:  Relieve pressure on the rotator cuff to prevent potential stress and chronic wear and tear; this promotes increased stability.


Wall Angels

Who It’s For: For those with limited range of motion in your back or general rotation of the shoulder.

How to Do It:  Have entire back flat against the wall. Elbows against the wall as well as the back of your hand against the wall. In that position move your arms up as high as possible without breaking that position and then move your arms as low as possible with your arms in that same position. 

The Benefit: This exercise will increase range of motion in your arms and shoulders while strengthening your rotator cuff as well as other posterior muscle groups in your back.

 

 

Stabilization Support

Want to reinforce the benefits of these exercises all the time? Take all these routines to the next level with something your body can use all the time…without having to change anything you consciously do. Stabilizing the shoulder is the most consistent way to protect the joint from injury and optimize strength and performance. Positioning in proper alignment allows your body sensors to get the muscle “biofeedback” it needs to operate the joint in optimal fashion.

 

 

AlignMed Posture Shirt with Zipper allows for easier access for those with shoulder issuesThe Alignmed Posture Shirt is designed to provide the body natural biofeedback to set posture, and shoulder position properly. Neuroband technology activates the proper muscle groups, and without the brain even having to think about it, the body learns how to use correct shoulder position, reversing forward shoulder, and other bad habits, all on its own.

Learn more about how the AlignMed Posture Shirt can help stabilize your shoulder, and protect against possible pain, injury, stiffness or flexibility limitations.

 

Explore Posture Shirts

 

 




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