Shoulder warm up/ stretches
The last two video’s I put out focused on core strength, lower back health and posture. I want to switch gears a little bit and go over a few shoulder warm up exercises and stretches that have been helpful for to perform before exercising my shoulders to get them ready and improve my shoulder mobility. By getting our shoulders more mobile we also improve our posture and take pressure that may be transferring into our lower back. Say your doing an over head shoulder press but your shoulders are to tight to be able to press the dumbbells directly over your head while keeping a straight back, most people will compensate by extending at there lower back. Over time this puts a lot of wear on your lower back and can lead to some serious problems. Another big problem from tight shoulder is impingement. There is a gap between in our glumehemroal joint between the arm and socket and the roof of the shoulder where tendons run through. When your shoulders are tight, usually accompanied by dominant anterior deltoids verse your a posterior deltoids shoulder round forward, closing that gap cause those tendons to get pinched. Having heathy shoulders is amazingly important. See what you can get done when your shoulder is in great pain and barely works. VERY LITTLE, I’ve been there.
Warm up 1: Arm circles- Start with your arms raised to your sides level with your shoulders. With your fingertips up make small circles forward at a good pace. For the sake of time in this video I didn’t do the amount of reps I do or would suggest you to do. A good place to start is 20 circles. Once you have done 20 forward switch directions and do 20 more. After that we are going to make the circles larger and now with our fingers pointed down and repeat the same thing, 20 circles forward 20 backwards. Pretty easy shoulder warm up but you will be surprised how much it kicks in. Adjust the amount of circles in each direction accordingly to your level of strength.
warm up 2: Rotator cuff rotations- With a 2.5 to 5 pound plate start with your arms/elbows at your sides and your forearms extended forward at a 90 degree angle from your elbow. With your elbow pressed close to your side you are going to externally rotate your arms out as far as you can without putting strain on your shoulder and without lifting your elbow away from your side. Then internally rotate your arms back in so that your hands and plates meet in the center of your body. It is important to keep your elbow/arm close to your side. If you’re rotating your arms out to a point to where your arm lifts off your side you have gone to far. re adjust and go just far enough to where it stays snug to your body. I do 30 reps in this position but adjust that to your level of strength. This is not warm up that your pushing the limits. Its a warm up, keep it on the mellow side. We’re warming up your rotator cuff muscles and not working them out. If you drain your rotator cuff muscles out too much in your warm up they may not have the strength when you need them in your shoulder workout. Injuries can come of that. In the second piece of this workout you are going to raise your arms up so that your elbow’s are level with your shoulder. Again keeping the same angle at the elbow, at 90 degrees. With your arm and elbow at level with your shoulder and your forearm/ hand directly above, lower the plates (internally rotate) till they are level with your elbow. Then bring them back up. Like the first piece of this workout repeat as many times you are comfortable with. I do 30 reps in both pieces of this warm up.
Warm up/stretch 3: Shoulder dowel stretch- In these next few parts we are going to move into shoulder stretches. For this first stretch you are going to need any kind of a stick or dowel. Starting with your hands down out from your sides holding onto the stick. With your core tight and back straight, fighting to not extend at your lower back raise your arms up over your head. With your hands positioned on the dowel at just the distance to where you are unable to rotate your arms over and behind your head. With your arms above your head, core tight and back straight hold the position. After a about 10 seconds of holding that position, lower the dowel and repeat around 5-10 times.
For the description of the next two stretches please visit my blog at