Most injuries and shoulder pain that I’ve encountered with clients at the gym is due to muscular imbalances and bad posture that pulls bones out of alignment, causing excessive wear on joints and connective tissue.
More often than not, these issues can be greatly improved simply by strengthening the muscles that are too weak, stretching and relaxing the muscles that are too jacked up and mobilizing the joints in between.
You can easily do this yourself. The trick is knowing which muscles to do what to.
That’s why I put together this Shoulder Overhaul Series for you with the most common fixes I’ve used over the years, both for myself and my clients.
With so much time spent reading, working on a computer or texting these days, many people have developed a hyper-kyphotic (hunched back) posture. And you don’t have to look like Quasimodo for it to cause shoulder impingement syndrome.
Take the self-assessment at the beginning of the post to determine if this may be an issue for you to address.
We’ve all seen the guy at the gym with the exaggerated version of this posture. All he does is bench, bench and bench and his shoulders are pulled forward because of it. But things don’t have to be this bad for it to give you problems.
Most of us spend so much of our day working or driving with our arms reaching in front of us, that even if you do just as many rows as you do presses (and this rarely happens), it still throws your shoulders out of balance.
And if you like to sleep on your side, you’re spending most of the night with your shoulder jammed forward. This adds up and it is exactly what caused my shoulder pain for over 15 years. This is how I fix it.
When I was younger, my bench press not only sucked but hurt my shoulders.
Then one day a fellow trainer persuaded me to change up my technique and go with more of a power lifter’s set-up.
Immediately, my shoulder pain diminished. As soon as I got used to the new body positioning, my weights increased too.
Here’s how to figure out your strongest bench press hand position.
Once you’ve improved your posture, and addressed some basic muscle imbalances, it’s time to put it all together with shoulder stability work.
These exercises help to reinforce all the other work you’ve done in the Shoulder Overhaul Series.
To learn more about keeping your shoulders healthy so you can get the most out of you training, subscribe to the mailing list.