If you ranked the most common injuries from 1-100, shoulder injuries probably wouldn't rack the top 10, but among active and sports people, shoulder injuries are prevalent. In fact, shoulders are the single most common injury that I treat across all 3 clinics that I work at.
The reason is this: on the gradient between mobility and stability, shoulders are VERY mobile (more than 180-degrees in all planes of motion!), but not stable at all. The stability of a shoulder depends very much on the muscles around the shoulder - muscles which we often neglect.
Most shoulder stability programs will prescribe some weighted rows and some small isolation movements with a 1kg weight. It's useful but BORING!
In this blog, I'm going to introduce 3 fun ways to strengthen your shoulder girdle to prevent shoulder injury.
1. Rowing Machine
The reason most back exercises are based on a rowing movement is that rowing works to strengthen the back! You don't have to add a heavy weight and count to 10 - just put on your favourite music, and jump on the rower for 30min.
If you want to build up isometric strength as well as concentric strength (and you should), then try this exercise add-on.
When we think of yoga, we tend to think about flexibility, not strength, but yoga is all about building isometric strength. As you move through poses, and hold those poses against gravity and against the movement of your breath, all of your posture muscles, including those muscles around the shoulder girdle, with strengthen.
If you're interested in learning more about yoga, you can check out some of my colleagues' yoga classes at KĀYA Health Clubs HERE.
Regardless of what stroke you use, the action of pulling against the resistance of water will build the strength and size of your back and shoulder girdle muscles. Don't believe me? Look at Michael Phelps' shoulders!
For more information on shoulder injuries, email me directly via the contact page. For specific information on an injury you have, or for treatment, contact one of my clinics directly. You can find that information here.
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Dr Mitch Clark