Sometimes your shoulders can’t get overhead because the underside of your arms, primarily your triceps, lats, and rotators can get stiff and prevent your ability to get overhead or maintain a quality overhead position. This is another mobility activity that will help you recover from overuse and underuse issues. Equipment needed: A jumpstretch band, or a belt or anything you can tie your elbows together with, and a stick, this can be anything from an overhead squat training tool, a broom stick, or even a duster, just ensure that it is sturdy enough to withstand the force you are putting onto it. And something to lean against like a weight bench, box, or anything ~ 24 inches off the ground.
1. Apply your jumpstretch band or other device to your elbows. Two twist with a jum
pstretch band is appropriate, we aren’t trying to get your elbows together there should be some space between them, about a fist width is fine but this is not an exact measurement.
2. Now get into a position where your elbows are on your work surface (weight bench in the video’s case) and find your broom stick or whatever you’re using and grab it with both hands. Now keeping one hand securely on the stick slide your other hand as far away from the other hand while staying on the stick. You should bring your non-moving hand toward you and you moving hand away to create an angle where you can move. Now wind back up keeping your hands where they are on the stick and the stick to even in front of you. Your hands should make the outline of a very wide bottomed V.
3. Now lean forward into this mobility activity by bringing your chest forward trying to obtain a straight line from your elbows, through your shoulders, to your hips. If you don’t get there that is fine, this is your work area. When you have a strong stretch under your arms you’ve made it.
4. When you have the strong stretch add long inhales and exhales. Breathe in through your nose and aim for at least 8 seconds on your exhales. Exhales can be through your nose or mouth whichever you find more therapeutic. Each time you exhale, try to sink deeper, get your muscles to lengthen. You may want to rest you head on the band between your elbows to help relax your upper back and make sinking into this easier. Repeat this 5 times, then back out of this.
This is a very intense activity and if you need to pause get out of the position and reset please do so. This should NOT feel sharp, if you find yourself unable to breathe you are pushing too much, simply back off and reset. If your body tells you that something is wrong with this, trust your body, reset and try again. Avoid discomfort on the front side of your shoulder, this can be overcome back resetting, and focusing on making the stretching occur under your arm instead of on top. Do this before activity if you’re feeling tight and want to be able to nail your overhead position. This works on your shoulder rotators in a way that you probably aren’t getting after.