No doubt about it: You call on your shoulders a lot to help you get things done, and we don’t just mean in the gym doing push-ups and presses. Even regular, everyday activities, such as carrying bags of heavy groceries to the car or vacuuming under the sofa can lead to strains and sometimes, chronic pains.

If you’re one of many avid trainers that suffer from persistent shoulder problems (those sharp pains you feel when you attempt an overhead press, pull-up or bench press), or you just want to avoid doing any serious damage down the road, it may be time to put your ego to the side and focus on some rehab. Take a break from the heavy weights on your delt training day, and instead, incorporate these exercises from our sports chiropractor, Dr. James Ho, DC, BHSc, to start you on the road to recovery.

WHAT TO DO: Perform the following routine 3-4 times per week. Apply moderate heat to the injured shoulder for 12-15 minutes beforehand.

DB External RotationWith Press: Lie on your good side holding a weight in the opposite hand with your elbow tight to your side, and bent at 90 degrees. Slowly rotate your forearm away from your body. Pause, then extend your arm straight upward. Reverse the move slowly and with control. Do 2 sets of 15 reps.


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Blackburn (T, Y, W): Lie face down on a flat bench and perform the following movements: First, raise your arms out to 90 degrees to make a “T” shape with your body. Turn your thumbs downwards. Next, move your arms above you to form a “Y” shape (thumbs up, then down). Now, bend your elbows to make a “W” shape with your arms (thumbs up). Hold each position for 5 seconds. Do 10 rounds.

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Rear Cable Fly:  Holding light dumbbells down and in front of you, hinge forward at the hips. Keep your torso stationary as you raise your arms out to the sides, palms facing down, squeezing your shoulder blades together. Hold, then slowly lower and repeat. Complete 3 sets of 15 reps.


Static Triceps Dip Stretch: Lower yourself down to the bottom of a triceps dip. At the bottom, you’ll feel a deep stretch at the front and top of the shoulder. Hold for 10 seconds. Repeat 3 times.


Biceps Wall Stretch: Extend your arm and place your palm flat on a wall. Rotate your chest away from the wall until you feel a stretch along the biceps. Hold for 10 seconds. Repeat 3 times.

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