When the upper trapezius takes over, the shoulder blade scapula hikes up instead of rotating, thus driving the humeral head into the subacromial space See image above.
Start with your hands clasped in front of your chest with palms facing back. Turn your palms outwards as you lift your arms overhead. Straighten your elbows when your arms are over your head and reach up with ribs and shoulders. Return to the start and because this shoulder stretch has an asymmetrical hand position, switch the interlock of your fingers.
For this over the head shoulder stretch reach an arm overhead with the elbow straight. Grab the forearm with the other hand. Pull the straight arm out to the side to stretch the shoulder of the grabbing hand. Then pull the straight arm inwards to stretch its shoulder. For both of these actions keep your neck feeling long and your chest open. This actually applies for most shoulder stretches. For both variations, gradually resist the stretch so that your arms feel like they are working against each other.
Since the arms are already overhead you can use this opportunity to stretch your triceps. Grab the bent elbow of one arm and pull it inwards. To vary the stretch and exercise the external rotation muscles of the arm being stretched try to rotate the arm being stretched so that the forearm is more rearwards. This isn't so much a shoulder stretch as it is an activation exercise.
With elbows straight and wrists crossed, pull your arms outwards against each other. You'll be exercising the trapezius. This type of exercise can be helpful for shoulder flexibility since you are practicing muscle control near the limits of most peoples range of motion.
Work at smoothly pulling outwards then smoothly relaxing. This shoulder stretch looks a little like a choke hold. Start with one arm out to the side but slightly forwards and with its elbow straight.
Grab onto the upper arm with the other hand. Then pull the straight arm back. You'll be stretching the rear of the shoulder of the bent arm. You'll also be exercising the straight arm. You may find that your pectoralis major cramps up in this stretch. You may find it helpful to focus on spreading your shoulder blades. Seller assumes all responsibility for this listing. See all condition definitions - opens in a new window or tab Read more about the condition.
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Use your arm strength and grip to lighten the load of your head. This pose opens the chest, neck, and shoulders, increases flexibility in the back, strengthens the arms and legs, stimulates internal organs, and stretches out the abdominals. As you inhale, kick your ankles into your palms and send your heart forward. Flex your feet to relieve any sensitivity in the knee.
Come out of this posture slowly and cautiously. Lie down flat on your back and slide your hands, palms facing down, under the torso. Touch your thumbs together. Extend your legs onto the floor, feet together. Inhale as you press down through your elbows, lift your heart to the sky, and roll the crown of the head onto the floor. Try to maintain most of the weight of your head in your elbows and forearms, not the crown of the head.
When you come out of the pose, press through the elbows, lift your heart to the sky, and tuck your chin. Slide the back of head on to the floor. Join over , members and reach your personal goals together with the world's best teachers.
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