Week 3! How are your shoulders feeling? Are you stretching daily? Couple times a week? Keep it up! This weeks shoulder stretch will take you through the shoulder’s range of motion from front to back. Again, this is a pretty straight forward stretch. I don’t recommend this stretch for people that have any shoulder injuries where it hurts to bring the arms above the head.
You will need a strap, belt, or a piece of rope, as well as a folded blanket or cushion to sit on. I don’t recommend standing for this pose because you want the spine to stay straight. If you can’t get all the way down to the floor to sit, sit in a chair that has no arms on it. A stool would better than a chair, if you have one.
How to do the Shoulder Stretch:
- Sit comfortably on a cushion or folded blanket, high enough so that the knees are a little lower then the hips.
- Grab your strap and bring it chest height. Place your hands on the strap wider than your shoulders, as shown in the top left photo.
- Begin with the strap at chest height, inhale and bring the arms up over the head. Then as you exhale, bring the arms down the back as far as they will go.
- Take another inhale and bring the arms back up over the head. And as you exhale bring the arms back down in front of the chest, as shown in the top right photo.
- Two things to remember here:
- Try not to bend the arms as you bring them down the back and back up over the head. The greater the distance between your hands on the strap, the easier the stretch will be.
- Don’t lean forward as you bring the arms down the back as shown in the bottom photo. You want the spine to stay straight, with your head, shoulders, and hips in line. This will bring optimal stretching to the chest and bicep area.
Do 5-10 rotations, or more if you like!
Tip: after every few rounds, try to bring the hands a little closer. This will deepen the stretch.