Baseball pitchers, football linemen, and swimmers know firsthand the importance of healthy shoulders. If any of the small muscles that work together to keep the joint in place and protected get hurt or misaligned, they could end up with a sidelining injury. Shoulder pain is less threatening to non-athletes, but can still throw off one’s day-to-day, especially if range of motion has been compromised. Suddenly, reaching for an item on the top shelf, putting on your jacket or picking up your toddler sends a wincing pinch to the area. This could be a sign that your rotator cuff, which consists of four muscles (supraspinatus, infraspinatus, teres minor, and subscapularis), might be out of whack.
To ease shoulder pain as well as reduce future aches, try this strengthening sequence from Sonima.com’s alignment expert Pete Egoscue, the creator of the Egoscue Method for pain-free living. Start with a static extension stretch to reposition your shoulder blades. From there, perform hand and leg lifts with a synchronized motion to help restore the body’s natural balance and range of motion. Ease into a counter stretch position and hang. Reset your spine with cats and dogs before continuing onto a series of arm circles. Next, perform a sitting floor twist on each side to remind your body how to rebalance itself. Lastly, complete three sets of hero squats , which are great for both your shoulders and (added bonus!) your abs.
By Pete Egoscue