Let’s break it down:
Plank to pike on ball
Shoulder stability… Planking requires a stable everything, as does a pike, so let’s do both. Alternating between the two replicates the need for dynamic stability during motion. Using a ball at the feet allows us to transition between plank and pike relatively easily.
Just a few pointers:
- Start in plank, make sure you’re stable, then move into a pike.
- Transition between the positions slowly to allow for better control.
- Hold at the end of each position, this is where we actually build strength and stability.
- While in pike, your arms and torso should form a vertical line. This builds strength and stability at end range which is crucial for healthy shoulder function.
EASTS bar rotations
Internal and external rotations at the arm are often neglected with training, but are crucial to maintaining a strong functioning shoulder. This is done by recruiting the renowned rotator cuff muscles that are responsible for both moving and stabilising the shoulder. So technically we’re still strengthening stabilisers, but training them as mobilisers. Trust me, this works.
What to look out for:
- The resistance used will dictate whether this is a strength or a mobility exercise. Just using a stick as we’ve shown gears it for mobility. For strength just add weight.
- These are small muscles, if you choose the strength path start with small increments in weight.
- In either case aim for a full range of motion, the bar should touch your torso on the down stroke, and the back of your palms should touch the wall behind on the up stroke.
- Don’t despair should you fall short of that range, remember consistency and persistence in training gets results.
- It bears repeating these are relatively small muscles, add weight wisely. There’s no shame in small weights.
Kettle bell row to overhead press
In true osteopathic fashion we’re bring it together with the whole body. This pull-twist-push-return movement places the shoulder through all the motions we’d expect from a healthy shoulder, even the rotations we covered with the EASTs bar movements. Being a single arm movement will also challenge the stabilizers we’ve trained in piking…and the entire trunk/core!
Keep in mind:
- Kettle bells take some getting used to. The flip during a grip change will take some coordination so be sure to start light and increase weights only when you’re familiar with the movement. Your forearms will thank you.
- If you don’t have access to a kettle bell (or you just don’t like them) then a dumbbell is fine.
- As with our pikes, the overhead press should see the arm and torso form a straight line, but given that we’re using a kettle bell the weight is slightly offset. So long as the centre of gravity of the kettle bell forms that straight line you’re fine.
- At no point should you have the kettle bell directly over your head.
- Again, start small and add weight wisely.
Upping the challenge
For the plank-to-pike movement, simply slowing down the movements will add difficulty. Incrementally lower the tempo during transitions, and hold the end positions for longer.
For the weighted moves simply just add weight. As always do this sensibly and make sure the movements are performed well before increasing your resistance.
To find out more about how to better treat and rehabilitate your specific shoulder pain, please call 03 8370 3044 or book online to see one of our Osteopaths; click here.
Want to know more?
You can learn more about our approach to shoulder pain and improving shoulder function by checking out blogs in the MOH shoulder series;
For more information, ideas and exercises check out our Health Tips blog.