This is the final part of the 4 shoulder shapes we should all be able to achieve. Creating these shapes provides more efficient transitions when under load, making it easier and posing less risk to the shoulder.
So we’ve opened up the over head, front rack and hang shape. The last position is a press. Think of so many positions, bench press, rowing, burpee, chest to bar pull up, muscle up, ring dip….. If we create a poor, unstable position from this point it will make the movement much more difficult.
With the press we need to achieve full shoulder extension without the elbows flaring. Rarely do we get full extension in the shoulder. Even when sat at a desk typing were put in a perfect opportunity to hold the press position, but we get too flexed through the spine and the keyboard is placed to far away.
The other movement is internal rotation, which was part of our hang position. Good internal rotation at the shoulder will stop the elbows from flaring.
The last part being the lack of mobility of our lower cervical and upper thoracic spine. Which when stiff takes us into a rounded shoulder position. Trying to mobilise this area will help improve shoulder and head position.
Below are a series of mobility exercises to help with these directions.
Barbell hold – With the bar racked up to shoulder level and secure in the rack. Reach back with both hands, hold onto the bar and gentle lean forwards till you feel a stretch in the front of the chest and shoulders. Hold for 2 minutes. Gradually work your hands closer together.
Peanut lower cervical – This one you’ll have to get hold of a peanut (two lacrosse balls stuck together). Place the peanut at the base of the neck. Lift the hips to the ceiling. Some gentle rocking or arm movements through flexion or behind the back will help mobilise this point. 2 minutes
Lats smash with LaX ball – Take the ball under the arm pit into the meaty portion at the back, which is your lats. Roll into the lats with the arm in over head position lying on your side. 2 minutes.
Band hold – The other alternative to the bar hold is a band hold. Same position but hold the band behind you. Hold the stretch for 2 minutes.