As you go about your workout program, one area of your body that is especially prone to injury is your shoulder joint. Due to the fact this joint moves through such an extensive range of motion and in so many different directions, it is quite easy to find yourself in pain as your workouts progress.
Fortunately, it does not have to be this way, however. If you take a few safety precautions, you can ensure you don’t wind up with sore shoulders a week or two into your workout approach.
Let’s look at the three biggest tips to help keep your shoulders strong and healthy…
1. Work On Your Rotator Cuff Muscles. Often the primary reason why people experience shoulder related pain is they haven’t been focusing on their rotator cuff muscles. These tiny muscles are not ones you can see, but they will play a substantial role in determining how quickly you wind up injured. Think of them as the stabilizers – the muscles that keep everything in tact.
To strengthen these muscles, you will want to hold a lightweight dumbbell, 2 to 5 pounds is usually sufficient, and then lay on your side on the floor or the couch. Lock your elbow into the side of your body and bend your elbow so the hand holding the weight is pointing straight up towards the ceiling.
Now slowly rotate the weight, lowering it down until it is parallel to the floor. Pause and then rotate upwards again to complete the rep. Continue in this manner until all reps have been completed.
2. Never Neglect Your Warm-Up. Next, you will also want to ensure you never neglect your warm-up. Take five to ten minutes before doing any upper body exercises to warm-up your shoulder muscles. Only when you feel warm and, like your tendons and ligaments, are easily mobile should you begin to lift heavier weights,
If you try to lift when you are cold, there’s an excellent chance that you will rip or tear something.
3. Plan Your Workout Carefully. Finally, last but not least, plan your workout carefully. Remember your shoulder muscles will be worked whenever you are doing chest exercises, shoulder exercises, and even your arm exercises. As such, try not to put these days back to back or your shoulders will get insufficient rest in between.