Let’s briefly cover tips for proper alignment of the shoulders, elbows and wrists when arms are reaching overhead. You’ll also get to know the movements of the scapula, learning how to add external rotation of the humerus/arm bone to create more space, reducing the risk of impingement. You’ll practice moving the clavicle, scapula and humerus as one which will dramatically decrease your risk of injury.
Did you know the cue of pull the shoulders back and down doesn’t always apply when holding our bodies up? Here’s a general rule to follow:
Start all movements from neutral scapula and if your HANDS are at or BELOW head height, pull the scapula back and down as you lift the body.
If the HANDS are OVER the head, allow the scapula to lift up with the clavicle and arm bone as you hold the body. Forcefully pulling the scapula/shoulders back and down before raising the arms over head can cause shoulder impingement. Meaning the ball (end of the arm bone) runs into the top of the socket and rubs against the rotator cuff tendons. So when reaching overhead, let your scapula rise too, then engage your shoulder and back muscles!