Shoulder strength is so important, yet so many people do not train their shoulders properly. Common exercises such as bench press, pushups, and shoulder raises are simple and easy to perform, but what about the rest of your shoulder?
Your shoulder is actually a very complex ball and socket joint that has lots of muscles both in the front and back. Most often, folks train what they can see, and only focus on the front shoulder muscles such as the pecs, biceps, and anterior deltoids. As physical therapists, we regularly see this develop into pain at the front of the shoulder, or soreness with reaching overhead. Once pain sets in, what do people do? They often AVOID the movement, and the shoulder starts to get weaker! Now we have a weak, painful shoulder on our hands, which can take time to improve and recover from.
We advocate for building strength at both the front AND back of the shoulder. Your rotator cuff muscles, mid back muscles (mid and lower traps, rhomboids, lats), and neck muscles all work together to keep the shoulder balanced. Working in exercise to train the back of the shoulder helps to keep you working out and feeling good, and away from the frozen bag of peas that you always search for after workouts.
But why should I focus on shoulder strength? Glad you asked. Shoulder strength is critical to be able to pick up your kids without wincing in pain. Shoulder strength is necessary to carry in your heavy grocery bags. Want to look good at the beach? You can bet that strong shoulders will look great in those summer pictures. Best of all? Strong shoulders are healthy shoulders, and help to keep you feeling your best during workouts
Work in strengthening exercise for the back of the shoulder and watch the results speak for themselves. We advocate for training the back of the shoulder MORE than the front of the shoulder to keep muscles feeling great. Need some help finding the right exercises to work in? Head over to www.catalyzeperformance.com and snag our free Total Shoulder Performance E-Book to help improve your shoulder strength.
Train Hard. Train Healthy.
Ryan and Joe
Ryan Cullen and Joe Villecco
Co-Founders, Catalyze Performance
FB: Catalyze Performance