Got a new guest article for you today. This comes from Mike Fitch an up and comer here online with his new site Global Bodyweight Training. Mike is a student of mine, ex-model, avid bodyweight trainer, and can do some amazing stuff. He also has great quality videos that make me jealous. This article and the video focuses on keeping the shoulders healthy and strong.
No matter what the style of training that you prefer, I think it’s pretty safe to say that both increased strength and power can significantly improve your efforts. Whether it is strong man training, bodyweight training or good ole fashion body building, a nagging injury or pain can throw a serious wrench in the progress. So why are these common aches or pains so often overlooked or worked around?
I’d venture to say that most athletes simply don’t know what to do about it, and most doctors aren’t invested enough to lay out a solid pre or post rehab program without referring out. Usually it’s not until your arm’s ripped from its socket that there is significant attention paid to the area. It’s more of an afterthought than a priority.
But what if I told you that your potential strength and power is seriously hindered if there is an injury that is constantly overlooked. Think of it this way, the body is always more interested in self-preservation than any thing else. So if you’re nervous system sees a dysfunction at a joint, it will actually “turn down” the amount of power going through that joint, as an effort to protect it, even if your ego thinks otherwise. So if you have some sort of pain in your shoulder, you’ll never really reach your full potential when attempting to bench press that compact car.
From my experience, unless you actually have an “impact’ related injury like a car accident or a bone crushing tackle, the majority of injuries that I see are simply imbalance issues that are made worse by repeatedly pushing resistance through an unstable joint. Without correcting the imbalance.
Just by spending a fourth of the time you would be spending on your normal resistance training, you can make an enormous difference. I’ve seen chronic pains totally disappear in less than six weeks or last a life time when ignored. Your choice.
This video is a sample of a shoulder health program that is geared towards an A/C joint impingement or front shoulder pain (which happens to be one of the most common cases I see with my clients).
All of the exercises, stretches and activations in the video with exception of one, use only body weight as resistance. (A 8-12 lb Kettlebell, Dumbbell or jug can be used for the pendulum swing)
A couple of tips to add the video suggestions into your program:
1. Start doing a 2:1 ratio of Pull exercises to Push exercises. A lot of times impingement issues are caused by an overdevelopment of anterior muscles and underdevelopment of posterior muscles.
2. Stand up straight! Forward shoulder roll not only makes you look like an ape, but also closes down the A/C joint as well shortens the internal rotators at the shoulder joint.
3. Start performing this shoulder health program as a warm up before any Pushing or Pressing workout.
Mike Fitch is the creator of the Global Bodyweight Training system. You can get a taste of it by signing up on his site where you’ll receive a free video on 25 Pushup Variations for Total Chest Development. Also be sure to check out the World is Our Playground section to see bodyweight training and more in Miami, Costa Rica and many more locations around the world.