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Try This to Relieve Shoulder Stiffness

Mar 11, 2024 | Upper Body

Are you constantly battling shoulder stiffness and discomfort?

If so, you’re not alone.

Many of us experience shoulder stiffness from factors like poor posture, lack of mobility, or muscle weakness.

Keep reading to learn one simple yet effective exercise that can help alleviate shoulder stiffness and improve mobility.

What Causes Shoulder Stiffness?

Shoulder stiffness can often be attributed to a lack of mobility in the upper back, also known as the thoracic spine. It can also come from weakness in the shoulder blades.

An arm swing, also known as the TP Core exercise, targets these areas, helping to build strength and enhance flexibility, ultimately leading to reduced discomfort and improved shoulder function.

How to Perform an Arm Swing

The arm swing is a dynamic movement that engages the muscles surrounding the shoulder blades and upper back while promoting mobility in these areas.

Here’s how to perform it:

  • Start by standing with your feet hip-width apart and one arm outstretched, palm facing up
  • Pivot on your back foot and bring your arm behind you as far as you can comfortably
  • Swing your arm back in front of you and switch so your palm is facing down
  • Bring your arm across your body
  • Continue this fluid motion, making sure to pivot on your toes and rotate from your hips, not your spine
  • Complete 10 repetitions per side for two to three sets

If you’d like more of a challenge, complete the arm swing as detailed above, but hold a hand weight.

If standing to do an arm swing is challenging, you can complete it while sitting.

Incorporating arm swings into your routine can have significant benefits for relieving shoulder stiffness and improving overall shoulder health.

Consistency is key, so aim to perform this exercise a few times a week for optimal results.

Want to learn more ways to relieve shoulder pain?

Our 2024 YMCA Wellness Series class, “Exercising with Shoulder Pain,” aired on Tuesday, April 2nd at 7:00PM. This Physical and Occupational Therapist-led class helps you build upper back and shoulder strength and improve your shoulder health.

Click below to watch the replay: