Have you ever put your arms overhead for something and realized how sticky they felt?
Or have you been in yoga class and dropped into Down Dog, only to realize that yours looks nothing like everyone else’s?
It’s time to blast through those roadblocks with this simple sequence you can do that will make your overhead flexibility the envy of every yogi and lifter out there.
But first, have you heard? We’ve got the Healthy Shoulders 10 Day Challenge coming up, where I’m going to share my sticky solution to help you increase that overhead flexibility in less than 10 minutes a day. You get the full system I use with clients, daily coaching, a 3 week Kickstarter Plan so you know what to do after the challenge is over…and so much more. You can get all the details and sign up before it fills up at Healthy-Shoulders.com.
Alright, you ready to get into today’s coaching? Let’s roll!
WHY IS OVERHEAD FLEXIBILITY IMPORTANT?
Our shoulders have the most movement potential of any joint in the human body.
When you lack this overhead flexibility though, you’re going to inevitably compensate in other areas of your body, especially the lower back and your neck.
And not only will overhead activities become limited and compensations start, but things like bench pressing or rowing will be compromised, so it’s not just the action of going overhead that’s affected.
If you love to do anything with your upper body, whether it’s swimming, golfing, throwing, or weight training you need to have adequate flexibility in your shoulder, particularly overhead.
WHY DO WE LOSE OVERHEAD FLEXIBILITY?
Our bodies sometimes feel complicated (and they are), but when it comes to losing movement ability we once had, it all comes down to the saying,”If you don’t use it, you lose it.”
For example, if you stop putting your arms overhead, you’ll eventually lose the ability get your arms up. And over time, that range gets smaller and smaller.
The reason this happens is because as we stop getting into that overhead position, tighter, thicker, less elastic tissue builds up inside the shoulder capsule, limiting your movement.
So when you try to get into Down Dog to stretch, or lift weight up into an overhead press, you’ll feel like you’ve hit a roadblock (not to mention pain, pinching and tightness).
WHAT YOUR CURRENT ROUTINE IS MISSING
I know, I know, you spend so much time stretching and stretching trying to make your overhead flexibility better. Nobody is calling you lazy, however, you’re missing one small, but oh-so-important piece to the flexibility puzzle.
The missing piece is that you must not only stretch, but also strengthen your tissue! And no, i’m not talking about going and doing traditional lifting right after you stretch, but actually strengthening the tissue while your stretching.
Science has shown that if you hold a stretch for 2 minutes, you get a temporary increase in range of motion. The key word there is temporary.
After about 90 minutes that new range of motion disappears and is lost forever (so dramatic I know!). But if you strengthen the tissues while they’re being stretched, you get to keep some of it. That’s where the gains are made.
10X YOUR DOWN DOG - & YOUR FLEXIBILITY
In today’s coaching, I’m going to put a spin on a fan favorite, Down Dog, that many of us turn to, to increase our overhead flexibility.
Down Dog on its own is a great way to get you into that stretched overhead position but without that strengthening component, you’re not reaping the full rewards of what’s possible.
To do that, we’re going to perform some isometric contractions (muscle contractions where muscles and joints don’t actually move, but are contracting) while in Down Dog. Something magical happens when we do this.
In a nutshell, you’re bringing life back to that tight, inelastic tissue and those annoying roadblocks go away!
KEEP MAKING PROGRESS
If you enjoyed today’s coaching and want the full system to increase your overhead flexibility, not to mention relieve pain, then join me for the Healthy Shoulders 10 Day Challenge. It’s time to make lasting change and I’ll show you how. Just go to Healthy-Shoulders.com to learn more.
ABOUT COACH MATT PIPPIN
Matt is a Strength and Mobility Coach with over 15 years experience in his field and has coached over a thousand professional, collegiate and everyday athletes with the goal to help them move, feel and perform at their highest level. He's incredibly passionate about bringing simple and effective online mobility training programs to everyone who wants to take control of their self care and make lasting change. CLICK HERE to learn more.
NSCA Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist
Level 3: Fascial Stretch Specialist
Level 1: Institute of Motion Health Coach
Certified FRC Mobility Specialist (FRCms)
Level 1 Kinstretch Instructor
Weck Method Qualified