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Video:Stretches to Reduce and Prevent Shoulder Pain

with Leslie Nesbitt

Learn these quick and easy moves to lessen the stress and pain in your shoulders and to help prevent shoulder injury.See Transcript

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Transcript:Stretches to Reduce and Prevent Shoulder Pain

Hi, I'm Leslie Nesbit for About.com Health.

Shoulder Pain Origins


Many times, with working out and stress in our jobs and in life our shoulders become very tight. So I want to show you 2 shoulder openers. These are moves that you definitely want to do when your body is warm and move slowly as you come in and out of them.

Positioning your Shoulder Stretches


So let's get started with the first one. Sitting nice and tall, you can be seated on a chair for this one or you can be seated on the floor. We're going to extend the arm up, with the arm and ear are close to each other if not touching.

Increasing your Stretch to Reduce Shoulder Pain


As you bend the arm back, take the other arm and assist with getting that elbow a little higher to the ceiling. The fingertips are touching the middle of the back. I'm going to turn around and show you what I mean.

Fingertips are here. Now, take that other arm and circle it way back so you're preparing for this move. Now many times we can come to here or even to here. You can grab onto some clothing if you need to. If your fingertips come together that's great- clasp, hold, sit tall for 4 to 5 breaths.

Shoulder Stretch Alternatives


You can also take a towel and as you lift up that top arm, drop the towel back, lining up with the spine. Then the other arm can come behind, grab the towel, and if you want to you can walk those fingertips up a little bit. If that's too intense you can drop down and lessen the intensity of this shoulder opener.

Of course, you want to do it on both sides, so you'll just repeat on the other side, reaching that arm. Remember in these stretches, preparation is 90% so don't cut that part short.

Now we're going to come up to a standing position and I'm going to show you a second, standing shoulder-opener that's also going to stretch the legs.

Upper Body Stretch to Reduce Shoulder Pain


So take the fingertips, rolling those shoulders back, we're going to interlace the hands, just behind the lower back, and as you start to fold forward, the hands lift up and over, as though you're trying to reach those hands over the head.

You can wiggle a little bit in this position. You may need to bend the knees a little bit for more flexibility, or as you get more flexible straighten the knees. Just work on reaching up, out, and over with those hands. Definitely come up nice and slow and then if you want to, you can shake it out.

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