This article is part of the mini-series 7 Joints in 7 Days: A video mini-course to help you knock out joint stiffness in less than 10 minutes a day.
Do you deal with a stiff shoulder – or both shoulders? Stretching may help, but stretches designed for muscles instead of the underlying joint might not hit the right spots.
Your arm is connected to your body via a freely moveable ball-and-socket type shoulder joint. While this freedom is good for your life and work demands, it’s risky for the shoulder when things go wrong.
Shoulder joint stiffness is common in people who perform heavy upper body workouts or manual labor, especially with your arms overhead. Stiffness is also familiar to people who have had shoulder surgery in the past, who have suffered a falling injury with their arm outstretched, or who have been diagnosed with arthritis.
Shoulder stiffness can be tricky compared to other joints of the body. Often there is hidden stiffness in the upper back, which requires the shoulder joint to work harder to reach your arm where you want it to go.
If you’ve tried other flexibility exercises without luck, giving some attention to the joints in your shoulder AND your upper back may do the trick. Joint mobility exercises lubricate and increase blood flow, and can help you alleviate stiffness in under 10 minutes a day.
Check out the videos below from our 7 Joints in 7 Days video mini-course. Try the Thoracic Series of exercises first and notice how easy or difficult they are for you to perform. Then, try the Shoulder Series video. We recommend that you do both videos daily for at least ten days and see if you notice less stiffness.
If the exercises cause pain, or if your stiffness seemed related in time with other symptoms such as fever or illness, seek the advice of a qualified healthcare professional.
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