June 19, 2024

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a Healthy Lifestyle for a Better Future


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Mobility training is having a main character moment and continues to remain in the wellness spotlight thanks to its major rewards (hint: it improves your range of motion, limits joint pain, and prevents injury). While training your overall mobility will help you function at your peak, you can also target specific areas of the body that may need a little TLC. Today’s mobility lesson plan: shoulders.

“Mobility is the ability to actively move a joint through a complete range of motion, ideally without pain and with ease of movement and coordination,” says Colette Nguyen, CPT, a certified personal trainer and trainer at Soho Strength Lab. “Having adequate mobility allows you to move your body as desired with relative comfort and efficiency.”

Meet the expert: Colette Nguyen, CPT, is an ACE-certified personal trainer and trainer at Soho Strength Lab.

Imagine performing everyday movements like showering, putting your hair in a ponytail, getting dressed, and reaching for groceries off a high shelf with total ease. That’s a sign of good shoulder mobility.

“The best cocktail for mobile shoulders includes a combination of soft tissue work, dynamic movement, isometric holds in various positions, and loaded movements to strengthen healthy shoulder movement and shoulder stability,” says Nguyen.

That’s because the shoulder is a complex system that involves multiple bones, joints, muscles, tendons, and ligaments. These all work together to allow you to perform your go-to movements in and out of the gym, according to Nguyen.

Mobility is not the same as flexibility or stability, but they are all connected. Flexibility is the ability of soft tissue to passively lengthen and for your body to achieve a certain position which requires no strength, coordination, or stability, explains Nguyen. Stability, on the other hand, is the ability of a joint to maintain control during a movement or positioning and it implies a joint being able to resist unwanted movement, she adds.

Now you may be wondering, does stretching help with mobility? Yes and no. “Static stretching is used to train flexibility, not mobility,” says Nguyen. “Having adequate flexibility may enhance your mobility.”

No matter what your starting point, you can improve your shoulder mobility with these effective exercises, recommended by Nguyen. Keep in mind that change doesn’t happen overnight. It takes time to see progress depending on your current ability and overall wellness, says Nguyen. You should see improved range of motion within four weeks of consistent mobility work.

11 Best Shoulder Mobility Exercises

Whether your shoulder range of motion is extremely limited, or your joints feel smooth and well-oiled, try these 11 exercises for an efficient (the whole routine will only take 10 minutes!) routine to improve your shoulder mobility, programmed by Nguyen.

Mobility work can be done any time of the day that fits with your schedule, and *at least* three times a week to see progress, Nguyen. “It can serve as a warm-up, a cooldown, or a maintenance routine on your rest days. You could also do it first thing

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