The shoulder was designed for mobility, and it buys it with a relative lack of stability. Indeed, it dangles quite precariously off of the body. Thomas Myers writes beautifully about it in his article, “Pivotal Places: Help For Problem Shoulders.”
The shoulder is particularly vulnerable to injury. After an injury, the surrounding soft tissues will “splint,” or stiffen, in an effort to protect and stabilize the region. This can work quite brilliantly in the acute stages, but in the long run it can lead to a loss of range of motion.
A simple and effective excercise for relaxing the muscles around the shouldder joint and for regaining range of motion in the shoulder is the “Codman’s Pendulum.” I find it also provides a gentle traction and realignment of “jammed up” feeling shoulders. Here are a few helpful links to get you started:
There are a wide variety of shoulder injuries and dysfunctions, of course. If you have any, it’s always best to get an examination and diagnosis from a medical professional.
3 May 2011