The Best Swimmer’s Shoulder Stretches to Increase Your Range of Motion

swimmer's shoulder stretching

Do you love swimming but hate how tight your shoulders feel after a few laps? Well, you’re not alone. Swimming is a great workout for the entire body, but it can often leave our muscles feeling tight and sore. In this blog post, we will discuss some of the best shoulder stretches for swimmers. These stretches will help increase your range of motion and make swimming more enjoyable!

Define Swimmer’s Shoulder Stretching

Define Swimmer's Shoulder Stretching

Swimmer’s shoulder stretching refers to a group of exercises that are intended to stretch the muscles and connective tissues around the shoulder. These exercises can help to improve the range of motion and flexibility in the shoulder, which can be beneficial for swimmers and other overhead athletes.

  • The condition is also referred to as swimmer’s syndrome, swimmer’s shoulder syndrome, or rotator cuff tendinosis of the shoulder.
  • Swimmer’s shoulder often affects the rotator cuff muscles and tendons. These muscles and tendons attach the shoulder blade to the upper arm bone and help lift the arm. The condition is seen more often in competitive swimmers than in recreational swimmers.
  • Swimmer’s shoulder is a type of overuse injury. It is a common condition that can be caused by repetitive overhead motions of the arm, such as those often used in swimming.
  • These motions can put stress on the rotator cuff muscles and tendons, leading to inflammation and microtears.

What Are The Best Swimmer’s Shoulder Stretches?

What Are The Best Swimmer's Shoulder Stretches?

There are best swimmer shoulder stretches. They are as follows:

Doorway stretch

Stand in a doorway with your elbows bent and hands on the door frame at about shoulder height. Step forward with one foot and lean your body forward until you feel a stretch in the front of your shoulders and chest. Hold for 30 seconds and then switch sides.

Sleeper stretch

Lie on your side with your affected arm straight out in front of you. Use your other hand to grab your arm just above the elbow and gently pull it across your body until you feel a stretch in the back of your shoulder. Hold for 30 seconds and then repeat on the other side.

Cross-body stretch

Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart and reach one arm across your chest. Use the opposite hand to grab the elbow of the raised arm and pull it in until you feel a stretch in the front of your shoulder. Hold for 30 seconds and then repeat on the other side.

Shoulder press

Start with your arms in a 90-degree position and your palms facing forward. Press your hands together in front of you until you feel a stretch in your shoulders and chest. Hold for 30 seconds and then release.

External Rotation with a Band

Attach a band to a sturdy object at about shoulder height. Grasp the band with your affected arm and position your elbow at 90 degrees. Keeping your elbow at your side, rotate your arm out until you feel a stretch in the back of your shoulder. Hold for 30 seconds and then repeat on the other side.

Internal Rotation with a Band

Attach a band to a sturdy object at about shoulder height. Grasp the band with your affected arm and position your elbow at 90 degrees. Keeping your elbow at your side, rotate your arm in until you feel a stretch in the front of your shoulder. Hold for 30 seconds and then repeat on the other side.

Seated Forward Bend

Sit on the floor with your legs straight out in front of you. Reach your arms overhead and interlace your fingers. As you exhale, slowly lean forward from your hips until you feel a stretch in the back of your shoulders and upper back. Hold for 30 seconds and then release.

Child’s Pose

Start on all fours with your knees directly under your hips and your hands just in front of your shoulders. As you exhale, slowly sit back on your heels and stretch your arms out in front of you. Rest your forehead on the floor and breathe deeply for 30 seconds.

Doorway Chest Stretch

Stand in a doorway with your elbows bent and hands on the door frame at about shoulder height. Step forward with one foot and lean your body forward until you feel a stretch in the front of your shoulders and chest. Hold for 30 seconds and then switch sides.

Seated Twist

Sit on the floor with your legs crossed in front of you. Reach your arms overhead and interlace your fingers. As you exhale, twist your torso to the right and then to the left. Repeat 10 times on each side.

Neck Release

Sit or stand with your shoulders relaxed and down. Gently tilt your head to the right until you feel a stretch in the left side of your neck. Hold for 30 seconds and then repeat on the other side.

Superman

Lie face down on the floor with your arms and legs outstretched. As you inhale, slowly lift your arms, chest, and legs off the floor. Hold for a few seconds and then lower back down. Repeat 10 times.

Side Plank

Lie on your side with your legs straight and prop yourself up on your elbow. Lift your hips off the floor until your body is in a straight line from head to toe. Hold for 30 seconds and then repeat on the other side.

Wall Press

Start by standing with your back flat against a wall and your feet shoulder-width apart. Place your palms on the wall at about shoulder height. Press your palms into the wall as you lean forward, keeping your back straight and your core engaged. You should feel a stretch in your shoulders and upper back. Hold for 30 seconds to one minute, then release.

Pec Stretch

This stretch targets the chest and front of the shoulders. Start by standing in a doorway with your arms raised to form a 90-degree angle at the elbows, hands resting on either side of the door frame. Lean forward until you feel a stretch in your chest and shoulders. Hold for 30 seconds to one minute, then release.

These are just a few of the many stretches that can help increase your range of motion and prevent the swimmer’s shoulder.

What Are The Benefits Of Swimmer’s Shoulder Stretching?

There are various benefits of swimmer’s shoulder stretching. They are as follows:

Increases the range of motion in your shoulder joint: When you perform these stretches regularly, it will increase the range of motion in your shoulder joint. This is important for swimmers because having a greater range of motion gives you more power when you are swimming.

Reduces the risk of shoulder injuries: Shoulder injuries are very common among swimmers. By stretching your shoulder muscles, you will be able to reduce the risk of these injuries.

Improves your swimming performance: When your shoulder muscles are more flexible, it will allow you to swim with better technique. This can lead to improved swimming performance. For example, if you have a good range of motion in your shoulders, you will be able to execute the breaststroke kick properly.

Relieves shoulder pain and stiffness: If you are experiencing pain or stiffness in your shoulders, these stretches can help to relieve it. This is due to the fact that they will increase blood flow to the area and stretch out the muscles.

Recover from a shoulder injury faster: If you have recently suffered a shoulder injury, these stretches can help you recover from it faster. This is because they will increase blood flow to the area and help to stretch out the muscles.

Swimmer’s shoulder stretching is a great way to improve your shoulder range of motion and prevent injuries. By doing these stretches regularly, you will see a decrease in your shoulder pain and stiffness and an increase in your swimming performance.

If you are experiencing pain in your shoulders, it is important to consult with a doctor or physical therapist to ensure that you are doing the stretches correctly.

Precautions Taken While Stretching

There are various precautions while doing stretches. These are as follows:

1. First of all, do a proper warm-up before starting your stretching routine. A light jog or jumping jacks are good options to get your muscles warmed up.

2. Always stretch both sides evenly to maintain body symmetry.

3. Don’t push your limits too much and only stretch to a comfortable level. You should never feel pain while stretching.

4. Hold each stretch for at least 20-30 seconds to give your muscles enough time to relax.

5. Breathe normally while stretching and avoid holding your breath.

Swimmer’s shoulder is also seen in other overhead athletes, such as baseball pitchers and weightlifters. The condition can also be caused by a single traumatic event, such as a fall on an outstretched arm.

Swimmer’s shoulder is usually seen in athletes between the ages of 20 and 40. The condition is more common in men than in women.

Swimmer’s shoulder often causes pain and weakness in the affected arm. The pain is typically worse with activity and may be aggravated by cold weather.

Conclusion

It may be concluded that a swimmer’s shoulder stretching is an effective means of increasing one’s range of motion. Furthermore, it may also be beneficial for improving one’s swimming performance and overall musculoskeletal health. However, it is important to note that stretching should be performed properly in order to avoid injury. As such, it is recommended that those who are new to stretching or have any medical concerns consult with a qualified healthcare professional before starting any stretching routine.

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