Exercises to Avoid With Shoulder Impingement

Last Updated: November 28, 2020
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Written By:
The Home Gym Review Squad

Shoulder impingement happens when the bursa or tendons of your shoulder are vexed owing to continuous exposure to overhead movements. As you repeatedly move the shoulder tendons, the tendon bones will impinge. This article focuses on the exercises to avoid with shoulder impingement.

Popularly known as swimmer’s shoulder, shoulder impingement is quite common among tennis and baseball players. When the shoulder is overused, you’re going to experience impingement, most of which come with signs such as pain, shoulder weakness, arm pain, and limited motion range.

Want to know the exercises to avoid with shoulder impingement? Read on to find out.

Common Causes of Shoulder Impingement

Shoulder impingement can be triggered by a whole lot of external and internal forces. Listed here are the core causes of the swimmer’s shoulder.

  • Overuse of shoulders and poor posture
  • Acromion bony abnormalities causing narrowing of subacromial space
  • Trauma or mild injuries to your shoulder
  • Osteophyte formation triggered by shoulder joints degeneration
  • Bad shoulder movement patterns commonly triggered by muscle weaknesses and imbalances
  • Engaging in sports such as swimming, golfing, racquet sports, and throwing, which involve repeated overhead movements

Exercises to Prevent Shoulder Impingement

Shoulder impingement causes shoulder discomfort and pain. You can prevent shoulder impingement when you do the following:

  1. Blade squeezes:  hold and pinch the shoulder blades the same way you would to a small ball. Do this for around 5 seconds and ensure you’re doing it several times a day.  Three to five days would be okay.
  2. Pec Stretching: position yourself close to the doorway, while holding the door frame with your hands a short distance from the shoulder height. Move the body away from the arm until when you feel the chest area stretched.  You can do that for 15 seconds, ensuring you repeat it around 5 times a day for some days.
  3. Shoulder stretches:  move your arm forward while holding it straight using your shoulder. Move the shoulder backward, ensuring you move to the furthest point realizable without moving the neck or back or even bending the arm.
  4. Arm stretches: lie down on the uninjured part of your body, ensuring the top arm is resting at 90 degrees.  The elbow should be positioned on the hip and the lower arm rotated in the direction of the ceiling. You should repeat that about 10 to 20 times every day.

Exercises to Avoid With Shoulder Impingement 

We all fall on the same page when the issue of injuries and work out is concerned. It’s never someone’s wish to be held back by injuries such as shoulder impingement when doing their favorite exercises to build muscles, lose fat, or optimize their gym work success. 

If you happen to notice that you’re experiencing shoulder pinch, don’t stop working but avoid exercises that pinch the shoulders and increase your shoulder movements. For a smooth healing process and quick transition to your desired body shape and look, avoid these upper-body movements and exercises.

Ball upright row exercise

The benefits of ball upright row machines to your upper-body are well-known and documented. Sadly, when you fall short of essential workout facilitators such as fully functional and uninjured rotator cuff and shoulder muscles, you would rather avoid this exercise.

Upright row exercise and shoulder impingement are never compatible. That is because the mechanics of upright row exercise doesn’t line well with ailing shoulder muscles and rotator cuff. 

Upright row exercise machine’s internal rotation component pinch the supraspinatus tendons against some bones in your shoulder, and when done for extended periods lead to accidents. You don’t want to acidify an already sour condition, so why don’t you try exercise alternatives that won’t put you in such trying experiences?

Exercises to avoid with shoulder impingement – Behind-the-neck press-ups

Behind-the-neck press is widely popular among bodybuilders and weight trainers. This exercise delivers superior muscle packs when done correctly and could add to your body strength and motion range. 

Unfortunately, the exercise demands extensive motion range, which lacks in most people. For someone with shoulder impingement, it could be impossible to achieve any tangible results.

Talented body trainers will tell you the biggest mistake anyone working out can ever make is to push a large load over their head when they’re struggling to maintain a compatible motion range. Often, it hurts and sensitizes the agitated rotator cuff bursa and tendons, leading to muscle injuries and impingement pain.

Triceps dip

Triceps dip is a rarely appreciated gem in the shoulder muscle exercising domain. These exercises activate and fuel the upper arms’ triceps muscles and the core.  Triceps are widely implemented by different bodybuilders and other workout enthusiasts because of their ability to keep the body balanced and strengthen the triceps. 

Sportsmen whose sports involve pulling and pushing objects usually find this exercise a goldmine because it prepares their body to handle any loads with minimal muscle imbalance and injury issues

We can’t deny the truth that triceps dips strengthen your triceps, shoulders, and chest, but do you also know these exercises put your shoulders at a high shoulder extension state, which demands stronger mobility? 

You already know that shoulder impingement has limited your motion range, and trying to strain it harder than required would result in more pain and discomfort.

If the unfortunate happens and you’ve to deal with shoulder impingement, while working out, you should never add triceps dips to the equation because it would not only worsen the situation but also delay your workout goals.

You could also read about upper body workouts with shoulder injury.

Exercises to Avoid With Shoulder Impingement – Conclusion

The motive for every exercise is to gear the handler towards achieving their workout goals, and of course, without causing lots of strain and problems to their health. If an exercise has to exempt any of these qualities, it should be exempted if the issue of safety and performance is of uttermost concern.

The exercises to avoid with shoulder impingement are fewer than the ones to add to your workout. That’s perhaps because shoulder impingement can be controlled as long as you avoid exercises that require more overhead motion and strain the shoulder muscles. 

Don’t put yourself into the risks and temptations when you can delete some exercises out of the equation and make your workout more successful.

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