Free your Shoulders and Upper Back with these Stretches

Larissa Iron Yogi

Swimmers,
cyclists and triathletes are prone to aches and niggles in their necks,
shoulders and upper backs. There can be many causes, but two common ones are
repetitive use injuries, like rotator cuff pain in swimming; and having poor
upper body posture from hours hunched over your handlebars or looking up from
your aerobars.

There are
many ways to stretch and mobilise your upper body to release tension and
mobilise stiffness in the shoulders, chest and upper back. I’ve chosen these
movements because they form a sequence that’s easy to remember, and together
they can help to improve your breathing function, as they actively involve your
respiratory muscles.

Some of the
arm positions come from traditional standing yoga poses where they form part of
full body poses which also engage the torso and lower limbs. However, for the
purposes of these functional stretches it’s only necessary to focus on the

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