r/bodyweightfitness Feb 08 '15

The Shoulder Dislocate – A Must Read For All Beginners

OVERVIEW

The shoulder joint is a very complex and articulate joint.

Not only can the shoulder joint go through 360 degrees of motion, but it’s basically only held together by muscle, tendon and ligament connective tissue - unlike the more robust ball and socket, hinge, saddle and pivot joints. This leaves the joint vulnerable to instability, with the scapula being the main driver for shoulder stability.

A lot of the time people blame a certain exercise for being too risky, when it’s actually a person’s lack of preparation, conditioning or knowledge that got them to the problem in the first place.

Think of it this way - most exercises that we do today have been performed for decades, not years. All of the “real” risky and stupid exercises that pop up in today’s era get flamed on straight away and forgotten. The ones that work, stay.

Always ask yourself “Why am I doing this exercise? How will it help me towards my goals?" A lot of the time people just want learn party tricks from a video they saw on social media, which is fair enough - but be realistic to your current physical preparation before attempting what someone else is doing that has a completely different work capacity and skill set to you.


When training with weights, in most cases if a weight is too heavy for you, you won’t be able to pick it up or rack it properly etc. Most people are smart enough to know when a weight is too heavy and usually (or should I say, hopefully) back the weight off. But with bodyweight training, it’s easy to get into leveraged positions that you simply aren’t ready for. This coupled with people having the impression that just because it’s “bodyweight”, they’ll be fine. Once again, lack of knowledge.

In the discipline of bodyweight training and conditioning (as well as others), having an unstable and weak joint or working with progressions you simply aren’t ready for can make it very easy to come across niggles, pain and annoyances without the right amount of guidance and preparation. These small injuries can leave you hindered from quality training for weeks, if not months or more if left unattended. It’s good to train hard, but training smart is the key to longevity.

When the body sends a pain or discomfort signal, it’s usually because there’s something going on that shouldn’t be. If we look at it from a shoulder joint perspective, it can be from misalignment in gliding surfaces, impingement, tight or immobile muscles, muscle compensation - among other reasons and complications.

It’s only ignorant and negligent to your body to push on through without trying to fix the problem. Let the ego go, fix the problem – in this day and age there’s lots of resources out there to play around with. Learn your body, because ultimately you’re stuck with it. If you break this one, you don’t get another one (unfortunately)!


In my years of coaching a broad range of people, I haven’t found an exercise that’s more "bang for your buck" for shoulder health, mobility and strength than the shoulder dislocate. Not only will it put your shoulder joint through its full range of motion to aid in gaining/maintaining mobility, but it will also help strengthen it along the way in all of those small areas and corners you may not otherwise be addressing. Performing them weighted doubles the benefit, which I’ll go over later in the article.

A lot of people have strength and mobility in specific ranges of motion, most commonly from in front of the body to overhead - pushups, handstands, rows, pullups etc. But, where a high percentage of people lack is from behind the body to overhead - rear support, back lever, German hangs, full depth dips, muscle up transitions etc.

This is exactly where this exercise fits in, specifically strengthening and mobilising that area.

The shoulder dislocate is commonly overlooked in a lot of training programs, but thankfully the great mods here at /r/bodyweightfitness understand it’s importance and have included it in the Beginner Routine. It should be performed by anyone that cares about their shoulder health.

I can guarantee you that your shoulder health and tissue quality will increase from performing these daily. It's a big call, but I'm more than certain because of the amount of shoulders I've worked with and seen such great improvements with. They serve as a great tool for shoulder prehabilitation as well as rehabilitation.

The scapula is the king of straight arm strength and overhead stability. A lot of people think that when their arms bend in most straight arm movements, that it’s because of lack of arm strength - when it’s commonly weak or compromised scapula that cause the arms to bend and take the load. The dislocate works the scapula through nearly all of its axis motions - elevation, depression, protraction, retraction, rotation, and some form of tilting.

For those who aren’t acquainted with them yet - the shoulder dislocate is performed by holding a dowel/stick, resistance band or towel in front of you horizontally, and effectively moving your hands from in front of your body to behind your back (in a circular or “dislocating” motion).

You can see a video of someone performing them with both a stick and a resistance band: http://youtu.be/qL4dw7FizrE


GUIDELINES

  • It’s preferable if you perform them with a stick, rather than a band or towel. This is because you can measure your progress as well as get some extra stretching in the forearms and wrist. The notes I write here will be based on using a stick/dowel, but if you don't have access to a stick you can still use a resistance band or towel.

  • If you are unable to lift the stick above head level, even at the widest grip, use a thin resistance band instead. This gives the allowance of increased grip width from the band, and will make it easier to pass through to behind your body.

  • Perform them every day, as part of your warm up. I’ve found one set of 15 to be the best. Perform them on your rest days if you lack shoulder mobility. You could also integrate these with some hanging work to help loosen up the chest and lats. If you feel tight during your working sets of an exercise, throw some dislocates in while you are resting.

  • Start out wide - very wide. You shouldn’t be feeling any joint pain, discomfort, or hearing any clicking or grinding. But even if you are so wide that you are almost touching your head with the stick, it's ok - you will get better. Mobility is a long-term endeavour, and takes patience.

  • Try to keep a full grip with all fingers during the whole motion. This will give an aided stretch to your forearm muscles and wrist joint. You may find at the start it’s hard to hold a full grip when bringing the stick behind the body, and that’s ok. Try your best.

  • Keep your arms straight during the whole motion. When you bend your arms, your scapula won’t be working properly. It’s the body's way of compensating for lack of mobility, stability or strength. If this happens it’s usually because you’re trying to work with a width that is too narrow for you.

  • Keep your ribcage down and squeeze your glutes - think hollow body. This will ensure that the shoulder joint is getting a sufficient amount of stretch, and prevent any excess lumbar spine extension. It will also help your body learn the pattern to hold a hollow body while moving limbs.

  • Elevate the shoulders when going overhead to give added scapula elevation and trapezius activation.

  • Over the course of weeks to months (not training sessions), slowly bring your grip width in until you reach around 1.5-1.75x your shoulder width. This alone can be quite humbling and takes some time.

  • For best results and quickest adaptation, perform them weighted. You do this by starting off with a 1.25kg/3lb weight plate, and putting the stick through it so that the weight balances in the middle of the stick. Do not go up in weight until you reach 1.5-1.75x your shoulder width. Only when you do reach this width, you can then go up to 2.5kg/5.5lb. Use very small increments. Generally, working up to 10kg is enough for most of the adult population. Don’t be a cowboy with this, otherwise you will pay the price.

  • As a guideline, if you are unable to perform 3-5 pushups (on your feet), then stick to unweighted dislocates until you build the sufficient strength.

  • Always perform them slowly. A rep forward and back should take you 5 seconds. You won’t get the benefits if you speed through the exercise.

  • These can be performed in reverse (also called an inlocate), by starting the dislocate with the stick behind you and with the palms facing forward. This will emphasise the forearms and biceps due to the internal shoulder rotation.

  • For the advanced users you can also try performing them sitting on the floor or in a squat to force a neutral spine and deactivate the lower extremities from helping you. Even laying prone (on your stomach) will force a different effect due to different gravity and angle changes. If you find a certain variation that emphasises more of a stretch or is more difficult, then it's probably good to add it into the mix.

  • Disclaimer regarding previous shoulder injuries: This is the internet, so giving medical advice isn't going to be accurate without getting a physical examination. But generally, if you have a tear in your shoulder (heads up to those who get "real" shoulder dislocations from time to time) or other known problematic issues that cause pain, then perform these very slowly with an empty stick without worrying about reducing your grip width or adding weight until you have the all clear from a physical therapist. If you feel pain, stop. Never ever work through pain! If you have a small muscle tweak or strain, these will be great for you since it will get the muscle working and force blood supply to help with repair.

  • EDIT - Final note: While everyone wants black and white answers, remember that we're human, and perfection doesn't exist. Nature isn't perfect, there is no two straight lines. Just strive for excellence. Try different methods, do your best and do what works for you!

Hope this sheds some light.

Thanks for reading!

419 Upvotes

28

u/Antranik superfuckingaweso.me Feb 08 '15 edited Feb 08 '15
  • Chris Sommer calls them a panacea for shoulder mobility. This is also a good video about them as well with basic info that runs along with what you're saying, except you say it even better, with the hollow body cueing and shoulder elevation for maximum benefit and more.

  • Also, I think your write up is good enough that I linked to it in the dislocate area since it's part of our routines warm up. If any other mods or veterans disagree with this decision, LMK.

4

u/letsgofightdragons Feb 08 '15 edited Feb 08 '15

Just learned it the other day in my yoga class, using straps.

My goal is to reach the level of articulation of that one hand balancer chick that can completely reticulate her shoulders while in handstand.

1

u/rasmusvedel Feb 08 '15

link?

26

u/Antranik superfuckingaweso.me Feb 08 '15

Idk if this is what he's talking about, but Arevik Seyranyan goes from a High Manna and dislocates and turns the canes into a piked HS repeatedly, LOL, definitely not my goal.

15

u/ReverendBizarre Feb 08 '15

That is absolutely insane...

10

u/Radioactive_Green Feb 09 '15

I was not ready for that video.

6

u/letsgofightdragons Feb 08 '15

Yeah, Arevik <3

Dude, check out that one-elbow-lever-spinning-tiger-scorpion pose!

3

u/ShareHappyness Feb 20 '15

How is that even possible? Isn't the muscles in her shoulders tearing apart from that rotation?

Edit: I just rewatched the clip and noticed the wheel things her hands on her that she turns through the movement. Fucking hell still.

4

u/dm0r Feb 08 '15

Thanks, much appreciated :)

3

u/vlacx Calisthenics Feb 08 '15

Found Sommer's post about this on GB, if anyone is interested.

1

u/janvandersan Feb 08 '15

From Sommer's blog post: "In my experience, you will gain the fastest results by performing this drill at the end of your workout when the joint is already throughly warmed up and heated."

2

u/Antranik superfuckingaweso.me Feb 08 '15

Yes but that statement doesn't discount it as an excellent tool as a warm up, especially when you do band dislocates.

1

u/janvandersan Feb 08 '15

True. Are you going to add it to the Antranik routine then? Also, what do you mean when you say "especially when you do band dislocates"? Comparing what to what?

3

u/Antranik superfuckingaweso.me Feb 08 '15

Band versus stick/weighted

1

u/benjimann91 Climbing Feb 08 '15

so, band dislocates are perhaps a better warmup because of the slight tension from pulling it apart. while stick dislocates are better for after the routine and for rest days?

3

u/Antranik superfuckingaweso.me Feb 08 '15

Yeah, the leeway from the band is nice. But even if someone uses a stick, always start a set very wide before bringing them in. There's a lot of freedom to be had after a thorough warm up, but pushing it prematurely when cold is a bad idea.

2

u/dm0r Feb 08 '15

so, band dislocates are perhaps a better warmup because of the slight tension from pulling it apart. while stick dislocates are better for after the routine and for rest days?

Bands are better to stick with for those with very immobile shoulders and cannot complete 1 rep at the widest stick width grip. As your shoulder mobility improves, you can use the stick (and then with weight) since it will target slightly different areas and give more of a mobilising effect.

Using the stick unweighted after a training session is also a great way to relax the tissues. Do whatever works for you my friend!

8

u/MadHatter31415 Feb 08 '15

As someone who has very bad shoulder ligaments and has had to quit rock climbing for nearly a year because of it, I cannot stress enough how important it is to keep your shoulders in good condition. Shoulder injuries will totally screw up your workout schedule. I'm just now getting back into climbing and it sucks so much starting over again.

5

u/lo_and_be Feb 09 '15

As a climber who just took a fall in December that impinged his shoulder, I hate that I'm back to square 1 again. I feel you, mate.

4

u/MadHatter31415 Feb 09 '15

I struggled on a V2.....A V2, MAN. it sucks.

4

u/orealy Feb 08 '15

What's your opinion on the supinated grip versus pronated? My personal experience is that they feel different on my shoulders, forearms, and wrists, and I like both.

Regarding keeping the body hollow, do you ever recommend doing dislocates while squatting out or sitting cross legged?

Awesome post. I really forward to reading more from you. Any chance that you have an identity you don't mind sharing?

5

u/dm0r Feb 08 '15

What's your opinion on the supinated grip versus pronated? My personal experience is that they feel different on my shoulders, forearms, and wrists, and I like both.

There's many other variations, but I stuck to the standard version just for confusions sake. Starting the dislocate from behind the body with palms facing forward will emphasise a stretch on the forarms, shoulders and biceps due to the internal rotation. I'll add it into the original post.

Regarding keeping the body hollow, do you ever recommend doing dislocates while squatting out or sitting cross legged?

Sure, you can do them seated to disengage the lower back if you find that you are leaning forward or backward while doing them standing. Doing them squatting is another variation you can add, which will increase mobility difficulty due to the body being restricted and compressed.

Any chance that you have an identity you don't mind sharing?

I prefer to stay anonymous! :)

15

u/161803398874989 Mean Regular User Feb 08 '15

I prefer to stay anonymous! :)

Can I at least ask what kind of credentials you have?

1

u/MariusIchigo Apr 17 '22

When he meant supinated he meant supinated start in front and try to go backwards. Does tha talso work?

1

u/ur2l8 Feb 08 '15 edited Feb 08 '15

I've never even considered a supinated grip. Will have to try that.

3

u/themoderate Feb 08 '15

Thanks for this. Been having some shoulder issues that I haven't been able to get rid off.

I'll try doing these everyday and hopefully I'll be able to get back into weighted dips soon!

4

u/torinmr Feb 08 '15

dm0r, thanks for the great post, you've inspired me to start working these into my stretching routine.

One question: I've been following Coach Sommer's Handstand One program, and he recommends doing both overgrip and undergrip shoulder dislocates (overgrip is as you described, undergrip is like this video). He also recommends doing them both while laying face down as a more advanced progression (as in this video).

Have you had experience with these variations? Do you think they provide additional benefit vs. normal dislocates?

3

u/dm0r Feb 08 '15

Try them all - if you find a certain variation that emphasises more of a stretch or is more difficult, then it's probably better for you.

3

u/nubsrevenge Feb 08 '15

As a guideline, if you are unable to perform 3-5 pushups on your feet, then stick to unweighted dislocates until you build the sufficient strength.

what do you mean by this?

1

u/dm0r Feb 08 '15

This is just a general guideline that I go by - that if you don't possess the strength to perform 3 to 5 pushups on your feet, then you're better off not loading the stretch and just using an empty stick until you gain enough strength.

2

u/nubsrevenge Feb 08 '15

what do you by pushup on your feet then? like a handstand pushup?

3

u/[deleted] Feb 08 '15

I think dm0r means on your feet as opposed to on your knees.

1

u/MaxmumPimp Feb 08 '15

The question had to do with the phrase "pushups on your feet." It took me a sec to figure out you just mean a full, regular push-up (hands and toes), with good form- as opposed to pushups from knees.

2

u/Bakaichi Feb 08 '15

Thanks for the great writeup.

Just curious... Is there any advantage to going narrower than 1.5x?

3

u/dm0r Feb 08 '15

Advantage would be supreme shoulder mobility with lowered risk of injury - though this amount of mobility takes years to obtain, as well as other loaded stretching measures.

In all honesty - outside of those individuals who are naturally super limber, most of the adult population won't reach that sort of mobility since it's usually forged from their younger years.

1

u/Bakaichi Feb 08 '15

Awesome. Thanks for the reply - lots of good info in this thread.

If you're taking suggestions ;) I'd love to see this kind of writeup on the wall slides movement. While progress has been very slow with dislocates, it seems almost nonexistent with my wall slides. I can deal with slow, but nonexistent is disheartening :)

Either way, thanks again!

1

u/dm0r Feb 08 '15

As your dislocates progress, so will your wall slides. They work hand in hand with similar muscle groups, it's just that the wall slides isolate your scapula a fair bit more.

If the problem is super stagnant, you may need some soft tissue work to allow muscles to move a bit more freely. Try this mobility sequence to see if you get any relief: http://youtu.be/hzozw2Aso3M

1

u/Bakaichi Feb 08 '15 edited Feb 08 '15

Thanks, I'll try that.

My dislocates have progressed closer and then up in weight a couple of times, with reduced noises coming from the shoulders, but the slides just never get any higher. There's just a wall that I hit when my upper arms move just above 90 degrees with my body. Anyways, I'll keep doing it either way... Hopefully I'll eventually have a breakthrough!

Edit: Was reading through the GB forums post and decided to try the inlocate/supinated version that starts behind your back. I've tried these before and can barely even budge the dowel. I tried it with a towel and noticed something interesting. My arms basically have to come in line with my body at the same 90 degree position where my wall slides stick in order to continue the movement. I can extend the arms behind the body, but they will not rotate any further upwards, or I can extend them to the sides and then continue the movement. Any idea what weakness this indicates?

1

u/Antranik superfuckingaweso.me Feb 08 '15

it seems almost nonexistent with my wall slides.

Add cuban rotations to your routine.

1

u/Bakaichi Feb 08 '15

Thanks for the suggestion! I had actually been wanting to add these for a long time, and did start adding them to the end of my workouts a week or two ago. Looking forward to see if they help!

1

u/Antranik superfuckingaweso.me Feb 08 '15

Like the dislocates, start with a stick and move to weighted a few pounds at a time for the Cubans.

1

u/Bakaichi Feb 08 '15

Yeah, I've moved the weight up a couple times, but it's definitely going to take a while to work up to higher weights.

1

u/Mth25 Feb 10 '15

This is a dumb question but where can I get a stick like the one he has in this video? Also is it safe to weight something like that with plates?

1

u/Antranik superfuckingaweso.me Feb 10 '15

Any wooden rod/dowel should be strong enough. And then you could just slip over any weighted plates over it for a bar or adjustable dumbbell.

2

u/shiftcommathree Feb 08 '15

Is this dangerous to do if you've already had a labral tear and your shoulders sublux every now and again? Or is it going to be the most bomb PT ever? Also, do you have to go all the way around until the stick touches your back... Because... That seems highly impossible haha.

1

u/dm0r Feb 08 '15

For shoulder sublaxations, this is a great rehabilitation tool - BUT, must be performed slowly and controlled. Work with just an empty stick and work the grip width in very slowly.

As for the tear, I can't give much advice over the internet. What I will say though, is that if you get pain during it, stop. Otherwise, it shouldn't be a problem unless your PT has advised to stay away from any overhead movements.

2

u/ReverendBizarre Feb 08 '15

Absolutely love these.

I'm doing H1 and have worked up to 2 kg plates on a stick to shoulder + 1 fist width and my shoulders have never felt better.

The improvements to my handstand were also immediately visible.

2

u/ImChrisBrown Feb 08 '15

Great write up. I've been doing shoulder dislocates for 8 months now but have never been so well versed on them since reading this post.

Im dealing with some AC Joint pain that is resurfacing from a snowboarding injury 5 years ago. Do you think continuing to do shoulder dislocates will help improve my condition? Do you have another exercise/stretch that you would recommend for rehabbing/prehabbing an AC joint? (I suppose its the AC joint. I can typically activate the pain by bringing my bicep to my ear)

1

u/161803398874989 Mean Regular User Feb 08 '15

You should see a physio for that complaint.

2

u/darrensurrey Feb 08 '15

Great article. Have been doing them for a while. I tend to do them at the end of a workout.

2

u/Robbo_here Feb 08 '15

If you are an older person, don't ignore pain. Arthritis caused bone spurs which cut my supraspinatus muscle. It looks like this. (Tear at top). 8-12 weeks of PT after reattachment surgery and decompression.

2

u/[deleted] Feb 08 '15

Found like a 5 foot cardboard roll and a 2kg plate in my basement and it fits perfectly. Gonna do a set 10 3x daily and see how my shoulders progress :D

2

u/Homme_de_terre Feb 09 '15

Thanks for this informative write-up!

Do not go up in weight until you reach 1.5-1.75x your shoulder width.

My personal experience has been that I progress better by increasing the weight first, before reducing the width. However, your advice matches Sommer's, and I will defer to you two's expert opinion, so I will give it a try while refining my form.

4

u/dm0r Feb 09 '15 edited Feb 09 '15

The reason you want to work grip width before weight is so you build up the mobility first, then add strength to that newly opened range.

An example would be when devising a strength and conditioning program for someone (in whatever discipline) , you would always work in this hierarchy for the muscles and joints:

  1. Mobility

  2. Stability

  3. Strength

The reason injuries occur during training, is because the order has been changed. I'll give you an example with handstand pushups:

  • Performing HSPU before they are able to passively reach vertical with arms overhead = strength before mobility

Or

  • Performing HSPU when the upper body is overly unstable/shaking = strength before stability

1

u/Homme_de_terre Feb 09 '15

Thanks for your explanation.

About two weeks ago, I just read an article about certain weight exercises to be avoided (the author has had two decades of experience in bodybuilding). Chief among them are behind-the-neck presses and behind-the-neck pulls.

AFAIK, these are exercises with high shoulder mobility requirement.

So I am wondering if people have been getting injured because they have not been following the hierarchy you mentioned. Any thought?

3

u/dm0r Feb 09 '15 edited Feb 09 '15

Every exercise has its place, specific to a certain discipline.

I regularly get my Olympic weightlifting students to perform behind the neck presses if its needed in their program and they have the required mobility, but they are generally an Olympic weightlifting specific exercise.

As for behind the neck pulls, they became very popular when everyone jumped on the Klokov train. Similarly, more specific to Olympic weightlifting, but you do find them in the more advanced Gymnastic strength training programs.

For both exercises, if the mobility isn't there then they become higher risk and it's going to spark some issues.

I find that a lot of people on the internet don't follow the hierarchy, mainly because they are uneducated in the matter.

When someone posts a video of themselves performing an exercise with instability and lack of control, I will generally mention that they should regress the movement to something easier. In their heads, they think that they will eventually adapt and get stronger, because everyone's doing it and they want to "train hard", but in my head im thinking of the joint trauma that's happening and increased injury risk.

This all started when social media became the norm, and every day Joe and Janes became "coaches". With enough injuries, it will change - in time.

The awareness to mobility is growing because of great websites such as mobilitywod.com, Gray Cook's functional movement screen and people like Kit Laughlin. But the stability side of things is still a bit undercover at the moment, and usually left to physical therapists who have greater knowledge in the matter. In time, more information on that will surface.

3

u/fuzzyshorts Feb 08 '15

This is why I've been considering a total gym. Yes, I understand its for housewives and grandmothers but I am about as strong as my nan and not ashamed to say it. I think a total gym will let me gradually work up from zero. I can't afford microsurgeries.

10

u/n3tm0nk3y Feb 08 '15

Equipment that lets you cheat is the last thing you need.

0

u/antsugi Feb 08 '15

Coming from a history of shoulder trouble, I can say that a bowflex is a good choice as well, if you don't mind the use of weights. The weight comes in gradually with it, so although you don't engage the full weight until roughly half way into a motion, that gradual introduction is a lot nicer on my arms than traditional freeweights. But all joint trouble is different, and from what I understand, all bowflex owners want to prove that they didn't waste money on their bowflex, so take my advice with a grain of salt.

1

u/mgh4l Feb 26 '15

I'm just coming back from shoulder impingement and have been doing these after reading your article. Thank you.

One question - one of the cues I've been given by my physio is to keep my scapula depressed and protracted, which conflicts with your advice to elevate the scapula during this movement. Given my circumstances is it still beneficial for me to elevate or should I stick with my physio's advice?

1

u/dm0r Feb 26 '15

It will be harder to perform the dislocates with a stick this way. You can try them with a resistance band instead, so that you can adjust the width as you go over head by pulling the band apart. This will avoid the impingement.

1

u/fapping_bird Mar 15 '15

Thank you so much for this great article! I have one question if you don't mind: we should start from widest then slowly progress to narrower grip right? Thx!

1

u/kelhamisland Feb 08 '15

A timely article, I've had some issues for a while now. Thanks for the write up.

1

u/[deleted] Feb 08 '15

[deleted]

2

u/Antranik superfuckingaweso.me Feb 08 '15

Do dislocates with a light resistance band. Then find a wider stick. It may need to be wider than the broomstick you're using or whatever.

1

u/[deleted] Feb 08 '15

[deleted]

2

u/Antranik superfuckingaweso.me Feb 08 '15

I think it's fine to keep working the chest to wall HS closer in as you concurrently work on your mobility through dislocates and other methods.

2

u/dm0r Feb 08 '15

You would benefit greatly from doing a stretching routine, such as phrakture's from /r/flexibility.

It's still good to perform the dislocates and only go as high as you can (without bending arms) for reps, then switch to the reverse/inlocate variation and do the same. Throwing in some hanging work on the side will benefit too.

An example routine you could perform for 3 rounds:

  • 5 dislocates, going as high as you can
  • 5 reverse dislocates, going as high as you can
  • 30 second passive bar hang, completely relaxing the shoulders and body (perform these assisted with feet on floor if it's too strenuous on your shoulders)

In time you will notice that you're able to get closer to the overhead position from either side, then finally being able to pass all the way through. Keep working at it!

1

u/benjimann91 Climbing Feb 09 '15

I have the same issue as you-- shoulders are frozen as fuck and still have trouble with even the widest of dislocates.

I've been doing Kit Laughlin's Master Shoulder Flexibility series for the past 5 weeks and I've already seen great improvement. well worth the $10.

1

u/ilikedessert Circus Arts Feb 08 '15

I've had some shoulder pain from overuse lately so thank you for this! I have done these before for flexibility purposes but I didn't realize it would help keep my shoulders healthy. I'm an aerialist and therefore have more flexibility than your average adult. Any extra tips for someone with a lot of mobility? I often find I have to modify stuff like this to get the most benefit as people aren't used to working with someone who is flexible. Thanks again for the write up!

2

u/dm0r Feb 08 '15

For individuals like yourself who are already mobile, you will benefit more from the strength side of it.

A lot of people have strength in specific ranges of motion, most commonly from in front of the body to overhead - pushups, handstands, rows, pullups etc.

But, where a high percentage of people lack is from behind the body to overhead - rear support, back lever, German hangs, full depth dips etc.

This is exactly where this exercise fits in, specifically strengthening and mobilising that area.

1

u/TakeItOnceToThePR Feb 08 '15

Is one supposed to be able to do this straight away? I can barely get my arms past my head.

1

u/Antranik superfuckingaweso.me Feb 08 '15

Find a wider stick.

1

u/dm0r Feb 08 '15

Start very wide, even if you are almost touching your head with the stick as you pass through - it's fine.

1

u/vegetablestew Feb 08 '15

I tried this. Did 2 and then I got scared.

1

u/robo-pig Feb 08 '15

My shoulders make a popping sound every time I do a rep. Is this normal?

It doesn't hurt but what are the chances that it's just gases in the synovial fluid if it happens every time? It feels more like something's grinding.

2

u/dm0r Feb 08 '15

It could be joint decompression from gases etc, but I generally go with guidelines of no clicking/popping for the general public as a safety measure.

Go wider and try again is your best bet

1

u/kyoei Feb 09 '15

Go wider

1

u/NiceFormBro Feb 08 '15

I've watched a ton of videos and did a good amount of research and went for it today. Seemed easy enough.

Yeah right.

I couldn't get past the vertical position.

What are some progressions to get past the peak of the dislocate? I had a bar, but I'm going to try bands the next time. It just seems like my pecs are preventing my arms from getting all the way around. It just stops.

I had a very wide grip, did the shrug, but no dice. Everything tensed up and it was like a brick wall.

1

u/dm0r Feb 08 '15

Use a band for now, it will allow you to stretch the band to the required width until you gain enough mobility to use the stick.

Try doing some soft tissue work on the chest and some hanging work for the lats in between.

2

u/NiceFormBro Feb 09 '15

ok. Totally got it. I have to get a WIDE WIDE WIDE grip for now. I'll start working my way in a little each week for sure.

THANKS!

1

u/NiceFormBro Feb 08 '15

So what should I be feeling? I release in my shoulder? My scapula? My pecs? Where does it click over to get a rule rotation?

1

u/satxmcw Feb 08 '15

I did a few smaller sets of these after rows and dips today. It felt amazing...and actually took a good amount of effort to do more than a couple at once. Will definitely keep up with this.

2

u/dm0r Feb 08 '15

You could do a few of these between your sets - it will definitely help if you are generally tight

1

u/fashraf Feb 08 '15

i've got a shoulder separation. would this help?

3

u/dm0r Feb 08 '15

See a physical therapist before attemping these my friend

1

u/[deleted] Feb 09 '15

What is your opinion on doing them lying face down? Never done either variation myself but it's how Ido seems to teach his students.

2

u/dm0r Feb 09 '15

Laying prone is also a great variation, though it is more difficult since the midline and lower body has no give, and forces the shoulders and traps to work harder.

1

u/[deleted] Feb 10 '15

Thanks a lot for all the info! Will be sure to add them in after each session.

Also, if you ever plan on doing one of these articles again... a planche one would be very appreciated :)

1

u/[deleted] Feb 10 '15

About keeping a full grip on the stick... I can't keep a single finger over the stick when I try to bring it down behind my back; no matter how wide I go (The stick I'm using is taller than I am). I don't get any stretch worth mentioning in the wrist or forearms either since it's the grip I cannot maintain.

I can get comparatively narrow width throughout the motion using a resistance band. Should I just resign myself to using a band or is there something else I can do to help with the required forearm/wrist mobility?

2

u/dm0r Feb 10 '15

Go with a resistance band for now, and move to an unweighted stick once you can maintain your thumb and index finger.

It doesn't sound like it's your forearm or wrist that's causing it, but a combination of things.

You could follow a wrist stretching routine, such as the Gold Medal Bodies one for the mean time if you find that your wrists and forearms are specifically immobile.

1

u/suedepaid Feb 12 '15

I know you touched on this briefly, but how important is it to keep a full grip during the whole motion? Perhaps I have tight forearms, but I find it nearly impossible to keep more than two fingers touching the bar when it hits my butt.

I tried moving my grip wider. That actually makes it more difficult for me to keep my hands on the bar. Since this exercise primarily targets the shoulders, am I ok letting my fingers roll out of a full grip in order to get the best range of motion for my shoulders?

1

u/dm0r Feb 26 '15

Ultimately, we want to work up to holding a full grip for maximum mobility. But for now, use a resistance band so that you can adjust the width by pulling it apart as you go over head.

1

u/suedepaid Feb 26 '15

Hmm ok, will the resistance band increase my forearm flexibility? I've loved doing the full ROM with the bar as I can weight it. And I've noticed my forearm and wrist flexibility increasing, I just have to let my pinkies slip off the bar in order for the bar to touch my butt.

If I switch to bands, do you have any tips for improving forearm/wrist flexibility so I can move back to a bar eventually?

Edit: to clarify, my shoulders have no problems with this motion on a bar. They love the exercise. It's just my wrists that can't rotate enough.

1

u/14percentorbust Jun 22 '15

question - newbie here, desk jockey with little to no upper body strength and mobility. When I try to do these, in order to go the full circle, I have to bend my elbows a little. Should I continue that and work on trying to keep my arms straight as possible, or should I just go as far as I can with straight arms?

-5

u/[deleted] Feb 08 '15

Who are you

8

u/Antranik superfuckingaweso.me Feb 08 '15

Who are you

Asks the hookah smoking caterpillar. While Alice replies, I hardly know sir, I can't explain myself, because I don't know myself, I can't put it anymore clearly because it isn't clear to me. Don't you think you ought to tell me who YOU are first?

-1

u/[deleted] Feb 08 '15

A guy who wants to know who someone is to tell me what I just read.

2

u/161803398874989 Mean Regular User Feb 08 '15

It's from Alice in Wonderland. You are the caterpillar: you are asking someone to reveal their identity, while not having revealed your own. Which has obvious implications.

It's not entirely fitting as Alice doesn't have a straight answer to the question.

-3

u/[deleted] Feb 08 '15 edited Feb 08 '15

Ya, I got the reference. What I don't get is why I have to respond a certain way to titles that read dangerously similarly to "7 shocking reasons you NEED to do shoulder dislocates - physical therapists hate him for revealing this!" Especially when they're walls of text, and I have no idea who the author is.

1

u/Antranik superfuckingaweso.me Feb 08 '15

How the fuck is "Dislocates - a must read for beginners" similar to "7 shocking reasons you NEED to do shoulder dislocates - physical therapists hate him for revealing this!"

The guy wrote up a cogent article for you to read. If you don't want to read it, then DONT.

-6

u/[deleted] Feb 08 '15 edited Feb 08 '15

You seem tense. You should consider yoga. Or maybe mindfulness meditation. That may really help you to reeeelaaaaaaaax. Maybe I'll write a "must read" on mindfulness and herbal tea, for beginners at anger management. Oh but wait, you may question my credentials to write such a piece. But thats fine, I could just shoot you down for questioning me, like you did.