“Raise your hand if you’ve ever had shoulder problems. And if you didn’t raise your hand, it’s because you probably can’t.”
- Pavel Tsatsouline to the attendees of a training workshop
Out of all the annoying issues that can pop up in your training, are any more annoying than shoulder troubles?
According to a survey I did of my audience a few months back, more people have had shoulder issues interrupt their training than anything else.
So what’s the deal? Are shoulders just a “poorly designed joint” as many seem to think?
While the shoulder is the most mobile and complex joint of them all (actually, it’s a collection of joints), the real culprit is multi-faceted.
While there are many considerations when it comes to getting your shoulders to ‘play ball’, for those who have angry shoulders there seem to be a few major commonalities that I’ve come across that cause the most problems:
- Muscle imbalances – nearly all of which are seriously avoidable with proper, non-minimalistic training
- Immobility – most of which can be smoothed out with a few gentle-yet-hard-hitting “movability” drills
The solution is often as simple as introducing 3 things into your training, namely:
- Select stretches
- Movability drills
- Focused strength work
Given the near universal ubiquitousness of shoulder problems in the kettlebell & bodyweight world, I’ve decided to update and expand my classic Bulletproof Shoulders guide.
This is NOT a program, nor is it a challenge. It is a step-by-step guide to introduce you to some of my favorite restorative shoulder drills that not only have the potential to make your shoulders feel better, but might even smooth out the path before you to help you rise to newer and greater heights in your upper body strength.
In this guide you will learn:
- Why your training can either make your shoulders feel better or worse (page 3)
- How to use a standard door frame to gently stretch one of the nearby muscle groups that is often among the #1 contributors to shoulder dysfunction and discomfort (hint: it’s not even the shoulders themselves!) (page 5)
- Arguably the #1 most important movements of the shoulder for stability, health, and effortless movement – and how to restore it using your floor (page 6)
- Why your spine might be the key to putting more mobility and resilience in your shoulders than a dozen woo-woo, nonsensical “shoulder mobility drills” (pages 8-11)
- A 4-move sequence inspired by a former national-level gymnast and current Master SFG instructor to unlock the power of your scapulae – the lynchpin for ALL upper body strength (page 13)
- The ultra-light dumbbell move that 6-time Mr. Olympia Dorian Yates has said might have SAVED HIM from many debilitating shoulder injuries during his long and illustrious career (page 19)
- A downright heretical bodybuilding movement that may do more to add much-needed shoulder stability than just about any other drill – while simultaneously building a set of eye-popping, t-shirt-busting shoulders! (page 20)
- Battle of the Bands: the top light rubber band drill that I used to help soothe out my own frustrating shoulder and even neck issues (page 21)
- A simple, 10-day onboarding routine to help YOU customize your own bulletproof shoulder routine that can enhance and revitalize just about any program you’re on (page 22-23)
Cost for this guide is just $39 – peanuts compared to the countless thousands of greenbacks I’ve shelled out over the years addressing my own otherwise perfectly avoidable shoulder issues (not to mention the hours of research, testing, and re-testing I’ve done to find what works and what doesn’t – both for myself and my students).
I should note once again: this is NOT a substitute for physical therapy, doctors or chiropractic visits, or medical attention if that is what your shoulders need. This is a guide to help you train smarter to avoid or reverse course on annoying aches, stiffness, discomfort, and other frustrating feelings in your shoulders – NOT to deal with legitimate pain or physical damage, for which you should ONLY see a licensed professional. So please keep that amply in mind.
Have fun and happy training!