I’ve put together this article series sharing my simpler ways for achieving the same benefits as corrective exercise in a faster manner, while getting my clients and athletes stronger and fitter.
Here are my first two installments in this series for you to also check out:
- Anti-Corrective Exercises for Tight Hip Flexors
- Anti-Corrective Exercises for Improving Ankle Dorsiflexion Mobility and Stability
In this article I’m showing you my top exercises for improving overhead shoulder mobility, and for addressing tight pecs and rounded shoulders in a way that offsets the need to spend lots of extra time doing corrective exercise protocols that don’t get you stronger and fitter.
What is Corrective Exercise? Anti-Corrective Exercise?
For the sake of this article series, I’m defining corrective exercise simply as specific protocols intended to address muscle imbalances and functional deficits in mobility and stability.
That said, I don’t prefer to use the term “corrective exercises” with clients and athletes because it implies they’re somehow broken. So, aside from what makes for a cool article title that gets attention – I don’t write articles like this for no one to read – I don’t really call these moves “anti-corrective exercises” because it can come off as negative, or as if I’m trying to undermine anyone associated with using or teaching corrective exercise.
I call these “MOST exercises,” because they combine MObility + STrength in one move in order to get the MOST done and get my clients and athletes the MOST ability.
As I wrote in more detail in my first two articles in this series on Exercises for Tight Hip Flexors, and Exercises for Improving Ankle Dorsiflexion Mobility and Stability; I’m not against spending extra time using a more common corrective exercise approach. I’m simply against starting there.
My approach is: Before you go right into spending extra time away from doing challenging workouts that are enjoyable and geared toward the person’s physique and performance goals to go the corrective exercise route, FIRST try using the MOST exercises I’ve highlighted in this article series. You’ll find they take care of the majority of issues you’re concerned about without taking time away from achieving the muscle building and performance benefits our clients and athletes want.
How to Improve Overhead Mobility and Stability, Fast!
There are lots of exercises used by intelligent trainers and coaches to help improve overhead shoulder mobility, such as wall slides, face pulls, etc. And, those are all fine to do.
Here I’m highlighting some exercises that you’re probably not already using, which I’ve found valuable for improving overhead shoulder mobility while building upper-body strength that translates to better movement performance.
Cable Bent-Elbow Compound Pull-over
Strength while stretching (i.e., lengthening the muscle group being loaded) not only makes the range of motion stick, it also gives you better stability because you’ve got the strength to control the position you’ve gained the range of motion in. Hence why I developed this exercise, and the rest of the exercises featured this article.
Cable One-Arm Compound Cable Row
This one not only covers both shoulder overhead mobility and strength throughout a large range of motion, but the stretch you get feels great!
Stability-Ball Wall Rollout (for Beginners)
This is one of my favorite exercises for seniors because it’s easy to do properly while giving them a great way to “open-up” the front of their body and shoulders in a very safe and controlled manner.
How to Stretch Tight Pecs and Strengthen Rounded Shoulders Simultaneously
One of the most common questions I get from trainers, especially when they hear that I don’t follow any corrective exercise school of thought, is “What do you do for a client with tight pecs and rounded shoulders?”
In addition to doing basic upper-body pulling and pushing strength exercises; these are my top two isolation exercises, which I developed to improve extensibility of the pecs while improving strength of the posterior shoulder musculature.
Make sure you listen to the audio on all of these exercise tutorial videos below and above for important details.
Shoulder Y,T,L with Pec Stretch
I came up with this combination of a pec stretch with the shoulder Y,T, L exercise to get more benefit from each. And, ever since, it’s been one of my go-to moves!
Band Rear-Delt Fly with Pec Stretch
If someone has trouble getting on their knees to perform the previous exercise, this is what I’ll have them do. Not to mention, this is also a great upper-body warm-up move because it gets your shoulders stretched in the front and fired up in the back!
Want to learn more about how I approach programming for my clients and athletes so I can meet their goals while addressing their physical limitations? Then you’ll definitely want to check out my Practical Program Design Mastery course where I lay out my entire programming system.