Lifting Exercises That Avoid Stressing Shoulder Ligaments

Focus on lifting exercises that don't hurt your shoulder ligaments.

Focus on lifting exercises that don't hurt your shoulder ligaments.

Some lifting exercises may place excessive stress on your shoulder ligaments, but you can get the maximum benefits from your muscle-toning program and sculpt that lean sexy body you have always wanted by focusing on those lifting exercises that don't hurt or place undue stress on your shoulder ligaments. To reduce risk of injury, always thoroughly warm up before your lifting exercises.

Chest Exercises

The bench press works your chest, anterior deltoids and triceps. When performing the exercise, your hand positioning plays a significant role in the stress on your shoulder ligaments. Avoid wide-grip bench presses and use a narrow grip, roughly shoulder-width or slightly wider, to limit the stress on your shoulder ligaments. Limiting your range of motion as you lower the barbell also reduces the stress on your shoulder ligaments. Stop when the bar is approximately three-inches from your chest, or when your elbows are in line with your body.

Shoulder Exercises

The seated dumbbell shoulder press works all three heads of your deltoids and helps you sculpt sexy rounded deltoids. The traditional technique has you perform the exercise with your elbows out to the sides and shoulders pulled back. To avoid stressing your shoulder ligaments, perform the dumbbell press with your upper arms and elbows angled forward, and perform partial repetitions by stopping when your upper arms are parallel to the floor on the downward motion. You may wish to isolate your anterior deltoids with front raises: hold a pair of dumbbells in front of your thighs with your arms hanging straight down. Alternately lift each dumbbell to shoulder-height before lowering.

Upper Back Exercises

The lat pulldown mainly works your upper back, with a secondary effect to your biceps. To avoid excessive stress on your shoulder ligaments, don't do wide-grip behind-the-head-lat pulldowns. Use a shoulder-width overhand grip and pull the bar down to the top of your chest. To engage your biceps more than your lats or upper back, use a narrow underhand grip and pull the bar down to your mid-sternum. Low pulley rows also work your upper and lower back with negligible stress on your shoulder ligaments.

Squats

It may sound unlikely, but barbell squats can place undue stress on your shoulder ligaments. When you grasp the bar to hold it secure across your shoulders, your elbows are positioned beyond your shoulder joints. This can cause pain and discomfort in your shoulder joints. But you can still use squats to tone your legs and butt. Eliminate any possible stress to your ligaments by holding a pair of dumbbells to the front of your chest

Other Exercises

A number of lifting exercises place negligible stress on your shoulder ligaments. These include triceps kickbacks or triceps pushdowns, and barbell or dumbbell curls for your biceps.

 

About the Author

Ollie Odebunmi's involvement in fitness as a trainer and gym owner dates back to 1983. He published his first book on teenage fitness in December 2012. Odebunmi is a black belt in taekwondo and holds a bachelor's degree in economics from Kingston University in the United Kingdom.

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