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Yoga for Shoulder Health

Yoga is a low-impact exercise with countless benefits for the whole body and mind, and intensity levels can be adjusted to fit individual needs, so anyone can participate in this activity to help their joints. When you move through and hold the postures and poses in yoga, it strengthens muscles and bones which benefits joint health. Healthy bones and strong muscles support the body and take the stress off of joints.

Participating in yoga and doing certain poses can help relieve pain by taking the strain off of the joints and increasing flexibility, range of motion, and stability. But it’s not just for getting rid of preexisting pain… even if you’re not already experiencing joint pain, these poses and strengthening measures can help prevent developing problems in the future.

Some poses to help strengthen and relieve shoulder pain include:

  1. Extended Puppy Pose

  1. Half Moon Pose

  1. Warrior II Pose

  1. Revolved Triangle Pose

  1. Chaturanga Dandasana

It is important to develop the surrounding muscles to relieve shoulder pain and protect the joints to prevent future problems. The rotator cuff muscles play a crucial role in supporting the shoulder joints. Cow Face Pose strengthens and stretches the rotator cuff muscles and Plank Pose also strengthens and stabilizes these important muscles.

The trapezius (traps) and deltoid muscles are also important to develop and strengthen for shoulder health as well. The trapezius is a large muscle that starts at the base of your neck and extends down to the middle of your back and across your shoulders, while the deltoid muscle is the first layer of muscle surrounding the ball-and-socket joint giving your shoulder its rounded shape. Dolphin Pose, Thread the Needle, and Wide-Legged Forward Fold with Clasp are great yoga poses for the trapezius. Eagle Pose and Crow Pose or other variations of arm balancing poses are good for the deltoids and many of the other surrounding shoulder muscles that were discussed.

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