How to prevent and resolve your shoulder pain.


Shoulder pain routinely comes up in conversation within my Pilates community. It’s quite common especially for those over the age of forty. There are simple things that you can to do prevent and resolve your pain.


1/ Pilates for preventing shoulder pain


Within the scope of Pilates, professionals can address the imbalances and alignment issues that contribute to pain by strengthening postural muscles and restoring range of motion. 


If you’re new to Pilates and experiencing pain, it’s good to invest in a few private lessons to learn the principles and proper form of the exercises to address your specific issues. 


There are budget friendly options including on demand classes, online classes and community mat classes. Start at the beginning with level 1 classes to master the basics and get the most benefit from your practice.


To get you started, here are a few short videos to improve shoulder alignment and range of motion:


Pilates Mat


1/ Shoulder Mobility Series | All Levels | 1 Minute

2/ Tone your Shoulders | All Levels | 7 Minute Pilates Mat Workout

3/ Upper Body Release | All Levels | 10 Minute Pilates Mat Workout 


Pilates Reformer


1/ Shoulder Strengthening | All Levels | 4 Minutes

2/ Round Back Rowing Series | Intermediate | 5 Minutes


2/ Get to the root cause to resolve your pain


It’s also good to get the root cause so that you can prevent it. Start by bringing some awareness to what you’re doing that could be contributing to the pain, such as:


1/ Do you routinely carry a heavy shoulder purse or bag?


Lighten your bag or distribute the weight more evenly to prevent shoulder pain. Look through your bag and remove anything that you don’t need on a regular basis, consider a bag made of lighter fabric or a different style such as a crossbody bag or backpack.


2/ Do you routinely sleep on your side? 


Change the way you sleep to reduce the pressure and give your body time to restore. Sleeping on your back is best for preventing shoulder pain. Admittedly, it’s an adjustment that takes some work. A new pillow for back sleepers can help. If you must sleep on your side, consider a memory foam topper to make your bed softer. It will help cushion your joint and keep your spine in alignment.


3/ Do you engage in a repetitive activity?


Even too much of a healthy activity like swimming can lead to shoulder pain over time. If the activity causing pain is sport or play related, add a different activity into your routine that reduces the demand on your shoulder. Otherwise, ask your employer for an ergonomics assessment of your work station to reduce the demand on your body. 


3/ Consult your doctor


If the pain persists, consult your doctor. Why? The mantra “no pain no gain” does not apply to this type of pain. It left unresolved, the pain will likely get worse with time.

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