Take the Weight of the World off Your Shoulders

Author: Shannon Miller Lifestyle


 Because women often carry the weight of the world on their shoulders (figuratively and literally), we at SML thought you might benefit from learning some refreshing shoulder stretches.

There’s no better time to make this a priority than now – with school back in session and your children’s activities back in full swing.  In the words of the musician Chantal Kreviazuk, “…I used to carry the weight of world and now all I wanna’ do is spread my wings and fly…”

Try out the stretches described below so that you might soar through your hectic week rather than be held down.


Wall Support

Stand back against a wall, feet shoulder-width apart and arms at should height.

  1. Bend your elbows so your fingertips point toward the ceiling and touch the wall behind you.  Stop when you feel a stretch or slight discomfort.shoulder stretch 1
  2. Hold position for 10-30 seconds.
  3. Let your arms slowly roll forward, remaining bent at the elbows, to point toward the floor and touch the wall again if possible.  Again, stop when you feel a stretch or slight discomfort.
  4. Hold position for 10-30 seconds.
  5. Alternate pointing above head, and then toward hips.
  6. Repeat at least 3-5 times.


Terrible Towel

Stand with feet shoulder-width apart.

  1. Hold one end of a towel in your right hand.
  2. Raise and bend your right arm to drape the towel down your back.  Keep your right arm in this position and terrible-towelcontinue holding on to the towel.
  3. Reach behind your lower back and grasp the towel with your left hand.
  4. To stretch your right shoulder, pull the towel down with your left hand.  Stop when you feel a stretch or slight discomfort in your right shoulder.
  5. Repeat at least 3-5 times.
  6. Reverse positions, and repeat 3-5 times.


The Wall Crawl

  1. Stand facing a wall slightly farther than arm’s length from the wall, feet shoulder-width apart.
  2. Lean your body forward and put your palms flat against the wall at shoulder height and shoulder-width apart.wall-crawl
  3. Keep your back straight, slowly walk your hands up the wall until your arms are above your head.
  4. Hold your arms overhead for about 10-30 seconds.
  5. Slowly walk your hands back down.
  6. Repeat at least 3-5 times.

 TIP:  Make yourself a priority this week and take a load off!  Set aside time to unwind with these stretches – you deserve it, Mom!

Source: “Exercise and Physical Activity: Your Everyday Guide from the National Institute on Aging”,  National Institute on Aging.

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