Healthy Aging Tips from Sit and Be Fit's Mary Ann Wilson RN
Sit and Be Fit TV host, Mary Ann Wilson, RN

Strong shoulders begin with flexible shoulder joints. The following exercises will keep your shoulder joints flexible and healthy. These movements can be performed lying down on a bed or floor. You can also adapt them to a standing position by placing your back up against a wall.

Straight Arm Stretch Exercise for the Shoulders

• Lie on your back with knees bent. Feet should be flat on the bed or floor with arms by your side.
• Slowly raise one arm to the ceiling with the palm facing the body. Keep the neck lengthened and try not to lift the shoulder toward the ear.
• Concentrate on keeping the shoulder blades together while keeping both shoulders on the bed or floor.
• Return the arm to the starting position and raise it three more times.
• The last two times continue to raise the arm, according to your comfort level, until it rests above the head.
• Try to touch your thumb to the bed or floor, staying within your own range of motion. If there is any pain, back off.
• Repeat the exercise with other arm.

Two Arm Reaches into “Flags Up” Exercise for the Shoulders

• Lie on your back with knees bent.  Feet should be flat on bed or floor.
• Starting position: arms by your side with palms facing the body.
Raise both arms to the ceiling with palms facing the body.
• Return to starting position. Raise both arms directly overhead keeping the shoulders in contact with the bed or floor.
• Go only as far overhead as comfortable, staying within your range of motion. Repeat several times.
• Return to the starting position.
• The next time, take both arms overhead and bend the elbows, sliding them along the bed or floor until they are in line with your shoulders, creating a “flags up” position. The palms should be facing forward.
• Extend the arms overhead by sliding the elbows back along the bed or floor. Slide the elbows back down into the flags up position and repeat several times.

Recommended Sit and Be Fit workouts for improving shoulder strength and flexibility:

Chair Exercise BasicsSeason 12Season 13Season 14

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