How to Make the Most of Injury Recovery

Originally posted on RockTape

Injury is a fact of life for us, whether we’re high-level athletes or doing casual workouts and regardless of the sport. It’s inevitable that if you’re using your body the way you are supposed to be it’ll get banged up in the process. Here are some ways to make the most of your recovery when you’re injured and to avoid the pitfalls that plague a lot of athletes on the road to wellness.

 

Set realistic goals

Recovery is a process. Healing takes time. It’s easy to be impatient and rush the process but there are limitations of matter and your body will heal at a different rate than someone else’s. Doctors usually give conservative estimates but you need to follow their advice and rehab from your injury using the methods and timeline suggested to you. Rushing things will only cause new problems or set your recovery back substantially.

 

Use your time to hone new skills

One of the athletes in our CrossFit box broke her ankle. Rather than taking a couple months off she worked on upper body stuff. She was there everyday working on upper body strength and other skills that she could do without putting more stress on her ankle and when she recovered she was stronger than ever. There are few injuries that you can’t work around in much the same way, so don’t use an injury as an excuse to be lazy, as tempting as it is!

 

Continue to live a healthy lifestyle 

Even if you are banged up and injured, you can always still eat and sleep right. It’s tempting to take a break from training when you’re injured, and sometimes that’s necessary, but it’s all too often accompanied by donut AMRAPS and staying up late binging on Netflix, too! If nothing else, sticking to your nutrition and sleep/stress habits will keep you primed for when you do return to training and it’ll keep up your good habits while you recover. If you completely fall apart in all aspects, the road to recovery is a lot longer!


Being injured or recovering from surgery suck, but it’s a part of life for most people at some point. Setting realistic goals, staying active around the injury and continuing good lifestyle habits that are already in place will help speed your recovery and keep your mind in the game even if your body is sidelined. Above all else listen to your body and your doctors and be patient and you’ll be back to what you love doing with a healthy body and mind!


What do you recommend for injury recovery? 

Leave us a comment!

4 Reasons to Use Kinesio-Tape with Your Clients

You've probably been hearing a lot about this thing called Kinesiology tape, right? 

It's everywhere because the solutions it provides are life-changing, and luckily the folks at RockTape filled in the gaps for us about how amazing it is. Get the details on what kineso-tape is, what it's good for, and how RockTape makes the best for your clients to "go stronger, longer". 


Originally posted on RockTape.com

 

RockTape turns the volume down on pain. 

More specifically, it runs interference on pain. Ever whack your shin and rub it, and suddenly realize you feel better? RockTape on the skin can interfere with painful signals which are directed to the brain.

When the signals arriving to the brain are altered, it does not produce the sensation of pain. When kinesiology tape is properly applied, many of our customers call it “magic” or think that it fixed their injury instantly. In fact, it helps to change how your body interprets pain, turning down the pain “volume” that your body hears.

 

Decompresses an area of swelling and inflammation

When RockTape is applied to the skin, it has a microscopic lifting effect underneath the skin and between the many layers. This allows the by-products created by inflammation to be removed more quickly.

 

It delays fatigue

Research has shown that RockTape on skin can attenuate muscle fatigue. In rehab, this is very important, not only for the parts of your body that are currently hurting, but also for the surrounding areas as they help to pick up the slack for muscles that are currently not working well.

 

It normalizes muscle tone

When someone is injured, fatigued, sick, or inflamed, the symphony of muscle action that normally takes place with great accuracy often falls out of tune. This can happen all over the body. For instance, research has shown that people who sprain their ankle tend to have altered activity of their hip muscle as a result. RockTape helps bring dormant muscle back to life and help calm down the overactive muscles. It helps your body coordinate movement as if it weren’t hurt, hence allowing it to heal properly.

 

It distributes physical stress

Unlike conventional taping, which prevents movement – RockTape allows full movement of a taped area.  Through elastic properties and quick recoil, RockTape can help distribute forces to other nearby areas through the fascia, ligaments, and even bones.


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How to Answer Embarrassing Questions for Massage Clients

Written by Taylor Davis

 

Massage therapy sessions can be intimidating to newcomers.

Acupuncture, massage therapy, dry-needling – services like these can leave your current and potential clients feeling a little lost. 

We all have questions when we walk into something we’ve never experienced before. The problem is, a lot of new clients aren’t comfortable asking things they deem embarrassing.

So, why not quell those fears when they’re waiting for their appointment or even before they ever step foot in the door?

The first step is figuring out what questions them have. Some common massage therapy questions you may see are:

  • Do I Tip?
  • Do I take off my underwear?
  • Do I go somewhere to undress?
  • How do I tell you I’m self-conscious?
  • Should I talk during the massage?
  • How do I tell you to increase/decrease pressure without insulting you?
  • Can I request a female therapist?
  • What if I have to go to the bathroom?

A lot of patients are embarrassed to ask questions face to face, so remember to answer them in the least embarrassing way possible. Usually by providing information before their treatment via email or social media, or even around the office can help immensely.

Here are a few ways to answer their questions without forcing them to ask.

 

Pamphlets

This is a great way to provide easy, quick information to your patients. Remember to be cautious of providing too much information – long paragraphs and detailed questions often turn people off from reading.

Look around your office and take note of how many pamphlets and brochures are sitting around. Will yours get lost in the mass?

You can make these easily in a Microsoft program or online free on Canva.com.

HANG UP SIGNS

Patients may be more likely to see these in the waiting or massage room.

Create non-busy, easy-to-read signs that have simple tips or answers. Don’t put too much text since it makes it more difficult to read, and doesn’t allow the client to focus on the single question.

These can also be created with Microsoft or Canva.

Send them an email beforehand

You probably already have an email system in place. If not, you should definitely invest. Use this tool to send reminders, coupons and inform them of a few things, like the type of massage they signed up for.

Keep your clients informed!

Sending them a reminder or a confirmation with the answer to some of these common questions is an easy way to put it in front of them without any extra effort on your part. Set up the reminder email to have that information, put it on auto-send and call it a day!

 

Send them a survey after

Sometimes people don’t’ realize they have questions until after the massage has finished. Follow up with your customers to improve your practice and ask them pointed questions.

Did you have any issues arise during the treatment that you didn’t want to bring up?

Were you uncomfortable at any time? (Temperature, pressure during massage etc…)

How can we make experiences like this better for you?

Figuring out their “pain points” can help you answer how they should bring it up.

 

Post on social media

Figure out where your audience is - Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest – then use free automation tools to send out tips and behind the scenes on a daily basis. It’s an easy set it and forget it method that can help you connect with your audience, and market your business. 

This also helps potential clients decide if they want to book a session with you.


 The best part about all of these options? They are practically cost-free.

You invest what you want into them, or go the free route.

Cut some embarrassment for your patient. Take a little time to create some of these helpful pieces and provide comfort at the same time. These tips work great for any health care office or clinic.

How the Core & Pelvis Relate to Functional Gait

Written by Trent Brown

In most gait texts, articles, or journals we study the various phases of gait such as initial contact, loading response, mid stance, etc. It is generally regarded that 60% of gait is spent in stance phase while 40% is spent in swing phase. As clinicians, it is difficult to determine what to emphasize with gait or mobility training for our clients when so many factors are involved.

Do I focus on lower extremity strengthening, pelvic mobility, core stability, sensation, proprioception, or one of the other myriad of possibilities?

I've focused on the “determinants of gait”. In other words, what determines how successful a client can be with gait, ambulation, or functional mobility? Regardless of a clients’ strength or level of function we must determine whether or not they have the necessary skills to be successful.

Most of our clients have been walking since 10-13 months of age, but typically this natural pattern becomes dysfunctional as we age, leading to falls, excessive energy expenditure, and pain.
 
The determinants of gait are often classified into 5 features with an overall goal to reduce the amount of movement of the center of gravity outside of the base of support.

1) Lateral Pelvic Tilt in the Frontal Plane
2) Knee Flexion at Mid-stance
3) Knee, Ankle, Foot Interactions
4) Pelvic Rotation in the Transverse Plane
5) Physiological Valgus of the Knee


I have developed a different way of viewing these five determinants. I have added “sit-stand” and “reciprocal arm swing” determinants while removing the “physiological valgus of the knee” determinant. I directly address six determinants or factors that will help you analyze how successful our clients will be with pre-gait, gait, ambulation, and functional mobility.

 

Sit-stand

This is completely new and may be disregarded as a determinant of gait, but I consider this as an absolute determinant.

When can gait begin if a sit-stand doesn’t occur?

Often we spend weeks or months working with a client to get them to complete a sit-stand with increased independence or safety. Like the mobility aspects of gait, our goal is to keep the clients’ COG over the BOS to reduce the work load and effort required to complete a sit-stand.
 
This must happen prior to initiating locomotion.

Anterior pelvic tilt is required to approximately 10 to 15 degrees to initiate and complete a sit–stand. Likewise, a posterior pelvic tilt during the hip hinge or straightening phase of sit-stand must equally occur to bring the pelvis back to a neutral position.

We must ensure our clients have the appropriate amount of anterior and posterior pelvic tilt to complete this phase. During the rest of the gait cycle approximately 4-5 degrees of pelvic tilt (from neutral) is required for normal ambulation.
 

Lateral Pelvic Tilt in the Frontal Plane 

This controlled “pelvic drop” to the ipsilateral swinging limb occurs when the COG reaches its apex due to the height reached during single leg stance. The Gluteus Medius and large hip abductors provide stabilization via eccentric contraction to allow control of the pelvic drop. Ultimately, the goal of lateral pelvic tilt is to reduce the vertical movement of the COG or bounce during gait. This in turn leads to increased safety and a reduction in energy expenditure.

 
Knee Flexion at Mid-stance

This determinant works in conjunction with the lateral pelvic tilt in reducing vertical displacement of the COG. At the point when a client reaches “flat foot” until mid-stance, the knee eccentrically loads and slightly flexes due to the weight of the body. This acts as a cushion or buffer between our COG and the ground to avoid a pendulum or bouncing affect.
 

Knee, Ankle, and Foot Interactions

This rhythmical interaction occurs during the load response (beginning of stance) and pre-swing (end of stance) to alter the length of the limb. This interaction increases the length of the limbs to reduce the amount of drop of the COG toward the floor. While one lower extremity initiates heel strike on a dorsi-flexed ankle, the opposite limb delays the toe-off with a plantar-flexed ankle. This occurs during the lowest vertical point of our COG and the greatest acceleration phase of gait.

 

Pelvic Rotation in the Transverse Plane

Pelvic rotation is a combination of the advancement of the limb during swing phase with the progression of the opposite limb during stance phase.

When the left limb swings forward, the left side of the pelvis also moves forward rotating the
pelvis to the right (from neutral).

During stance-phase of the left limb (right limb swinging forward) the pelvis rotates to the left.
 
 

Reciprocal Arm Swing

The reciprocal arm swing occurs during all phases of gait and directly correlates with step length. The opposite upper limb rhythmically swings in conjunction with the opposing lower limb during each phase. Not only does this pattern increase force production and step length, but balance.

As the majority of the lower body weight swings forward, the opposite upper limb swings forward to reduce the amount of energy expended by the core musculature for stability and acts as an anatomical counterweight reducing energy expenditure and COG displacement.


My course,  A Stronger Core for Stronger Outcomes - Improving Function, Balance, & Mobility will give you the tools to better analyze your clients and their “determinants of gait”.

Most of our clients regardless of age, level of function, or diagnosis will require some treatment to improve these determinants. This course specifically address’ techniques to increase anterior/posterior pelvic tilt, lateral pelvic tilt, and pelvic rotation.

In addition, multiple stabilization strategies were given to increase core stability during ambulation thus allowing a smoother lower limb and upper reciprocal pattern.


Interested in learning more from Trent Brown? Take a look at his CE approved courses here. 

Tell us what you'd like to learn in the comment section below. 

VIDEO: 12 Mobility Exercises for Upper Extremities from RockTape

The folks at RockTape are paving the way in rehabilitation techniques. These 12 techniques can help improve your patient's mobility in the upper extremities, and the best part? All these simple videos are less than a minute long. 

Dare to go stronger, longer? 

Dr. Ed Le Cara sharing a technique used to help mobilize using the RockTape Rockband. In this video, he shows how to easily mobilize the shoulder with a need for a rig or external anchor.
 
Dr. Ed Le Cara demonstrating a technique used to help mobilize using the RockTape RockBand. In this video, he uses the black resistance band to help mobilize the shoulder and demonstrates how easy it is to do this with a partner.
 
Annie Sakamoto demonstrating a technique used to help mobilize using the RockTape RockBalls. In this video, she uses the bigger, textured ball to focus on the pectoral muscles and uses a rig to give her more options with range of motion. This technique will help add stability to the spine as well as increase mobility in the Shoulder.
 
Annie Sakamoto demonstrating a technique used to help mobilize using the RockTape RockBalls. In this video, she uses the bigger, textured ball to focus on the triceps. This technique will help add stability to the elbow as well as increase mobility in the shoulder. Pin and Stretch Technique: 1.
 
Annie Sakamoto demonstrating a technique used to help mobilize using the RockTape RockNRoller. In this video, she uses our foam roller to focus on the biceps. This technique will help add stability to the knee as well as increase mobility in the hip. Pin and Stretch Technique: 1.
 
Annie Sakamoto demonstrating a technique used to help mobilize using the RockTape RockNRoller. In this video, she uses our foam roller to focus on the triceps. This technique will help add stability to the elbow as well as increase mobility in the shoulder. Pin and Stretch Technique: 1.
 
Annie Sakamoto demonstrating a technique used to help mobilize using the RockTape RockBalls. In this video, she uses the bigger, textured ball to focus on the biceps. This technique will help add stability to the elbow as well as increase mobility in the shoulder. Pin and Stretch Technique: 1.
 
Annie Sakamoto demonstrating a technique used to help mobilize using the RockTape RockBalls. In this video, she uses our foam roller to focus on the deltoid. This technique will help add stability to the elbow/spine as well as increase mobility in the shoulder. Rapid Roll Technique: 1.
 
Annie Sakamoto demonstrating a technique used to help mobilize using the RockTape RockBalls. In this video, she uses the bigger, textured ball to focus on the deltoid. This technique will help add stability to the elbow/spine as well as increase mobility in the shoulder. Rapid Roll Technique: 1.
 
Annie Sakamoto demonstrating a technique used to help mobilize using the RockTape RockBalls. In this video, she uses the bigger, textured ball to focus on the muscles that support the shoulder girdle. This technique will help add stability to the spine as well as increase mobility in the shoulder.
 
Annie Sakamoto demonstrating a technique used to help mobilize using the RockTape RockNRoller. In this video, she uses tour foam roller to focus on the neck, trapezius. This technique will help add stability to the neck (cervical spine) as well as increase mobility in the shoulders. Pin and Stretch Technique: 1.
 
Annie Sakamoto demonstrating a technique used to help mobilize using the RockTape RockBalls. In this video, she uses the bigger, textured ball to focus on the deltoid and uses a rig to add options to her range of motion. This technique will help add stability to the elbow/spine as well as increase mobility in the shoulder.

Can you use these mobility exercises for your patients? 

34 Pictures to Show You Which Muscle You're Stretching

This post originally came from The Open Mind

Stretching is by far one of the most vital things you can do for mental and physical health.

Regardless if your profession is in Rehab or Mental Health, these illustrations can provide some clarity for visual learners. Stretching improves posture and athletic performance while lowering your risk of pain or injury.

Everyone from desk-jockeys to active professionals can benefit from these. 

Use them to learn for yourself or share with your patients!

Vicky Timón, a yoga expert and author of “Encyclopedia of Pilates Exercises,” created these beautiful illustrations, and James Kilgallon, CSCS, creator of Mazlo’s Body Maintenance Program, contributed the expert commentary.


1. Camel Pose

Muscles highlighted: Rectus Abdominus and External Obliques. This stretch is best reserved for people who have good flexibility already.  Sit on your heels and place your hands behind you as you push your hips up and forward. Avoiding putting too much pressure on your lumbar spine. If you have neck problems do not drop your head back.

2. Wide Forward Fold

Muscles highlighted: Adductors. This is a great exercise to open the hips, and stretch the adductors and hamstrings.  Start this stretch with your knees bent, and spine straight.  As your muscles begin to release you can slowly straighten your legs, round out your back and reach for your feet.  Lightly pull on the bottom of the balls of your feet to release the calf muscles as well.  If you can not reach your feet you can use a belt or towel. You can also perform this stretch lying on your back with your feet going up the wall.

3. Frog Pose

Muscles Highlighted: Adductors. This is a deep groin stretch that can place pressure on your knees so it’s helpful to be on a soft surface.  Start by resting on your hands and knees and slowly bring your knees wider until you feel a good stretch in your groin muscles. You will feel slight variations in the stretch as you actively push your hips back and forward.

4. Wide Side Lunge Pose

Muscles Highlighted: Adductors. Start with both feet forward in a wide stance with your legs as straight as possible.  Slowly walk your hands to your right foot while bending your right knee and rotating your left toes up to the ceiling, sitting into your right hip.  Keep your right foot flat on the ground.

5. Butterfly Stretch

Muscles Highlighted: Adductors. Start in a seated position and bring the soles of your feet together and sit tall through your sit bones. Progress this stretch by placing pressure on your knees with your hands. The closer your feet are to your body the more you will stretch your groin muscles.  Bring your feet farther from your hips and slowly round your upper body to release your back muscles.

6. Forearm Extensor Stretch

Muscles Highlighted: Forearm Extensor. Start by packing your shoulder down and back, then externally rotate the shoulder for the optimal position to stretch the forearm muscle. Once in this position apply pressure to your opposing hand to begin the stretch.  You can progress this stretch by touching the tips of your fingers together in a tea cup shape. 

7. Lateral Side Flexion of the Neck

Muscles Highlighted: Sternocleidomastoid “SCM”. Try to keep your neck as long as possible while slowly dropping your ear to your shoulder, making sure you are not collapsing your cervical spine. You can progress this stretch by being seated on a chair and grabbing the bottom of the seat. This will help you create consistent tension down the arm and neck which will allow you to target the upper traps.

8. Neck Rotation Stretch

Muscles Highlighted: Sternocleidomastoid “SCM”. Start by slowly rotating your neck, while keeping your chin slightly elevated to isolate the SCM.  If you would like to get a deeper stretch apply pressure with the opposite hand from the direction that you are rotating.

9. Neck Extension Stretch

Muscles Highlighted: Sternocleidomastoid “SCM”. Start by placing your hands on your hips, while keeping your spine long start to tilt your head back, making sure you are not collapsing your cervical spine.


10. Lateral Side Flexion of the Neck with Hand Assistance

Muscles Highlighted: Sternocleidomastoid “SCM” and Upper Trapezius.  Try to keep your neck as long as possible while slowly dropping your ear to your shoulder, making sure you are not collapsing your cervical spine. You can progress this stretch by being seated on a chair while grabbing the bottom of the seat.  This will help you create consistent tension down the arm and neck which will allow you to target the upper traps.

11. Half Kneeling Quad / Hip Flexor Stretch

Muscles Highlighted: Psoas and Quadracep. Start in a half-kneeling position. As you slowly bring your right hip forward you should begin to feel a stretch in the front of your hip. Grab your back foot and squeeze your back glute to increase the stretch on your Hip Flexors.

12. Forearm Extensor Stretch

Muscles Highlighted: Forearm Extensor. Start by packing your shoulder down and back, then externally rotate the shoulder for the optimal position to stretch the forearm muscle. Once in this position apply pressure to your opposing hand to begin the stretch.  You can progress this stretch by touching the tips of your fingers together in a tea cup shape.

13. Lateral Shoulder Stretch

Muscles Highlighted: Side Deltoid. Bring your arm across your body and lightly apply pressure to your arm to increase the stretch on your shoulder.

14. Standing Assisted Neck Flexion Stretch

Muscles Highlighted:Trapezius Muscle. Start by standing with you feet together. Keeping your spine long, slowly sit your hips back and round your upper back, tucking your chin to your chest at the same time.

15. Lat Stretch with Spinal Traction

Muscles Highlighted: Latissimus Dorsi. Start by taking a firm grip on bar, then slowly lift your feet off the ground. You should feel a stretch in your lats and chest. If you take your feet completely off the ground you will feel traction in your your lumbar spine.  Avoid this stretch if you have recently injured your shoulder, and/or have impingement of the shoulder.

16. Lat Stretch at the Wall

Muscles Highlighted: Latissimus Dorsi. Start by placing both hands on the corner of a wall or post.  While keeping your spine long, slowly push your hips out to the side. Avoid this stretch if you have lower back problems.

17. Child’s Pose

Muscles Highlighted: Latissimus Dorsi. Start on your hands and knees then slowly bring your hips back until your forehead is on the floor.  You can bring your knees wider to get a better stretch in your hips. Arch your upper back and externally rotate your shoulders to stretch your lats and chest muscles.

18. Standing Calf Stretch

Muscles Highlighted: Soleus and Gastrocnemius. You can perform this stretch on a rack or on the edge of a stair step. Lightly rotate your ankles internally and externally to actively stretch the calf muscles.

19. Front Split

Muscles Highlighted: Psoas and Hamstring. This is an advanced stretch, proceed with caution if you have any hip problems. Start in a kneeling lunge position, it can also be helpful to have the support of a chair as your hip flexors and hamstrings release.

20. Seated Forward Fold / Seated Toe Touch

Muscles Highlighted: Hamstrings and Calfs. Start by sitting into your sit bones and bend the knees if needed. As your flexibility improves your legs will naturally straighten. If you have back problems keep the spine as straight as possible. You can also perform this stretch lying on your back with your feet up a wall.

21. Single Leg Forward Bend

Muscles Highlighted: Hamstrings. Start this position with one foot in front of the other. Bring your hands to your hips and while keeping the back straight, begin to bend from the hips.

22. Deep Squat

Muscles Highlighted: Glutes. This movement has a global effect on all areas of your body. If you have bad knees, or cannot keep your heels on the ground, practice your squat before proceeding. Start by standing with your feet shoulder width apart then slowly lower yourself into the deep squat. Once in position bring your arms inside your legs and lightly apply pressure to the inside of your knees, sitting into the hips and heels. You can also practice this position lying on your back with your feet against a wall.

23. Seated Half King Pigeon Pose

Muscles Highlighted: Glutes. Start in a seated position slowly pull your leg to your chest and externally rotate your hip while keeping your spine straight.  You should feel this stretch in your glute.

24. Standing Calf Stretch at the Wall

Muscles Highlighted: Soleus and Gastrocnemius. Start out in a lunge position with your back foot slightly turned out.  Slowly bring your back heel to the ground to stretch your calf muscles.

25. Lateral Flexion at the Wall

Muscles Highlighted: External Obliques. While keeping your spine long slowly push your hips out the the side.  Avoid this stretch if you have lower back problems.

26. Supine Twist

Muscles Highlighted: Glutes and External Obliques. This is a great stretch for those trying to manage Sciatic Pain.  Start by lying flat on your back then bring one leg across your body, slowly rotating your gaze and upper body in the opposite direction. The key to this stretch is using your breath to open up your rib cage and sacroiliac joint and hip area without placing too much pressure on the lower back.  If you find this stretch to be too difficult you can stack both of your knees on top of each other. Once in this position you will feel more of a stretch on the upper spine when the knees are higher, and more of a stretch on the lumbar spine when the knees are lower.

27. Lateral Flexion with a Dowel

Muscles Highlighted: External Obliques and Latissimus Dorsi. With your spine long, slowly push your hips out to the side while keeping your shoulders externally rotated. Avoid this stretch if you have lower back problems.

28. Triangle Pose

Muscles Highlighted: External Obliques. Start with a wide stance with your front foot straight ahead, and your back foot at 90 degrees. Place your hand on your front leg or floor as you sit back into your front hip with a straight back. As you rotate away from your front leg keep your gaze on the hand that is in the air.

29. Chest Stretch at the Wall

Muscles Highlighted: Pectorals. Start by facing the wall with your thumb up. Slowly rotate away from the wall to stretch your chest muscle. You should feel this stretch in the belly of the muscle.  If you feel it in the shoulder joint you are stretching too far.

30. Assisted Chest Stretch

Muscles Highlighted: Chest and Latissimus Dorsi. Start by lying on the floor with your palms facing up. As you partner sits into a deep squat you should feel a stretch in your chest and lats.  You will also get some traction in your spine from the stretch. Avoid this stretch if you have impingement of the shoulder.

31. Seated Half Pigeon Variation

Muscles Highlighted: Anterior Tibialis. Start by sitting with your feet in front of you. Bring one hand behind you as you externally rotate your hip and bring one foot above your knee. To increase the stretch on your hip slowly lean forward, initiating the movement by hinging at the hips.

32. Supine Shoulder External Rotation Stretch

Muscles Highlighted: Subscapularis. Start by lying flat on your back, bring your arm straight out to the side with your elbow at a 90 degree angle. Slowly bring the back of your hand to the floor. If you hand is far away from floor it means your rotator cuff and other muscles that control internal rotation are tight.

33. Down Dog Variation at the Wall

Muscles Highlighted: Pectorals and Latissimus Dorsi. Position yourself far enough from a wall or rack so that when you touch the wall your body becomes parallel to the ground.  Move into this position by hinging at the hips and keeping your spine straight.  Once in position, push your chest forward creating a slight arch in your upper back, stretching your lats and chest muscles. If you have tight hamstrings try bending at the knees.

34. Assisted Chest Stretch Variation

Muscles Highlighted: Pectorals. Start by lying face down on the floor with your palms facing down. As your partner pulls back on your hands you will feel a deep stretch in your chest muscles. Avoid this stretch if you have impingement of the shoulder.