Shoulder mobility question

I have limited mobility in my shoulders and have trouble with poses that have you lifting your arms straight up and moving them back (for example, crescent lunge). Having my fingers interlinked with palms inside out is even harder.
Is it more important to keep my arms straight in these poses, in which case my arms will be 6” in front of my body, or to try to move my arms behind my ears, which I can only do if my arms are either bent or angled quite far out from my body?

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Hi Tina,

This is a great question! Shoulder mobility is something that comes with time and practice. The best thing you can do, is to do what you can. Take yourself to the edge of mobility and touch any discomfort as lightly as you can with your breath. Don;t think about pushing farther, but rather waiting on the edge and softening around it. Using a strap between your hands in crecent and pulling the hands outward will also help with mobility and stability. Keep working on it and watch those millimeter miracles take place month by month.


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I have same issue, even down dog is hard since I can’t straighten my arm. Yoga has been pretty impossible over the last year but I’m trying to do a limited, VERY modified, practice.
Thx for the question


Is your shoulder mobility issue arising from an injury or has it been an ongoing challenge? There are a lot of reasons why we have limitations in our shoulders and understanding what is stems from can help you make progress by choosing the right approach. There is skelatal variation in the way the joint is set up which will make it very challenging for some people to take their arms full over their head and straighten their arms, essentailly what you are doing in down dog. Injuries and scar tissure can also be a consideration and in that case phisio in addition to yoga would be something to consider.

I also have limited mobility in my shoulders, wrists and elbows but it is very gradually improving with gentle yoga. Have you tried Melissas Beginners' Yoga for Shoulder Strength | or Davids Yoga for the Hands, Arms and Shoulders with David Procyshyn | - YouTube I found these two particularly useful. Trish

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