T Nation

Shoulders rounding forward

i guess i wasn’t aware of this problem that i have, but it was pointed out to me tonight at the gym. and i realize that yes it seems that my shoulders are deff. rounding foward. so i ask what exercises can i do to help balance this out, and will me concsiously making sure my shoulders are pulled back when i walk around help to cure this problem.

I have the same problem you do, Dizzle. I started a posture-rehab program last week. Boy do I feel it. My back’s been so sore the last week I decided to forego lifting for a short while.

You can check out the following articles for info on posture-correction exercises.

Heal That Hunckback by Mike Robertson http://t-mag.com/nation_articles/290hunch.jsp

Cracking the Rotator Cuff Conundrum by Eric Cressey

I’m using quite a few exercises from Mike’s article, in addition to some others he gave me. The scapular wall slides are a real killer. In addition, I do external rotations and Cuban presses. I plan to add some of the exercises described in Eric’s article this week.

I’m following an intensive program, doing the exercises every day.

Along with the exercise you might want to consider some active release therapy. If you’ve been rounding forward for some time your chest muscles will have become used to being in the shortened position. Along with stretching you may benefit from having an ART provider (www.activerelease.com) have a look at you.

Check out Ian Kings “Out of Kilter” series as well.

Both of those articles are real good. However understand that postural correction is a full time job! Even if you re-balance your structures you’ll still have to consciously (at first) try to maintain a proper posture. It took you several years to get a bad posture, you won’t completely solve the problem in a few weeks or a few days.

thanks for the replies, yeah i’ll check out those articles for sure and see if i can fix my problem eventually.

Try strengthening your back as well. In life, we tend to use our pectoralis a lot more than our back, we also slouch, a lot. Strengthening your back, as well as improving your posture will help you out.

Keep in mind that your rounded shoulders may not be an isolated postural abnormality. They very well may be compensations for dysfunction in the core and lower body.

Check out Big Back Stack by CT…also I found I avoided this problem by doing heavy rows when I was new to training. In fact I’d say my problem is the opposite of many people…my chest is small and my back is much larger. But the benefit is that it prevented my shoulders from rounding.

Back workouts that are verticle lifts won’t help you very much in comparison to horizontal lifts. Also do a lot of posterior shoulder work. I’ve drop direct anterior shoulder work and stick to medial and posterior work alone. Anterior shoulders get worked a lot in most other movements involving chest, and some back, so doing direct workout on them will only further your rounded shoulders.

Best of luck

The three things that helped my rounded shoulders the most:

  1. Don Alessi’s “inner abs” exercises
  2. light-weight, isometric, high TUT rear delt work with Body Masters pec/rear delt cable machine. I seemed to have far better success with the constant tension from the cable, rather than the variable resistance of dumbbells.
  3. This weird machine that has you pedal with your arms. Looked really stupid to me, but seemed to greatly help my postural endurance.