Want Better Shoulder Mobility, Aerialists?

Want a great exercise to improve your shoulder mobility in the exact ways that you need it for aerial training? Woodchoppers are an amazing preparatory exercise for aerial, backbending, and forearm stands. I don’t usually include it in mobility classes, because folks don’t have access to aerial equipment, but it’s pretty fab. It also works in the weight room using a cable pulley systrem.

This exercise draws from the Gyrotonic exercise of the same name, done on the pulley tower and on long chains on the Archway.


So how do you do it?

  1. Try to keep the elbows in drawing toward each other to maintain shoulder external rotation.
  2. Initiate the movement by closing the ribs (stretching the lats) and then push the elbows away from you (a “serratus push”) before drawing the elbows down toward the ground. Imagine squeezing oranges in your armpits!
  3. Keep your scapula wrapped around the outside of your armpits the whole time.
  4. To progress, lower the bar.

Want more exercises like this to help your trapeze training? Want to get similar drills for your aerial silks training or aerial hoop skills? Join me over in The Parish, a membership for aerialists and aerial coaches.

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