I get asked a lot what I do for shoulder injury prevention and rehab. I had some pretty severe nerve impingement in 2016 which left me unable to lift a pitcher of water above shoulder height. It was something that was pretty scary having just opened my academy in Broomfield. Because of the tingling in my index finger I was very worried that it was an issue in my cervical spine. Due to the los of strength, I got an MRI for my neck. Luckily they said that my neck looked okay and that left nerve impingement in my shoulder. I was doing some shoulder workouts like what was prescribed for baseball pitchers, but wasn’t seeing any improvement.
Luckily I listened to my wife. She is big into flexibility and contortionist routines and mentioned that one of the people she had some dvds from had produced one on shoulder strength. This person works with performers for cirque du soleil so I figured if she could get those people healthy, then getting shoulders for BJJ healthy would be easy.
Long story short here is that DVD: https://vimeo.com/ondemand/shoulderschool/148974072
It is an hour long DVD that you can rent for $3.99 or own for $18.99. I honestly did the rental and with some good notetaking got a little shoulder workout that I can knock out in less than 5 minutes. I think the best moves in the dvd are the “drawing the sword” from the front, but even better from behind. I haven’t met a BJJ player that I have shown that to that isn’t pretty wide eyed at the activation of the infraspinatus muscle in the shoulder. I believe that this rental was the best $4 I have ever spent in my life.
I have bought these bands (not that they are amazing and usually do break eventually, but whatever). https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07Y2XXFF2/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_search_asin_title?ie=UTF8&th=1
I always tell myself that even if I am pressed for time, it is better to miss a round of training and knock out my shoulder work. Now my shoulders are in good shape, honestly better than in my 20s.
In class we always do pushups into side planks which anecdotally have really helped reduced the amount of shoulder injuries we have seen over the last few years. That is an exercise I will do if I don’t have access to my bands.