1. Start with the pelvis.
To lock out overhead the pelvis should be in a posterior tilt, meaning glutes engaged and less extension of the low back. It gives your body stability to achieve the correct position. Most people cheat the position by extending the back. This only leads to compensation and soon injury.
If you breathe correctly with your diaphragm this inhibits your pec minor. The pec minor pulls your shoulder blade forward and will limit full shoulder range of motion when it's working too hard.
3. Armpits facing forward.
Check your movement in a mirror. If you cannot fully see your armpit, your shoulder is rotating too far inward. This is very difficult for athletes in OH squats and snatches. You will see poor positioning when you cannot see the armpit and you see too much of the chest instead. This is faulty.
4. Activate the stabilizers.
Before you train, it is imperative to warm up the muscles of the shoulder blade. These muscles run from your trunk to the shoulder blade. They allow for proper stabilization so that the blade sits on your back in the correct place, when they are working it allows for proper shoulder mobility, when they are not the arm bounces around like a ping pong in the socket and searches for stability.
5. Have an overhead reach party, 5 times a day for 30 seconds.
This is my favorite. Most people are locked into sitting at a desk most of the day. This position is a perfect one to get those lats way too tight. When the lats get tight, the arm doesn't want to go overhead. Instead, change position 5 times a day and get those arms overhead and let those shoulders move. Simple and easy. If you wait until you warm up after 8 hours of sitting, good luck getting that range of motion. Instead put an OH stimulus on your shoulders routinely.
This was a guest post courtesy of Dr. Lauren Polivka. You can learn more about movement, repair and recovery by visiting her website here - lpdpt.com