The Practice Notebook

flutist Zara Lawler shares tips on learning music

Physical Warm-ups: Shoulder Stretches


This is the second in a series of posts about physical warm-ups. For a little bit of intro, please see the first post. For the entire series to date, please click on “Physical Warm-ups” under the heading “Categories” on the right side-bar.

Today, we’ll do two shoulder stretches.

The first will  get you moving, and is that old standby, the shoulder roll.

The second stretch is one of my favorites, but I don’t know what it’s called. For now, I’ve given it the title “The Nameless Shoulder Stretch.” I learned it from a chiropractor in Hong Kong, when I was playing in the orchestra there.

It may be familiar to many of you from other athletic pursuits, but please watch carefully as proper form for this stretch is the key to getting the most out of it.

A Special Note to Flutists

Have you ever had that “flute pain?” The one just under your shoulder blade? The Nameless Shoulder Stretch healed me of that pain. Watch the video below for a little bit more about that:

PS. If you think of a good name for the Nameless Shoulder Stretch, let me know!  I’m currently leaning toward “The Reverse Volleyball Stretch,” but I’m open to suggestion.

One Comment to

“Physical Warm-ups: Shoulder Stretches”

  1. On August 27th, 2009 at 8:48 pm Shari Adams Says:

    Thank you for posting these stretches – I’ve been finding them incredibly helpful.
    Shari in NM

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