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The Importance of Overhead Mobility

by Brian Wolfe, DPT, OCS

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In our last post, we talked about how to test your overhead (OH) mobility and some of the reasons why it’s important to assess. But why is it important to work on your mobility regularly? Here are some fundamental reasons to consistently improve OH mobility.

Prevent Injury

It's very important to perform OH lifts - such as snatches, OH presses and clean and jerks - with proper technique. Further, if you don't have proper mobility, it will be impossible to achieve these movements without compensation. Our bodies are incredible, compensating machines, however compensations will eventually lead to overuse injuries.

Improve Performance

OH lifts required in Olympic lifting, CrossFit and bodybuilding can be refined with efficiency and increasing strength. Proper mobility is required to move and lift more efficiently. Proper stability is required to limit overuse injuries and increase strength with increasing frequency of exercise. Optimizing mobility and stability together will improve your overall performance in these fitness activities.

Better Aging

As we age, we naturally begin to lose mobility and strength. However, if we continue to focus on these areas, we can decrease the progression of their decline. Practicing different mobility exercises will lead to optimal aging and allow you to maintain your fitness ability over time.

Check out the following video to learn more about why practicing OH mobility is important:

For more on the importance of improving overhead mobility, or sport-specific questions, please reach out to speak with a physical therapist!

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