05 April, 2013
Your clavicle, also known as the collarbone, is a critical part of your shoulder girdle that connects your deltoids and the pectoralis major. The clavicle acts as stabilizing bone in your skeleton, helping to strengthen your shoulder muscles. Clavicle stretches include workouts that target the pectoralis muscles and the deltoids: chest stretch, neck rotation and lateral neck bend. You can prevent muscle and joint pain in the clavicle area by performing exercises that stretch the clavicle.
Shoulders stretches can be performed standing, seated or bending forward. You do not require any equipment to do shoulder stretches; however, you can use a towel to enhance your stretches. Two main stretches that will stretch your clavicle include interior shoulder stretch and posterior shoulder stretch. For interior shoulder stretch, stand and lift your two arms far back until you feel a stretch. You can hold a rolled towel with your two arms to enhance the stretch. To perform posterior shoulder stretch, lift your right arm across the chest and then hold the elbow of your right arm with your left arm. Push the right elbow gently into the chest until you feel a stretch. Hold the stretch for a minimum of 30 seconds. Repeat with your left arm. Perform five to eight reps for each of the stretches, three times a week.
Neck stretches help in exercising the platysma, a long muscle in the neck. Tension in the neck can cause pain around the clavicle, especially if you spend most of your day seated at a desk looking down or up at a computer. Neck stretches include extension in sitting and rotation in sitting. Sit with your neck and back straight then lower your head backward gently as you look up, until you feel a pain-free stretch. For rotation in sitting, sit with your neck and back straight then turn you head so that your chin touches your right shoulder and you feel a mild stretch. Repeat the rotation with the left side. Perform 10 repetitions every two days.
Back muscles join your clavicle to your shoulder blades and strengthen your shoulders, helping you avoid back pain that results from muscle tension. Back stretches exercise rhomboids and latissimus dorsi muscles that strengthen your upper back. To stretch your upper back, place your hands at the back of your head then move your elbows backwards until you experience a stretch. Perform three reps holding 30 seconds each. For a lower back stretch, lie on your back with your feet flat on the ground and knees bent. Swing your knees to one side, twisting from the hips, not the waist, until you feel a stretch. Repeat to the other side. Perform 10 to 20 reps.
Stretching your clavicle relieves stress, tension and increases the amount of blood flowing to your muscles, making you more flexible. Before you perform any workout, consult your physiotherapist or trainer if you are not sure of proper technique. Engage in warm-up exercises, such as light jogging, prior to starting your workout.
- Hemera Technologies/AbleStock.com/Getty Images