Reduce Your Bicep Pain With These Mobility Exercises

Recovery | Strength & Conditioning

The bicep muscle is one of the most important for your upper body strength. An injury to this hardworking muscle can make day-to-day tasks difficult. If you are suffering from bicep pain or overall soreness to your arm and shoulders these three exercises may help.

// 3 mobility exercises to Mobilize Your biceps

It’s that time of year when people want to show off their summer ready six pack and, like Ron Burgundy in Anchorman, hand out “tickets to the gun show” by baring their biceps.

But even if you dedicated a lot of your coronavirus at-home workout time to get ready for the brief sun’s out, guns out period, your upper arms might still need a little help. 

Not necessarily in terms of their size or ability to bang out umpteen curls, rows, and chin-ups, but rather with regard to their range of motion and overall tissue health.

If you’re experiencing excess soreness, dealing with tightness in your elbows and/or shoulders, or just haven’t mobilized this area for a while, try spending 10 minutes on the following bicep exercises once or twice a week.

1. Bicep Scrape

Instrument Assisted Soft Tissue Mobilization (IASTM) used to be a technique that you’d have to visit a physical therapist or chiropractor to benefit from.

But thanks to newer gear like the Wave Tool, you can take advantage of this adhesion-removing, circulation-promoting technique.

Just be sure to go slow, not to press too hard, and stop if you start seeing a friction rash developing. To scrape your biceps:

1) Lubricate your upper arm with lotion

2) Grip your Wave Tool or other instrument in your left hand and, starting just above your elbow, scrape up your biceps toward your shoulder

3) Perform 10 to 12 full scrapes upward, then reverse the motion 

4) Switch sides. If your tool has different edges and surfaces, try switching between them to find the best fit for your biceps.

Wave tool biceps scrape

2. Chin-up Hang

If you’ve been using compound exercises to build up your biceps as well as isolation movements, then chances are you’ve been doing your fair share of chin-ups.

Feed some slack into those overly-tight tissues by performing this static version:

1) Grip a pull-up bar with a chin-up grip (palms facing you shoulder-width apart)

2) Slowly lower yourself until both arms are extended in the bottom position of the chin-up

3) Hang for 20 to 30 seconds

4) Take a 20 second break and then repeat four or five times. You can vary the stimulus by changing the position and width of your hands.

pull up hang bicep mobility exercise

3. Biceps Opener with Stick

As beneficial as a static exercise like the chin-up hang can be, it’s also helpful to add in a little dynamic movement to challenge the biceps in a different way.

Enter this opener, for which you can use a product like a Mobility Stick, a wooden dowel, or a length of PVC pipe that will set you back about two bucks at your local hardware store (5 feet long, 1 inch diameter is about right): 

1) Get into a lunge position

2) Place the bottom of the stick on the ground next to your front foot

3) Put your hand that’s on the same side on top of the stick

4) Slowly move your active arm backward until you feel a slight stretch in your biceps, making sure you keep enough pressure on the stick so it doesn’t slip

5) Hold for five to 10 seconds, return to the starting position, and repeat five to 10 times

6) Switch sides

Biceps opener with stick mobility exercise



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