Climbing Injury Prevention – Shoulder Impingement

Shoulder Impingement Rehabilitation Program Climbing


The tendons in the shoulder slide through a very narrow passageway and attach to the shoulder bone. Impingement occurs when the space between the bones in this passageway is reduced. This can occur from repetitively moving the shoulder into a stressful or suboptimal position. When this occurs, the bones

in the shoulder pinch down on the tendons and cause shoulder impingement. You should be aware of the dangerous movements that can lead to shoulder impingement. These movements include hanging on your arms during rest stances, climbing with a hunched posture and strenuous overhead reaching.


Start position: Wrap a full-length resistance band around your torso Bend your knees and hips and lean your trunk forward to approximately 45 degrees. The closer to the floor that you can angle your trunk, the more challenging the exercise will be.

Sasha DiGiulian letter T Photo A

Sasha DiGiulian Letter T Photo A

Sasha DiGiulian letter T Photo B

Sasha DiGiulian Letter T Photo B

How to Wrap the Band

Sasha DiGiulian Band Wrap A

Sasha DiGiulian Band Wrap A

Sasha DiGiulian Band Wrap B

Sasha DiGiulian Band Wrap B

Sasha DiGiulian Band Wrap C

Sasha DiGiulian Band Wrap C

A. Start with the arms straight down by your side and palms rotated forward.

B. Engage your shoulder blade muscles and bring your arms into the air to form the letter T. Make sure that the thumbs stay pointed into the air.

What It Does

Activates the middle trapezius (T), lower trapezius (Y) and the rotator cuff (L) muscles that provide support and protect your shoulder while climbing. The bent knee and forward trunk for position simulates more closely the body during overhang climbing.


3 sets of 8 repetitions once per day.

Learn More About Rock Climbing Injuries

Looking for more information on rehabilitating climbing injuries? Check out the the self-help shoulder impingement protocol.

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