There are certain conditions women are more prone to than men. This is due to many factors, including differing movements and body structure between males and females. Among the conditions we see more often in females is a condition called laxity. Laxity is essentially when joints are looser than the average person’s joints. Shoulders and hips are two areas where this can commonly happen.
What makes women more prone to shoulder and hip laxity?
Women are more likely to have laxity in general, because their soft tissues are more likely to be looser. There is also a correlation between sport and laxity. Women tend to participate in more sports that emphasize flexibility, such as:
What to do if you think you have laxity
But the good news is, active women can get ahead of this issue by being aware of the symptoms and doing strengthening exercises. Some of the best strengthening exercises target specific areas:
These muscle groups are all important for making your hip mechanics more stable. For a shoulder, strengthening the rotator cuff can help to stabilize the shoulder. Lighter weight lifting exercises can help with this.
Try some of these shoulder and hip exercises:
- Stand facing a wall, about 12 to 18 inches away.
- Place your hands on the wall at shoulder height.
- Slowly bend your elbows and bring your face toward the wall, moving your hips and shoulders forward together.
- Push slowly back to the starting position.
- Start with 5 repetitions and work up to 8 to 12.
- Rest for a minute, and repeat the exercise.
Note: For this exercise, you will need elastic exercise material, such as an exercise band.
- Put the band around a solid object, such as a bedpost, at about waist level. Each hand should hold an end of the band.
- With your elbows at your sides and bent to 90 degrees, pull the band back to move your shoulder blades toward each other. Return to the starting position.
- Repeat 3×15.
Shoulder Blade Squeeze
- While standing with your arms at your sides, squeeze your shoulder blades together and down. Do not raise your shoulders up as you are squeezing.
- Hold for 6 seconds.
- Repeat 8 to 12 times every hour.
- Lie on your side, with your affected hip on top. Keep your feet and knees together and your knees bent.
- Raise your top knee, but keep your feet together. Do not let your hips roll back. Your legs should open up like a clamshell.
- Hold for 6 seconds.
- Slowly lower your knee back down. Rest for 10 seconds.
- Repeat 8 to 12 times.
- Switch legs and repeat steps 1 through 5, even if only one hip is sore.