5 Amazing Shoulder Mobility & Warm-ups for CrossFit®

Written By Ben  |  Training & Recovery 

Today, I’m excited to share my five favorite shoulder mobility drills that double as fantastic warm-up exercises. Whether you're gearing up for pull-ups, snatches, overhead squats, or handstand push-ups, these drills will prepare your shoulders for action.

Let’s dive in!

Equipment You’ll Need:

  • A pull-up bar
  • A set of rings
  • A resistance band
  • A wall

Mix and match based on what you have; you can still get a great workout, even with just one piece of equipment.

1. Dead Hang from Pull-Up Bar

Equipment: Pull-up bar

Start by hanging from a pull-up bar with a wide grip. Make sure your core is engaged and your ribs are pulled down.

Avoid letting your body sag. Gradually bring your hands closer together to increase the stretch. Alternate between pronated (overhand) and supinated (underhand) grips to target different shoulder muscles.

Aim to accumulate hanging time, starting wide and working towards a narrower grip to enhance your shoulder flexibility.

2. Ring Fall Through

Equipment: Rings

Set the rings to about hip height. Stand slightly behind them with your core tight. Let yourself fall through and under the rings, maintaining straight arms and a tight core.

This drill emphasizes keeping your ribs down and your core engaged, allowing your shoulders to reach their full range of motion.

Perform several slow reps to warm up effectively.

3. Overhead Carry

Equipment: Dumbbell or kettlebell

Press a dumbbell or kettlebell overhead while keeping your core tight and ribs down. Walk around, ensuring your elbow remains locked out and your shoulders active.

This drill is excellent for preparing your shoulders for movements like jerks and snatches, where a stable overhead position is crucial.

Switch arms and repeat, gradually increasing the weight as you become more comfortable.

4. Banded Wall Slides

Equipment: Resistance band, wall

Fold the band in half and hold it slightly wider than shoulder width. Stand about a foot away from the wall, place your hands against it at 90 degrees, and slide them up while maintaining tension on the band.

Keep your core tight to avoid leaning back. When you reach your maximum height, pull your hands away from the wall. This drill strengthens your shoulder muscles and improves your overhead range of motion.

5. Wall Slides

Equipment: Wall

Stand with your back against the wall, feet slightly away from it. Press your lower back flat against the wall by engaging your core.

Try to keep your forearms against the wall and slide your arms up and down. This is a challenging drill that targets your shoulder mobility and core stability.

The goal is to keep your core engaged and avoid letting your lower back arch.

To Summarize

These five shoulder mobility drills are essential for anyone looking to improve their shoulder flexibility and strength. They prepare your shoulders for a variety of movements, ensuring better performance and reducing the risk of injury.

For more resources and detailed guides, check out our free ultimate shoulder warm-up guide at wodprep.com/guide/shoulder-mobility.

If you want to dive deeper, consider joining WODprep Academy, where we offer over 25 training courses to master various CrossFit skills.

Remember, consistency is key.

Integrate these drills into your routine, and you'll notice significant improvements in your shoulder mobility and overall performance.

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