If you love something you take care of it. Take care of your shoulders and they will help you fly!

Shoulder injuries are all too common in pole dancing. Whether it’s from a pole spin in twisted grip, working on that shoulder mount or even that sultry exotic shoulder roll, many of us have experienced some sort of pain, strain or injury from the beautifully intense form of training that pole dancing (inevitably) is. It’s hard to tell your instructor and even yourself that you have to take time off from practice because of a shoulder injury.

So our very own movement and fitness specialist, Lorae Metrolis, is here with some sound advice that has helped many polers not only recover from shoulder injuries but also help with strength, conditioning, and the most important thing, SHOULDER INJURY PREVENTION! OH, and did we mention she’s also a bad-ass pole dancer?! So yeah, she knows what’s up!

Here are some of Lorae’s tips to help your shoulders stay strong and injury free (in her own words!). 

The first tip is to strengthen and condition the back of your shoulders (posterior chain). Work this into your conditioning classes, at home practice or warm-ups. If you want to avoid injury and finally get that shoulder mount, put these three exercises into your day!

1 – Band Lat Pulldown or pull-ups

2 – Wall Angels

3 – Planks… The real way!

In pain??

Leave the ice for your cocktail and follow my MELT protocol:

Most important…

ALWAYS MOVE! Even if it’s just a recovery day.

My favorite stretches for shoulders:


1. Overhead stick pass

    • Step 1 – Using a fitness bar or broom/mop handle, grip the bar wide on both sides.
    • Step 2 – Hold the bar in front of you with straight arms.
    • Step 3 – Raise the bar up and over your head, keeping the arms straight.
    • Step 4 – Lower arms behind you, keeping the arms straight
    • Step 5 – Reverse, and bring the arms back to the starting position.


2. Thoracic (T-spine) rotation

This will get the shoulders and spine moving and get the blood flowing.  

Using a fitness bar or even the stick/handle portion of a broom or mop (as seen here, just make sure it’s removable so the weight distribution is even)… follow the visuals for each step in the exercise and repeat on BOTH sides.

Thoracic Spine Rotation Stretch 1

Step 1 – Thoracic Spine Rotation. Start center.

Thoracic Spine Rotation Stretch Step 2

Step 2 – Thoracic Spine Rotation Stretch. Tilt upper body to one side.

Thoracic Spine Rotation Stretch Step 3

Step 3 – Thoracic Spine Rotation Stretch. Twist torso and look up. Repeat on the other side.

Lastly, don’t leave home without your Lacrosse ball.

Many of us have used it on our backs and shoulders, but have you ever tried using it on your pecs? These muscles are used every day from staring at your phone, driving, to pole dancing. You’ll be surprised at how tight and sore they are! Try giving them a release!

Take time to do all these foundational strengtheners and releases and it will help maintain shoulder health and reduce the number of days off due to injury.  Love your bodies, because it will take you to places you’ve never imagined.

WIth love from your Dollhouse Witch Doctor (and fellow dancing doll!),

Lorae Metrolis — Postural & Functional Movement Specialist
Owner and Founder of Foundation Movement & Fitness

Movement specialist Lorae Metrolis

The Dollhouse Fitness is a pole dance studio located in North San Diego, California. We are dedicated to empowering women through dance and aerial arts in a safe, body positive space. We offer pole dance classes, flexibility training classes, and more! Come move, grind, fly, and dance with us at 535 Encinitas Blvd, Suite 104, Encinitas, CA 92024. PH: (858) 442-3799 — Contact us!