Learn tips & techniques to strengthen critical shoulder muscles. Try them out at the gym or at home!
Rotator Cuff Strengthening
The shoulder is a ball and socket joint and the rotator functions to keep that ball centered in the socket joint. The rotator cuff is strengthened with rotational exercises.
- Use a theraband for resistance and rotate your arm in and then in the opposite direction away from your body.
- Keep your elbow at your side and shoulder blades squeezed together. (3 sets of 15)
The shoulder blade (scapula) is the foundation of the shoulder joint; therefore it is important that the muscles that control how the shoulder blade moves are strong.
- Improve scapular mobility and strength by kneeling on hands and knees and move down so your shoulder blades come together and then push up so that they move apart. (3 sets of 15)
Rotator Cuff Plus Scapular Strengthening
Combine rotator cuff and scapular strengthening with a modified row.
- Move your arms back by pulling your shoulder blades together.
- At the end of the motion, rotate your arms back as if to pour out a glass of water. (3 sets of 15)
Overhead Shoulder Strengthening
Rotator cuff and scapular strength is important for overhead activities.
- Rest your arms against the wall at shoulder level.
- Stretch the band apart and push into the wall.
- Slide your arms up the wall, maintaining tension on the band.
- At the top of the range of motion, lift your arms off the wall slightly. (3 sets of 15)
Dynamic Shoulder Strengthening
Hold a band in both hands with your arms straight in front of you.
- Stretch the band apart so your arms make a T.
- Then with your hands offset slightly, stretch the band in a diagonal pattern. (3 sets of 15)