Best Shoulder Exercises

So many sports magazines and channels have given much publicity to a Basketball player named Dwight Howard.  Have you seen the size of his shoulders? Looks like his trunk is holding 3 heads! Many people are searching the web because they are looking for his workouts to get arms like his.

Spring is in the air and summer is just around the corner, so its time to start getting in shape for your summer vacation trips to the beach. One part of the body that gets lots of attention is the arms because we all want tank top arms! What are they? Well just as it says arms that are worthy of showing while wearing a tank top, much like Dwight Howard in his basketball jersey.

To strengthen the shoulders, most people work on the Deltoid muscles.  This is good, however many of these people also develop shoulder injuries. The shoulder does not start at the sleeves, it starts behind us at our shoulder blades.

Strengthening the Deltoids without strengthening your shoulder blades muscles is like building a house over sand, the foundation will not be able to support the structure and over time it will fail.

As mentioned in the previous blog, the posterior shoulder muscles are often neglected during exercises and these are the ones that help prevent shoulder injuries like impingement syndrome, rotator cuff and biceps tendonitis.

The following exercises will help you build strong muscles to have “tank top arms” and help prevent injury at the same time.

  • Full can scaption

Holding light weights (3-5 lbs) on either hand with thumbs pointing up.

Raise arms up to shoulder height with your arms slightly forward from horizontal as if creating the letter V with your arms.

Slowly lower and repeat

  • Scapular stability

Place a small against the wall at shoulder height with elbow bent.

Press on the ball and while maintaining pressure through your hand, move the ball in circles counter clockwise and clockwise 10 repetitions of each.

Then slide the ball up approximately 3-4 inches and repeat.

  • Prone I, W, T progression

Lie over the exercise ball, keep your hands by your side and maintain your trunk straight and rigid (I).

Pull your shoulder blades back and tighten the muscles in the middle of your back, hold 2 seconds and repeat 10 times.

Do the same with your hands on either side of your ears (W) and arms stretched out to the side (T)

  • Serratus push ups

Start in a pushup “plank” position with elbows straight and hands directly under shoulders.

While elbows are straight, lower your trunk and pinch your shoulder blades together, then push your trunk up and round your shoulder blades forward but keeping your elbows straight the entire time.

You should feel the entire motion from your shoulder blades.

Here is a video of the exercises described above:

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