10 Best Rotator Cuff Exercises for Strengthening

Hi, I'm Doctor Jo, a licensed Physical Therapist and Doctor of Physical Therapy. I hope you enjoy my video demos of stretches & exercises for common injuries and syndromes. If you have a question, just ask. Be safe. Have fun. And I hope you feel better soon.

Purchase Rotator Cuff Exercises WorksheetThese rotator cuff exercises are not only for the rotator cuff muscles (supraspinatus, infraspinatus, teres minor, and subscapularis), but they are also for many of the muscles around the shoulder and that connect to the scapula. They all work together, so it’s important to exercise all the muscles, not just the specific rotator cuff muscles.

The first set of exercises are pendulums. These are circles, side to side, and front to back. They really help open up the shoulder joint and get all the muscles warmed up.

The next set of exercises are isometric exercises. These are great for when you are on precautions and are not suppose to do movements with the shoulder or when the movement hurts too much to do. Shoulder internal and external rotation isometrics are an effective way to start strengthening the muscles gently.

Now you will do internal and external rotation exercises with a weight. These can be done lying on your side, and are a great next step once the isometric exercises become easy.

Now you will do Is, Ts, Ys, and Ws. These are some of the best ways to strengthen your thoracic back, or the upper back.

Then you have rows and bear hugs with a resistive band. Both of these do a great job strengthening the shoulder and helping with stability of the shoulder.

Serratus punches can be done several ways, but an easy way to do them is with a resistive band. When the serratus muscle is weak, it can cause scapula winging. This can cause a lot of shoulder instability and pain.

Finally, you will strengthen your biceps. The long head of the bicep comes up into the shoulder under the supraspinatus, and it attaches to the labrum. So it’s very important to keep strong as well.

Related Videos:

Rotator Cuff Exercises with Resistive Bands

Rotator Cuff Exercises with Weights


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