Thursday, February 17, 2011

Table Top Weights Shoulder and Elbow Exercises

Scapula Stabilization/Rotator Cuff Program
Created by Beau Lowery, PT, ATC

1. Y's. Hold weights in a neutral wrist position with your thumbs toward the ceiling. Set your shoulder blades and raise your arms to full flexion. Keep your elbows straight and concentrate on squeezing you shoulder blades together. You can also use just your throwing arm and have your head supported if this positioning causes any neck pain. Do 3 sets to fatigue (approx. 15-20) using between 2-5 lbs. Do not go over 5 lbs.

Start position:

End position:

2. T's. Hold weights in a neutral wrist position. Set your shoulder blades and raise your arms to the side. Keep your elbows straight and concentrate on squeezing you shoulder blades together. You can also use just your throwing arm and have your head supported if this positioning causes any neck pain. Do 3 sets to fatigue (approx. 15-20) using between 2-5 lbs. Do not go over 5 lbs.

Start position:End position:
3. V's. Hold weights in a neutral wrist position. Set your shoulder blades and raise your arms to the side. Keep your elbows straight and concentrate on squeezing you shoulder blades together. You can also use just your throwing arm and have your head supported if this positioning causes any neck pain. Do 3 sets to fatigue (approx. 15-20) using between 2-5 lbs. Do not go over 5 lbs.

Start position: End position:
** Important to understand with the 3 previous exercises you are strengthening the muscles of your shoulder blades as well as your shoulder. If you have neck pain, you can do your throwing arm only by hanging your shoulder off the side of the table with your head supported on the table. Always retract your shoulder blade first, then lift you arm in a pain-free range. Do not try to push through any pain or abnormal sensations. You want to feel a good muscle burn, but no catching or pinching sensation. Also, the reps are very person specific. I want you to feel a good burn the last 3 reps; therefore, if you feel a good burn during reps 7, 8, and 9, stop at 9 instead of 15. I encourage you to start with 2 or 3 lbs and progress with weight when you are able to do 20 reps for 3 sets and do not get fatigued. At that point, increase the weight and adjust your reps. Five pounds is the limit you use from a weight standpoint.

4. Prone external rotation @ 90 degrees of shoulder abduction. Start by lying on your stomach with your shoulder hanging off the edge of the table. Squeeze your shoulder blade back while lifting your arm even with your body. Then externally rotate your shoulder until your forearm is parallel to the floor. Make sure your movements are slow and controlled going up and down through the motion. Do 3 sets to fatigue (approx. 15-20) using between 2-5 lbs. Do not go over 5 lbs.

Start position:Mid position:End position:

5. Side lying external rotation. While lying on your side with a towel under your arm, retract your shoulder blade and slowly lift your arm while maintaining a 90 degree angle @ your elbow. Lift your forearm as seen in the picture below. Do not push through any pinching or painful sensation.

Start position:Mid position:End position:

6. Side lying internal rotation. While lying on your dominant side, slowly lift your arm while maintaining a 90 degree angle @ your elbow. Lift your forearm as seen in the picture below. Do not push through any pinching or painful sensation. Do 3 sets, approx. 15-20 using between 3-7 lbs. Do not go over 7 lbs. Be sure your shoulder is in front and you have no discomfort when going through full internal shoulder rotation. You will probably not feel the same intensity of burn because your internal rotators should be stronger than your external rotators.

Start position:

Mid position:

End position:

7. Supine Shoulder Protraction. While lying on your back and weight in you’re your hand, push your hand toward the ceiling. Your shoulder will actually protract and your hand will move toward the ceiling. The movement comes from your shoulder only and there should be no movement from your elbow.

Start position:End position:

8. Table Top Push Ups. This is a modified way of doing push-up plus except with less stress on the shoulder. Use the same principle as push-up or bench press - never go all the way until your chest touches the table. When you extend your elbow, protract your shoulder blades until you feel the hump in your upper back. Do 2-3 sets of 20 reps.

Start position:

End position:

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