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Best Exercises for Strengthening Rotator Cuff, Serratus Anterior and Lower-Traps?

After taking a good look through some of the articles on the site, I’ve decided to try and make improving upper-body posture a priority. Cressey’s writing, in particular, has been of interest, and I’ve been trying to determine the best way to incorporate different things into my routine. Specifically, I’m looking to strengthen my rotator cuff and serratus anterior, as well as my lower-traps. I’ve managed to draw up a list of what seem to be the best exercises, and was wondering which ones and which combinations, if any, have managed to help anyone increase strength in the regions I mentioned…

  • Face Pulls; Scapular Push-Ups; Hanging Scapular Retrations; Dumbbell Rotations; Wall Slides; Dumbbell Protraction; Overhead Shrug; Scapation Lateral Raise.

Are there any there in particular which anyone can vouch for or recommend? What’s more, does anyone have any ideas as to the best way to start placing them into a routine? Appreciate any help you guys are willing to give.

[quote]watermelon_2001 wrote:
Are there any there in particular which anyone can vouch for or recommend? What’s more, does anyone have any ideas as to the best way to start placing them into a routine? Appreciate any help you guys are willing to give.[/quote]
Power Snatch, Hang Snatch, Dumbbell Snatch, etc…

I could tell you what works for me, but that may not be what works for you. You’re just going to have to experiment. Be sure you give each one a fair chance (i.e. don’t just do it for a week and then call it the best or a no go).

I use most of those movements with my kyphotic clients.

I use them as filler exercises between sets as they don’t cause much CNS fatigue. Or if you want to use them as a dynamic warmup, just make sure you stretch and foam roll chest/lats prior to doing so. It’s really tough to correctly activate/strengthen a muscle if the antagonist is tight. (reciprocal inhibition - fancy term I picked up from Cressey or Robertson) Do long stretches, 30-40 seconds or so.

Also, another movement I like but I don’t know if you have there, I could be wrong, are high face pulls. Don’t pull your hands law level, but instead pull them up overhead, still keeping your elbows back. This will hit the external rotators harder as opposed to the jawline version, which will hit the mid back a little harder. But, put most of these movements in your workout if you really want to hammer postural muscles.

Hope this helps man.