How do I focus on this muscle group? I have a fairly strong back but I still have a tendency for my scapulae to wing. I have been doing rows, deadlifts (just got started on these), pull-ups, shoulder shrugs, and posterior delt work - all with an emphasis of trying to keep the scapulae from winging. I was considering adding snatches after reading some of the latest articles, but I don’t know if those will help the serratus. Any help?
For me I feel them the best with dumbell pullovers(laying across the bench)and stiff arm cable pulldowns (leaning forward a bit and flare your lats to start, keep your head up and chest up)
Instead of using the big lifts (deads, rows etc) to fix winging, work more on rehab exercises first to retrain your serratus anterior (SA) to fire and hold your scapulae in place. By using the big lifts, you are more likely going to use compensation instead of proper SA recruitment. A good exercise to focus on SA is while kneeling on your hands and knees, push yourself up into one shoulder blade at a time (as if pushing that arm into the ground). This will cause a rounding of that shoulder. Hold that position, with scapula fully protracted, and make sure you don’t drop it (as you tire, you will naturally tend to drop. This is when you have to make sure you push back up. Once your form starts to really wane, switch sides. Another exercise for SA rehab is called the “push-up plus”. Pretty much like a regular push up, but you go into a fully protracted position at the end and hold that(once you are done your push up, keep going up!). Try those out for some SA retraining. Hope that helps.
How do I focus on this muscle group? I have a fairly strong back but I still have a tendency for my scapulae to wing. I have been doing rows, deadlifts (just got started on these), pull-ups, shoulder shrugs, and posterior delt work - all with an emphasis of trying to keep the scapulae from winging. I was considering adding snatches after reading some of the latest articles, but I don’t know if those will help the serratus. Any help?[/quote]
From Don Alessi’s article here on T-Mag
The Right Winger
We?re not talking about hockey here, but shoulder problems! The test for scapular winging is this: if you can see or feel the medial angle of the shoulder blade (inside edge of the spine ? between 5 and 11 o?clock), you?ve got winging. Alternately, your scapula is also probably winging if you get stuck in the bottom position on the bench press, in which case you need to fix the winging and get additional serratus work. (The latter can be accomplished with additional military press work and incline front raises.)
Here?s a routine to correct scapular winging:
Push press, barbell: The push press is a shoulder press that utilizes the entire body. Start by standing, with a shoulder-width grip and the barbell resting on anterior delts. Squat one-fourth of the way down to initiate the momentum. Next, press the bar straight over the head to a soft lockout while exploding up on to the toes. Finish by lowering the weight to your shoulders.
L-lateral raise, dumbbell: Same as a traditional lateral raise, except the elbows are bent at 90 degrees during the lift. Additionally, there?s an external rotation motion of the lower arm that follows the 90- degree abduction. In other words, as you complete the “lateral raise” portion of the movement, rotate the lower arm up and outward (while maintaining the 90-degree angle throughout the exercise and keeping the wrists neutral).
Incline front raise, dumbbell, semi-supinated: This is pretty much the same as a conventional front raise, except that you?ll use a semi-supinated grip and you?ll be doing the front raises at an angle. Grab a pair of dumbbells with your palms facing each other. Lie on an incline bench set to 45 degrees. With the elbows slightly bent, raise the dumbbells from the bottom position (at your side) to a perpendicular angle to the bench. Lower the weight under control to a dead stop before proceeding.
If indeed you do have scapular winging, you need to do the following routine 2 times a week for 4 weeks. It should also replace your current back routine:
Exercise Sets Reps Rep speed Rest Interval
A. Push press* 5 3-5 30X 180 sec.
B1** L-lateral raise 3 10-12 501 0 sec.
B2 Incline front raise,DB 3 10-12 301 60 sec.
- Stretch the traps and neck in between sets.
**B1 and B2 means to do the L-lateral raises, and then, without resting, proceed to the incline front raises. You?d do that 3 times.
Thanks guys, this is exactly what I was looking for. I going to try these exercises for a few weeks and see what happens. After reading what you all said, it does sound like the routine I had was more compensatory in nature now that it has been pointed out. Thanks for the advice.