Shoulder stability exercises

The shoulder plays an important role in overhead activities. Athletes in overhead sports like basketball, tennis and volleyball are more prone to shoulder injuries.

Due to the increased risk of overuse injuries, it is important to incorporate exercises that stabilize the shoulder and correct muscle imbalances that can lead to decreased performance and injury.

Shoulder stability exercises strengthen the rotator cuff (Supraspinatus, Infraspinatus, Teres minor, Subscapularis), lower and middle part of the trapezius, rhomboids and the posterior deltoids.

Incorporate shoulder stability exercises into your workout or warm-up to prevent shoulder injuries and enhance performance. The shoulder complex consists off two joints: the scapulathoracic joint (joint formed by rib cage and shoulder blade) and the glenohumeral joint (joint formed by shoulder blade and the upper arm).

The role of the rotator cuff muscles is to stabilize the glenohumeral joint while the prime mover muscles generate power. The rotator cuff muscles have their origin on the scapula. To effectively stabilize the glenohumeral joint they need to operate from a stable scapular base. Balance between the muscles that attach to the scapula and sufficient strength levels of these muscles provide scapular stability.

  • Dumbbell reverse flies

    The dumbbell reverse flies is a beginner exercise that targets the muscles of the posterior shoulder region, the rotator cuff and the scapula retractors. This exercise improves shoulder stability and reduces the change of injury.

  • Side lying external shoulder rotation

    The side lying external shoulder rotation is a beginner exercise to strengthen the rotator cuff and the posterior deltoid. This will improve shoulder stability and prevent injuries.

  • Side lying shoulder flexion

    The side lying shoulder flexion promotes rotator cuff strength and shoulder stability, reducing the risk of shoulder injuries. This exercise is suitable for all fitness levels.

  • Y, T & I

    The Y,T & I is a combination of three exercises, targeting the muscles of the rotator cuff, the posterior shoulder region and the scapula retractors. The Y,T & I is suitable for all fitness levels.

  • Row - external rotation - press

    The row - external rotation - press is a beginner exercise to strengthen the rotator cuff, the scapula retractors and the posterior deltoid. This will improve shoulder stability and prevent injuries.

  • YMCA on stability ball

    The YMCA on stability ball is a combination of four exercises, to strengthen the rotator cuff, the posterior deltoid and the scapula retractors. Balancing on the stability ball emphasizes core stability. This exercise is suitable for intermediate and advanced fitness levels.

  • Shoulder around the clock on stability ball

    The shoulder around the clock on stability ball is an intermediate level exercise to promote rotator cuff strength and shoulder stability. Balancing on the stability ball while lifting one dumbbell places a high demand on the core to maintain proper form.

  • Prone cobra

    The prone cobra is a beginner exercise to strengthen the rotator cuff, the scapula retractors and the posterior deltoid. This will improve shoulder stability and reduce the risk of shoulder injuries.

  • Horizontal shoulder abduction

    The horizontal shoulder abduction is a beginner exercise that targets the muscles of the posterior shoulder region, the rotator cuff and the scapula retractors. The instability of the stability ball requires good balance to maintain proper form.