Some of the best rotator cuff muscle exercises involve external rotation with dumbbells or cables.
This page has pictures and instructions for prone external rotations with dumbbells.
Prone simply means face down. When you are faced down, gravity can resist the weights to strengthen your rotator cuff.
External rotation is when the shoulders rotate backwards or away from the body. This is an important motion to strengthen to improve shoulder stability.
Here are pictures of prone dumbbell external rotations.
Starting Position: Begin by lying face down on a bench. Raise your shoulders out to about 90 degrees and let your forearms lie perpendicular to the floor.
Form: Exhale and rotate your shoulders so that the weights move in-line with your ears. Hold briefly at the top and then slowly return to the starting position.
Personal Trainer Tips: This exercise focuses on the small rotator cuff muscles, so you will likely use a light weight-- usually between 1-5 pounds.
Form is very important during this exercise. If you have a stiff shoulder or tight chest muscles, you will likely have limited range of motion.
Stretching your shoulders and chest before performing this exercise can improve your range of motion and enhance the benefits of this exercise.
Yours in Health,
Dr. Charles PT/PT
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