Shoulder Strengthening Part II
by Kevin Roberts, ATC, M.Ed.
Summer is quickly approaching and so are summer camps for football and baseball. It's been a long sports year and at this point most athletesí shoulders are tired and weak. The following shoulder exercises are a nice break from traditional internal/external exercises for shoulder stability, always a welcome change for athletes who train year round. Here at Team PT, we like to utilize plyometric balls for not just throwing against trampolines. In this section, I use a small 2-3 lbs. soft plyo ball and a mat. In case you do not have a plyo ball, just use a small weight or can of soup.
The following are my Plyo x 4 exercises:
Plyo x4 - #1
The athlete lies prone on a mat or bed holding the plyo ball, arm extended, lateral to the body. Now rapidly release and catch the plyo ball 20x while keeping the arm fully extended.
Plyo x4 - #2
Lie prone again with the arm at a 90 degree bend at your elbow and shoulder. Repeat the same instructions as above 20x.
Plyo x4 - #3
Lie on your side with your elbow bent at 90 degrees touching your side. Now repeat the same instructions as above 20x.
Plyo x4 - #4
Lie on your side again and fully extend your arm laterally from your body. Once again, repeat the same instructions as above 20x.
The rapid release and catch combo targets the dynamic stabilizers of the shoulder. This exercise fatigues the athlete quickly especially when done #1-#4 without taking a break. Do the above exercises 20x each, once thru and that is 1 round. Have the athlete complete 3-4 rounds of this with an ample break in between sets. Good luck and enjoy!