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How can I strengthen my rotator cuff?

While standing on an exercise band and holding the handles, reach your arms out to your sides and bring your hands as high as you can -- but not more than shoulder height. Rotate arms clockwise in small circles (about the size of a cantaloupe) 25 times, then switch direction and rotate arms counterclockwise 25 times.

There are two types of exercises that you can use to strengthen your rotator cuff- isolated exercises and integrated exercises.  Isolated exercises are designed to specifically target each of the individual muscles that make up the rotator cuff (supraspinatus, infraspinatus, teres minor, and subscapularis) and are usually performed as rehabilitation or reconditioning exercises when one or more of the rotator cuff muscles has been injured or identified as being weak. Typical isolated exercises recommended for the rotator cuff are shoulder internal and external rotation which can performed with light resistance tubing/bands, cables, or dumbbells if positioned side-lying on a bench/table or the floor. Integrated exercises are designed to strengthen not only the individual muscles that make up the rotator cuff, but also other muscles that stabilize the shoulder blades. Integrated exercises are an excellent way to strengthen the rotator cuff muscles because they require the shoulder and back muscles to work together, just as they do during regular, functional movement. An example of an integrated exercise for the rotator cuff is the ball combo I. Use the technique described below to perform this excersie. Lie on your stomach on top of a stability ball with your legs extended and toes on the floor. Before beginning, extend your arms in front of your body, contract your glutes, and lift your chest off the ball, being careful not to arch your back or jut your head forward.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.