Rotator Cuff Exercises

Article by Jess Clarey

Why are Rotator Cuff Exercises Important?

Many muscles are involved in shoulder movement and all work together, but strengthening the rotator cuff is especially important. Your rotator cuff is the main stabiliser of the shoulder joint.

If the ball of the upper arm is not kept centred, abnormal stress is placed on surrounding tissue and may cause gradual injury. Strengthening the rotator cuff helps prevents common rotator cuff injuries including tendonitis, rotator cuff tears, and shoulder impingement syndrome.

Age-related changes in rotator cuff tendons leave them less elastic and more susceptible to injury. There is also a gradual loss of muscle mass that occurs with ageing, which can be counteracted with strengthening exercises.

What are your Rotator Cuff Muscles?

Rotator Cuff

The supraspinatus is located at the top of the shoulder and abducts the shoulder - it raises the upper arm and moves it away from the body.

The subscapularis is at the front of the shoulder - it internally rotates the shoulder.

The infraspinatus and teres minor are in the back of the shoulder - they externally rotate the shoulder.

Though each rotator cuff muscle moves the shoulder in a separate direction, though they all work together to stabilise the shoulder joint.

The long-head of biceps tendon that runs over the top of the humerus and connects at the top of the shoulder joint also helps stabilise the shoulder joint. Overloading the biceps by lifting something heavy may cause biceps tendonitis (also called shoulder tendonitis). Strengthening the biceps helps prevent injury.

Strengthening all the muscles of the rotator cuff is important but premature strengthening can delay healing and cause more pain. For specific advice regarding injury-appropriate rotator cuff strengthening, it is highly recommended that you consult the professional advice of an experienced shoulder physiotherapist.

Scapular Stabilisation Exercises

Rotator cuff exercises are rarely effective in isolation. You should have your scapular stability assessed and undertake scapular stabilisation exercises to address any deficiencies. Your scapulohumeral rhythm should also be assessed and corrective exercises prescribed. You should seek the professional advice of an experienced shoulder physiotherapist to have your shoulder accurately assessed and managed.

More info: 

Scapular stabilisation exercises

Scapulohumeral rhythm exercises

Call PhysioWorks

Book Online

Rotator Cuff Treatment Options

  • Early Injury Treatment
  • Avoid the HARM Factors
  • Soft Tissue Injury? What are the Healing Phases?
  • What to do after a Muscle Strain or Ligament Sprain?
  • Acupuncture and Dry Needling
  • Sub-Acute Soft Tissue Injury Treatment
  • Scapular Stabilisation Exercises
  • Rotator Cuff Exercises
  • Shoulder Exercises
  • Biomechanical Analysis
  • Proprioception & Balance Exercises
  • Agility & Sport-Specific Exercises
  • Medications?
  • Real Time Ultrasound Physiotherapy
  • Soft Tissue Massage
  • Brace or Support
  • Electrotherapy & Local Modalities
  • Heat Packs
  • Joint Mobilisation Techniques
  • Kinesiology Tape
  • Neurodynamics
  • Physiotherapy Instrument Mobilisation (PIM)
  • Prehabilitation
  • Scapulohumeral Rhythm Exercises
  • Strength Exercises
  • Stretching Exercises
  • Supportive Taping & Strapping
  • TENS Machine
  • Video Analysis
  • Yoga
  • FAQs about Rotator Cuff Injuries

  • Common Physiotherapy Treatment Techniques
  • What is Pain?
  • Physiotherapy & Exercise
  • When Should Diagnostic Tests Be Performed?
  • Massage Styles and their Benefits
  • What Causes Post-Exercise Muscular Pain?
  • Can Kinesiology Taping Reduce Your Swelling and Bruising?
  • How Much Treatment Will You Need?
  • Rotator Cuff: What is it?
  • Sports Injury? What to do? When?
  • What are the Common Massage Therapy Techniques?
  • What are the Early Warning Signs of an Injury?
  • What Causes Rotator Cuff Impingement & Bursitis?
  • What is a Tendinopathy?
  • What is a TENS Machine?
  • What is Chronic Pain?
  • What is Nerve Pain?
  • What is Sports Physiotherapy?
  • What is the Shoulder Impingement Zone?
  • What is your Scapulohumeral Rhythm?
  • What's the Benefit of Stretching Exercises?
  • When Can You Return to Sport?
  • Why Kinesiology Tape Helps Reduce Swelling and Bruising Quicker
  • Call PhysioWorks

    Book Online

    Rotator Cuff Products Available Online

    Rotator Cuff Disease

    Rotator Cuff Injuries

  • AC Joint Injury
  • Bicep Tendonitis
  • Bursitis Shoulder
  • Cramps
  • Dislocated Shoulder
  • DOMS - Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness
  • Muscle Strain
  • Overuse Injuries
  • Rotator Cuff Calcific Tendinitis
  • Rotator Cuff Syndrome
  • Rotator Cuff Tear
  • Shoulder Arthritis
  • Shoulder Impingement
  • Shoulder Tendonitis
  • Swimmer's Shoulder
  • Call PhysioWorks

    Book Online

    Last updated 19-Jan-2018 08:48 PM

    Receive Special Offers and the Latest Injury Information

    Enter Details Below to Signup:



     

     

    PhysioWorks does not endorse companies or products who choose to advertise on this website. Advertising revenue supports the free access to our educational content and its updates. Check out the links below for more specific health information from your trusted PhysioWorks team.

     

    Receive Special Offers and the Latest Injury Information

    Enter Details Below to Signup: