Upper Crossed Syndrome II

With upper crossed syndrome the first thing we need to work on is releasing the over-active area including the pectoralis complex as well as the levator scapula and upper traps.  There are several methods of decreasing the tone in the over-active group.  Soft tissue work is by far my favorite method.  That includes various forms of rolling, as well as …

Floor Angels

My post today is of our shoulder mobility exercise called floor angels. [youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wHYRevvAsPg] Start with the knees bent and the feet flat on the floor. We start the hands at the ears and extend all the way up over the head by reaching out as far as possible. Have the athletes try to keep their arms completely flat on the floor …

Sleeper Stretch

Many of the athletes associated with throwing sports have experience with the sleeper stretch.  The sleeper stretch is for those with glenohumeral internal rotation deficits commonly known as GIRD.  This problem occurs most often in overhead throwing athletes.  Every time an athlete throws a ball there are huge distraction forces that occur at the release of the ball.  This repetitive stress causes …

The Scap Dip

A great movement for training scapular depression is the scap dip.  Scap depression is extremely important for shoulder health as well as stability.  Depression helps to keep the scapulae out of a rounded over, and pulled forward position.  The pec minor as well as the lower trapezius are responsible for scap depression.  Often, the lower trap is inhibited, and has been lengthened through …

Are your scaps working?

When we do pulling movements we should be thinking about retraction and depression of the scapulae (shoulder blades).  Many athletes perform pulling movements incorrectly, compensating with humeral hyperextension.  In humeral hyperextension the humerus moves behind the torso with no action coming from the retraction of the shoulder blades.   As athletes pull only with the arms the scapula goes into anterior tilt, and loses all stability.  …

Bigger Calves = Bigger Performance???

  I get a lot of athletes who are after the quest of the holy calves.   A large group always in that hunt are baseball pitchers.  I’m not sure what it is but everywhere I’ve been, including the Angels, pitchers have always asked about how to make their calves bigger.  Part of the problem recently was the lower body of Cubs pitcher …

Empty Can vs. Full Can

A recent workout brought up a few questions on the validity of the shoulder exercise, the empty can.  The empty can has long been a staple in physical therapy circles when it comes to shoulder rehabilitation.  Dr Frank Jobe, a well known shoulder specialist, was the first the come up with this exercise.  Since then it has become widely known as an isolation execise for the supraspinatus, …

Protraction and the bench press

Question: Isn’t the bench press training the scapula just the same as the pushup?  Wouldn’t this hit my serratus every time I bench press?  First off the bench press and most forms of db bench presses do not allow for movement whatsoever of the scapulae.  The scaps are pinned beneath the athlete’s body to the bench.  Typically no movement occurs.   Efficient bench press technique actually calls …

The Other Shrug

I’m sure a lot of coaches and athletes out there have seen the overhead shrug done before but may wonder why it’s good for shoulder health.  Lets start out by examining the anatomy of the scap a little bit.  There are three muscles responsible for upward rotation of the scapula.  Again, upward rotation of the scapula is extremely important for …

What you don’t know about the pushup!!!

The pushup is quite easily one of the best exercises athletes can do.  Most will only associate pushups for the chest, and triceps.  But it’s a great exercise for the total body and even more so the upper back. Reaping the benefits of the pushup means focusing on correct technique first and foremost.   Quite possibly the best part of a correct pushup for …