Ever been told that you have a winged scapula? This is condition whereby the shoulder blade (scapula) protrudes outwards due to a dysfunction of the Serratus Anterior (SA) Muscle Group.
The SA is a crucial muscle that acts on the shoulder blade, allowing it to protract/externally rotate, rotate upwards and tilt backwards; physiological movements that are required in overhead activities of the upper extremities as well as forward punching movement patterns.
When the Serratus Anterior does not adequately activate, compensatory movements result which can lead to abnormal stresses placed on the rotator cuff. If left untreated this can contribute to subacromial impingement and shoulder instability, leading to decreased shoulder range of motion, strength, and pain.
Try out this simple yet effective exercise to activate that SA!
1️⃣With a resistance band placed around your wrists, position your forearms against a foam roller on a wall, at approx. shoulder height. Hands should be located closer together than the shoulders to begin.
2️⃣Lean your body weight into the foam roller as you slightly arch your upper back away from the wall.
3️⃣Simultaneously separate your hands against the resistance of the band so that they get closer to shoulder width apart.
4️⃣While maintaining steps 2 and 3, roll your wrists and the foam roller up the wall in a controlled manner.
5️⃣Return back down to starting position.
6️⃣Repeat 3 sets of 10.