Updates and Rotator Cuffs

October 20, 2009

First all, yesterday’s lower body lift went great! A) I’m starting to see my strength move back up to where it was at the beginning of the summer and B) It was deadlift day so nuff said! Heavy rows today?!…Is it Christmas?!

Anyways, last Saturday was my last day at SST…three years after I first started interning there (wow thats a while ago). And in telling our clients that I was leaving, I was reminded how nice and supportive people are, so I am extremely appreciative of that and will miss training them a ton!

That said, I am now onto the next chapter of my life, and like any optimist, Man, I’m excited!! No doubt, I will share my exploits on here for your viewing/reading pleasure.

As for today’s training info to contemplate, I’ve been re-thinking progression on rotator cuff exercises and to a certain degree the low trap/scapular (shoulder blade) stabilizer muscle training too. Do we just need to worry about starting with bodyweight resistance?

What’s making me consider this? When the athletes I’ve been training are too concerned with going heavier with these movements, they invariably would not feel the exercise where I wanted them to. So instead of feeling a muscle tighten behind their armpit, they’d feel it somewhere in their shoulder (dependent on the exercise). In response I would often re-demo the exercise while giving them the technique cues over again or trying new ones. What happened was I would be the one feeling the exercise working during my demo (with no weights) while they may or may not have when they tried it again. Now, I’m also aware that weight used is not the only possible reason why they were not feeling the movement where I wanted them to. Further to this point, I actually think rotator cuff exercises are one of the more abstract exercises to teach in that it isn’t about your arm moving a weight from point A to point B. Its about shoulder rotation, and everything from the elbow down (forearm and weight)  merely gets to go along for the ride. Unfortunately the former becomes the default plan of execution because the weight is in the hand, and based on our earliest exposures to strength training, we are taught to “lift the weight”.

So as you can see, I’ve gone back to the drawing board and now its going to be back to my laboratory and gym (what I really mean is “gym” and “clients”…)

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2 Responses to “Updates and Rotator Cuffs”

  1. andy Says:

    Great Post man!

  2. Patrick Says:

    > I actually think rotator cuff exercises are one of the more abstract exercises to teach in that it isn’t about your arm moving a weight from point A to point B. Its about shoulder rotation, and everything from the elbow down (forearm and weight) merely gets to go along for the ride.

    One of your best points ever Chris!

    Most people lack the body awareness to feel their rotator cuff muscles working. These are small muscle on the back that people can’t see, can’t feel and don’t really do very much from a looking good point of view. Their health and balanced strength is critical but they are nearly as cool as abs, chest or biceps.

    Pat


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