How to Fix Rounded Shoulders with a Resistance Band - Our #1 Exercise

Video: How to Fix Rounded Shoulders with a Resistance Band


Massage Tutorial: Serratus Anterior Stabilization for Shoulder Pain Client Homework

One of our favorite exercises to help you to fix rounded shoulders with resistance bands. This exercise will also help rotator cuff related pain, as well as neck pain. Rounded shoulders are one of the most common issues we see with clients and can come from a combination of desk work, device usage, and older injuries.

Video Source: Bodyworks DW Youtube Channel

Author & Host: David Weintraub LMT

Additional Demonstrator: Karl Urban LMT

Transcript Including Detailed Instructions to Fix Rounded Shoulders

DW: I’m going to show you one of my favorite new homework exercises I give to clients all the time. This is a stabilization exercise for your serratus anterior muscle which is this big fan shaped set of muscles that attach to your ribs, sweeps around, comes under your shoulder blade, and attaches to the inside edge of your shoulder blade from behind.

If you can imagine that muscle contracting, what it’s going to do is that [shown in video]…right.

So, how many of you feel like I can’t get my shoulder blades to go back?!

Part of the reason for this is counterintuitive. You’d think that strengthening your serratus would just make [your shoulder] come more and more forward. But what’s actually happening with stuck shoulders is that your serratus is weak slightly and your body will just glue it in place and not allow it to let go.

Because it won’t do its job of stabilizing between the traps, the traps are the big muscle in the back.

So by doing some stabilization & strengthening to this muscle, it will get strong enough that it can release backwards!

This was a big epiphany for me in the last year, especially with the work I do.

There’s a lot of different exercises you can show…this is my new favorite.

So, you’re going to take a long roughly six foot Theraband, and you can get these in sets of three on Amazon for like eight bucks.

You’re going to hold the two ends lower it to the floor, and stand right on it.

Okay so now I’m standing with my feet in neutral, which means not way out here [shown in video], but right underneath your knees, and right underneath your hips with feet pointed straight forward. I’m going to hold the two ends and I’m going to think about stacking my body in space so my pelvis is on top of my feet and my ribs are on top of my pelvis.

My head’s pointed forward, my shoulders are easy, and I’m going to stabilize everything except my shoulder joint which is the humerus in the shoulder socket. The shoulder girdle (which is your shoulder blade and collarbone) position is going to be held, and I’m going to go in opposite directions with extended arms.

Which is a lot harder than it looks!

Most people if they try this will do some version of doing this with their hips or their back, but we actually want all that to be stable and unmoving. The only thing mobilized right now should be my shoulder joint which is my arm bone in my shoulder socket.

Ideally you could do this to the mirror and just check to see is my sternum moving at all?

If it is then I’m actually using my back muscles to make this motion happen and not my shoulder muscles. And so by doing this, and you can do a set of 10 and then take a break, and do another set on a daily basis…

You’re going to strengthen your shoulders to actually be relaxed here alright!

So Karl is going to demonstrate this same exercise and I’m going to just help him kind of find the right way to stabilize.

But you can see his feet are pointed straight forwards they’re under his knees and under his hips, so he’s not doing a wide gym squat.

I’m going to throw him the Theraband and I’m going to have him grab the ends like I did, stand on the middle, and try to find that…

So your feet are a little wide actually…

There we go!

Okay and now I’m going to have you gently try to do the exercise and let’s see if you can stabilize in the right place and mobilize in the right place.

That’s not bad!

Nice that looks really good good job 🙂

Steps to Fix Rounded Shoulders

Step 1: Start with Feet in Neutral

You’re going to start with your feet in neutral which is not out here not here but actually pointed straight forward ankles underneath under hips

Step 2: Hold the ends of the band and stand on the middle

Step 3: Stabilize everything but your arms and extend these in opposite directions

Step 4: Do a Set of 10 on Each Side

Further Reading

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