Chest-Supported Y w/ External Rotator Emphasis
As a former competitive swimmer, I’m no stranger to shoulder pain. It’s been a problem I’ve had to deal with for a long, long time dating back to my junior year in high school and my first experience with physical therapy. It’s common knowledge in the strength/therapy world that there are three areas that deserve extra emphasis when preventing shoulder injury.
- Scapular Stabilizer Function
- External Rotator Function
- Thoracic Mobility
While the Chest-Supported Y has always been a staple exercise for training stability of the scapular (shoulder blade), there is a very simple tweak to help tie in those external rotators.
What this adjustment does is provide a moment arm that provides an INTERNAL ROTATION torque to the glenohumeral joint. In response, your EXTERNAL ROTATORS must work extra hard! In addition, apply TEMPO to these movements, emphasizing a pause at the top and a slow, controlled descent.
With this simple tweak, your classic lower trap exercise becomes a potent way to also integrate external rotator function as well. It’s tweaks like these that can create highly efficient & effective (p)rehab programs!
For best results, I like to precede this movement exercises that emphasize controlled rotation through the shoulder and thoracic spines, such as Thoracic Bridges, Prone to Supine Primal Rolls, and Kettlebell Armbar Variations!
Charles Badawy SPT, CSCS, USAW
University of Pittsburgh – Class of 2019
BONUS: This tweak can very easily be applied to other scapular stability exercises such as Prone T’s, W’s, & V’s! Give them a shot!