What Are Some Shoulder Strengthening Exercises?


Quick Answer

Some shoulder strengthening exercises are "empty the can," "draw the sword" and "medicine ball alphabet." Other shoulder strengthening exercises include one-armed dumbbell rows and face-pulls.

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Full Answer

One shoulder strengthening exercise is called "empty the can" and requires one dumbbell weighing 2 to 5 pounds. To do this exercise, begin by standing with feet hip-distance apart, keeping the knees relaxed, and holding the dumbbell in one hand with the thumb-side next to the thigh. Raise the arm holding the dumbbell out from the side at a 45 degree angle, keeping the wrist straight and the thumb pointing downward, as if the weight is a can out of which you are pouring liquid. Lift the arm up to shoulder-height, hold it there for a couple of seconds, then lower the arm, and repeat the process on the other side.

Another shoulder strengthening exercise is known as "medicine ball alphabet," which calls for the use of a medicine ball, filled water jug, sand bag or other type of weight not to exceed 4 pounds. Start in a relaxed stance, holding the medicine ball or whatever type of weight used straight out in front of the body with the elbows slightly bent. Trace each letter of the alphabet in the air with the medicine ball by rotating the arms, starting from the shoulders. Use big, full motions to create large letters in the air, but never range higher than the head or lower than the waist.

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