Suspended Shoulder External Rotation


Utility: Auxiliary
Mechanics: Isolated
Force: Pull



Grasp suspension handles and position bent elbows to each sides of waist.

Step back until suspension straps are taut. While keeping bent elbows to side, step forward slightly so body reclines back behind suspension handles.


Pull handles apart from each side, while keeping fixed elbow position and body and legs straight throughout movement. Raise forward so handles are to each side of body. Return back until handles come back together in front of body. Repeat.


A very upright position (ie: very light resistance) with one foot positioned back slightly (see 'Easier') is typically required for proper execution. Take care to maintain tension on suspension trainer near top of movement. Dismounting can be achieved by walking backward until body is upright or stepping out at top of movement. This exercise can be performed on TRXⓇ style suspension trainer or adjustable length gymnastics rings.

This movement may involve more shoulder girdle retraction compared to traditional rotator cuff exercises such as Cable Shoulder External Rotation, where movement is purely shoulder external rotation. However, this movement can be performed more 'strict' if desired to minimize shoulder girdle movement. Similarly, traditional shoulder external rotator work calls for strict 90º elbow positioning. In this exercise utilizing bodyweight, elbow angle could be decreased in order to offer appropriate (lighter) starting resistance. In any case, attempt to keep elbow angle fixed throughout movement.


Resistance is least when body is positioned upright, at top of exercise. Movement can be made easier with staggered foot position by placing one foot slightly back, most commonly performed on this exercise. Elbows can be bent more sharply, thereby decreasing lever arm length.


Elbows can be bent closer to 90° (as opposed to being bent more sharply), thereby increasing lever arm length (horizontal distance from handle to upper arm attached to rotating shoulder). This movement can also be made more challenging by placing feet more forward, thereby angling body back at initiation of movement. See Gravity Vectors for greater understanding of how body angle influences resistance.





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