Swiss Ball Shoulder Exercises

Swiss Ball Shoulder Exercises
Shoulder strength is a large part of being a healthy, happy outdoorsperson. Among their many benefits, strong, healthy shoulders help ease the stress of lugging a pack and can make scaling a rock face a much less daunting proposition. By utilizing a Swiss stability ball when performing shoulder exercises, you engage stability muscles and integrate your core into a workout.

Shoulder Extension

Sit on the stability ball with your feet shoulder-width apart and your hands down at your sides. Keeping your back straight, lift your right arm out in front of you, continuing to lift until it's extended straight up, while keeping your shoulder in line with the opposite one, not lifting toward your ear. Slowly lower the arm and repeat with your left arm.

As you progress, add resistance by gripping a weight in each hand, making sure you maintain proper form.

Shoulder Abduction

Sit on the stability ball with your feet shoulder-width apart and your hands down at your sides. Keeping your back straight without bending to the side, lift your right arm straight out to your side until it's at a right angle to your body. Hold it for a few seconds, then slowly lower it. Repeat with your left arm.
As you progress, add resistance by gripping a weight in each hand, making sure you maintain proper form.

Lying External Rotation

Lie with the ball under one side of your body, with your lower arm resting on the ball for stability. Flex the upper arm 90 degrees at the elbow with your fist pointing in front of you. Holding that angle, rotate the upper arm until your fist points out to your side, then hold for a few seconds. Slowly rotate back and repeat with the other arm.

As you progress, add resistance by gripping a weight in each hand, making sure you retain proper form.

Swiss Ball Pushup

Lie on your stomach on the Swiss ball, with your pelvis on the top of the ball and your hands on the floor, shoulder-width apart, your legs straight behind you, and your feet pointed up at the ceiling. Push yourself up, straightening your arms until your elbows are just short of locking. Hold for a few seconds, then lower yourself back to the starting point.

Swiss Ball Overhead Press

Sit on a Swiss ball, holding dumbbells in an overhand (palms forward) grip just over your shoulders, in line with your jaw. Slowly raise the dumbbells straight overhead until your elbows are just short of locking. Hold for a few seconds then slowly lower back to the starting position.

Article Written By Billy Brown

Billy Brown is an outdoor sports writer living in Northern California. An avid rock climber and trail runner, he's been writing about outdoor activities, fitness and gear since 2005. He regularly contributes to "The Record Searchlight," uncooped.com, and Trails.com, as well as other print and online publications. Brown holds a Bachelor of Arts in psychology from Simpson University and is a NASM-certified personal trainer.

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