The push up is a very simple exercise, however, when done correctly it allows your scapular to move fluently and initiating serratus anterior to work well. One can make this more functional by elevating the shoulders in the scapular plane of movement, by horizontally abducting your shoulders 30 degrees. Performing scapula exercises in a closed chain environment allows for better feedback. Frequently we find the impairment to be due to the fact that the serratus has poor control, not that the serrratus has poor strength. 6 Best Serratus Anterior Exercises for Men. Not only does this muscle have a cool name, but it is also needed for a plethora of arm movements; weather open chain (punching/grabbing something out of the cabinet) or closed chain (pushups, planks, downw… Serratus Anterior, which is also known as the “Big Swing Muscle” or “Boxer’s muscle” due to its effectiveness of protracting the scapula. Get into the plank position, with your feet on the floor, and your hands positioned on an immobile platform, like a chair step. Martin, R. M., & Fish, D. E. (2007). With 180 degrees of total shoulder flexion,  there will ideally be about 60 degrees of scapular upward rotation. Your body weight onto your shoulders creates a resistance cue for your scapula protractors to work, largely being the serratus anterior! The Shoulder [P]Rehab Program is a physical therapist developed, step-by-step program that teaches you how to optimize your shoulder health. This exercise works your shoulder muscles, arms, chest and abdomen in addition to strengthening your serratus anterior muscle. Make sure to keep the elbow medial to your wrist during this exercise, this will ensure external rotation at the shoulder. This is very subtle but can make all the difference in recruiting more Serratus Anterior and less Pec. September 2012: 2408-2416. The serratus anterior also anchors the shoulder blade to the thorax, with the help of the arm. As a result, you may be limiting yourself to reach your true performance potential as a fitness athlete. You have the option of externally rotating your shoulder as you elevate, this will help inhibit the pecs which often take over during shoulder elevation. Weak-ness may be detected by doing a serra-tus muscle test. Listen to our [P]Rehab Audio Experience with Dr. Mahkni as he discusses the topic of shoulder instability! And when it comes to serratus anterior there is not many better exercises than the push up. While bending your knees just slightly, lower your body to a quarter squat position. With this modified push up plus, you dictate how much load to place on your shoulders. The serratus anterior is sometimes called the “boxing muscle” because you need this protraction to throw a punch. 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