Thumbs Up Position Shoulder Exercises

By Drew Heideman ATC, PT

Rotator cuff correct form JOI

Image of Proper Thumbs Up with Shoulder Exercises

Shoulder Exercise Tips: Put Your Thumbs Up

There is one small tweak to your shoulder exercise program that you can make in order to maximize the benefit and reduce the risk of injury. To do this you simply need to perform all of the shoulder flexion, abduction, and elevation exercises in the thumbs-up position. Performing exercises in this position frees up extra space in the shoulder joint by clearing the greater tuberosity of the humerus out of the way of the acromion process of the shoulder blade. Performing exercises in this position prevents what is known as shoulder impingement and can dramatically improve range of motion as well as decrease pain with movement. This modification should be made with all shoulder strengthening and range of motion exercises. This includes using shoulder pulleys, cane or T-bar exercises, as well as strengthening work. If you have further questions about this exercise modification or the appropriateness of exercise for the shoulder please contact your JOI Rehabilitation therapist.


Shoulder Joint Anatomy

Image of the Shoulder Anatomy

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