The Fitness Fixer
The Fitness Fixer

Fast Fitness - Mobilize and Strengthen With Serratus PushUps

Here is Friday Fast Fitness - Strengthen and learn to use the often forgotten serratus anterior muscles and learn a good mobilization for your shoulders so that you don't get stiff, and become stuck round-shouldered when driving or typing.

"Serratus" muscles wrap your chest below your armpits. Their sections fan out like your fingers, looking serrated, giving the name. They wrap around your sides to the front, so are further described with the word "anterior." Muscle names are often descriptive, and can be easy and fun to understand. They are important for keeping your shoulder blades in place - but only when you use them to.

My student Yash demonstrates:

1. Hold a push up position with straight not locked arms. This is often called a plank position. Keeping your arms straight at the elbow, let your upper body sink under your weight so that your shoulder blades roll back and squeeze together - photo 1.

    2. Correct that problem by pulling your upper back to a straighter position - photo 2

    3. Do as many repetitions of sinking and pulling upward to correct the winging that you can at once. Improve by increasing the number and speed you can correct.

Coming posts will describe the serratus more and what it does, more on winging scapula, more fixes for it, and more on understanding muscle names and uses. Understanding, rather than memorizing, will help you know if claims for exercise fads and machines will help or not, and to not feel like an outsider about your anatomy and health. No medical degrees needed to understand your own body.

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About the Author


Dr. Bookspan is an award-winning scientist whose goal is to make exercise easier and healthier.