The average gym goer may never be able to answer the question "what is the Serratus Anterior" much less which exercises are best for developing this muscle. If you're a more advanced bodybuilder or athlete, a Serratus Anterior Workout should be an important part of your routine.
What is the Serratus Anterior?
It is located along the inside underneath the arm pit. It attaches to the ribs posterior. This small muscle allows you to rotate your shoulder blade and asthetically it's referred to as the "wings" that help define a v shaped upper body / physique.
I believe that each and every exercise for this muscle can always be made more difficult by not only increasing the resistance levels but the environments the exercises are done on to incorporate the core stabilizing muscles. Let’s look at my top 4 exercises for developing and strengthening this muscle.
Serratus Anterior Workout
1. Overhead full arm flexion
This can be done many ways and is also referred to as pullovers. You can lie on the floor or stand against the wall. When laying on a bench you can increase the range of motion when the dumbbell goes beyond the bench level, but make sure your shoulder has that range of motion to complete the lift. Take a dumbbell and bring it from your side all the way over your head. When standing against a wall have your thumb face forward and then rotate it at the top so it faces in. When on the floor the same motion applies. When on a bench grab 1 dumbbell or barbell and bring from your waist all the way over your head, Again be careful at the top as the resistance level may force your shoulder to a range of motion that it cannot handle safely.
2. Standing singe arm cable or band press.
Stand with your feet slightly apart and use a moderate resistance level to press it forward towards the midline of the body. Alternate arms and when you’re comfortable add a greater level of resistance and instability such as standing on a Bosu or balancing on your knees.
3. Close grip bar pushups.
Find a squat rack, smith machine or a counter top and do close elbows pushups. I suggest doing them in a count of 5 for 15-25 reps. Vary these and add push a-ways from the bar or counter and try to draw the belly in and hold the glutes tight.
4. Scaption lying on your stomach.
Lie on a bench or floor and hold dumbbell even with your ear and lift slightly up. I suggest you depress the scapula first and retract as you let the weight down. This exercise is great when done on a physio-ball to establish a greater degree of instability.
The above exercises can be done with little or great levels of resistance and can easily be incorporated into a shoulder, back, or chest day. Please make sure to do the reps correctly and slowly and add difficulty after you have mastered the basics of the movements. Always consider adding to your exercise different environments, reps, cadence, and resistance levels.
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