4 “Must Do” Rotator Cuff Exercises With Exercise Bands

Hey workout partners, Today I want to show you the four “Must Do” Rotator Cuff Exercises for shoulder health.

What is your rotator cuff?

What are the rotator cuff muscles? The Rotator Cuff is made up of four muscles in and around the shoulder. They are responsible for Rotating the Humerus (Your upper Large Arm Bone), and keeping that bone tight in the shoulder socket.
If you have clicking, or pain in your shoulder, it may be due to weak rotator cuff muscles. I'm going to show you how to strengthen those right now with the exercises listed on this page.

Before we get to the good stuff, I know that many of you prefer video to the written descriptions. If you are in that group, CLICK HERE to see the video.

For all of these exercises you’ll be working in the Horizontal and Vertical Planes.

Horizontal Plane

Let’s tackle the horizontal (side to side) plane first, with internal and external rotation. These two “must do” exercises will strengthen the Rotator Cuff muscles that rotate your arms from side to side.

***Important Note: You are not going to train your rotator cuff muscles the same way that you would for large muscle groups. The Shoulder joint and the surrounding muscles are smaller, more fragile muscles. The purpose of training these muscles is to keep them strong, not to make them bigger, so higher reps and lower resistance should be used.


1. The Internal (side) Rotation takes the arm from out to the side and rotates it in towards the midline of the body. The set up and instructions for movement are here: Exercise Bands Internal Side Rotation.


2. The External (side) Rotation rotates your arm out to the side away from the body. See the details here: Exercise Bands External Side Rotation.

Vertical Plane

Next let’s look at the “must do” exercises in the vertical plane (up and down). These exercises actually have the same names as the ones above. For both exercises your arms will be in a “goal post” position. To create a goal post position your upper arms at parallel with the floor, and your forearms at perpendicular with the floor.


3. External Rotation UP Rotates your upper arms back, which raises your arms up, away from the midline of the body. The details are here: Exercise Bands External Up Rotation.


4. Internal rotation rotates the upper arm bone forward, lowering your arms down towards the midline of the body. Learn all of the details here: Exercise bands Internal (Down) Rotation.
You have a question, right? How many reps and sets should you do for each? You can go through one high reps set (I do 28) of each, or you can go through two and even three sets depending on your needs.

If you find that you are getting Lazy and not doing the exercises, make it a habit to throw them in before every upper body workout. One set of each will literally take you only 2 minutes. Get it done, workout partners!

Have a great workout!

All the best,

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