2

I’m primarily interested in rectifying my posture so that my shoulders don’t curl inward toward each other, my sternum and my centre chest.

It’s been suggested that I must strengthen my rotator cuffs to achieve this. Is that right?

Regardless, what can I do to achieve it?

1
  • 1
    Having experienced a rotator cuff repair, I'd suggest you work with a Physical Therapist. Don't assume it's a cuff issue unless you've been diagnosed properly.
    – rrirower
    Jan 19, 2023 at 19:18

1 Answer 1

2

It’s been suggested that I must strengthen my rotator cuffs to achieve this. Is that right?

No. It's a super common misconception that "rounded" shoulders are caused by weak rotator cuffs, but in reality, "rounded" means unwanted shoulder protraction, which the rotator cuffs do not influence at all.

Protraction is caused primarily by the serratus anterior and pectoralis minor, and the opposite movement, retraction, is caused by the trapezius and rhomboids. Whereas the rotator cuffs are only responsible for rotating the arms.

Even then though, strengthening or stretching are unlikely to do anything to change your posture, assuming that you can currently volitionally move your shoulders into the position that you perceive to be "good" posture.

Regardless, what can I do to achieve it?

Consciously maintain the position that you'd like others to perceive as being your normal posture. Accept that it will never become automatic.

6
  • But just what is “protraction“? Jan 20, 2023 at 15:16
  • And how can it never become natural? Why do you think it could be that most (nearly all) of the people I know with the best shoulder posture seem to be professional PTs at my gym? Jan 20, 2023 at 15:45
  • Protraction is pushing your shoulders forward, so they curl in towards your sternum. Retraction is pulling them back, like you're squeezing your shoulder blades together. Jan 20, 2023 at 23:55
  • Your PTs probably have good posture because they're consciously holding their body in that position in order to give an impression of strength and authority. They'd get fewer clients if they allowed themselves to slouch. Posture generally doesn't become natural because you can't change the structure of your bones, and with very few exceptions, strengthening muscles doesn't affect the resting length of those muscles, it just makes them able to exert more force when you voluntarily contract them. Jan 20, 2023 at 23:58
  • lol. (Not because I’m incredulous, but because of how blunt and matter of fact the comment is. I need to ponder) Jan 21, 2023 at 10:05

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.