The rotator cuff is the group of muscles and tendons in the shoulder that also stabilize the shoulder. These muscles and tendons connect your upper arm bone with your shoulder blade. Injury to the rotator cuff includes any type of irritation or damage to the muscles and tendons. Common causes for rotator injury may include falling, lifting, and repetitive arm activities - such as a job/hobby that requires overhead lifting, throwing a baseball, or placing items on overhead shelves.
If you've had a rotator cuff injury in the past, daily shoulder stretches and a shoulder-strengthening program can help prevent a recurrence. Most people exercise the front muscles of the chest, shoulder and upper arm, but neglect the back of the shoulder or around the shoulder blade.
The two following exercises are beneficial for strengthening the rotator cuff.