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Serratus Anterior: Strengthen and Stretch the Stabilizer of the Scapula

Serratus Anterior: Strengthen and Stretch the Stabilizer of the Scapula:

  • The serratus anterior is responsible for gluing the scapula to the rib cage, stabilizing the scapula, achieving more effective motor gestures.
  • The serratus originates in the deep face of the scapula; its fibers directed forward around the first nine ribs as muscle bundles in the shape of saw teeth, hence its name. It also helps in inspiration by fixing the scapula together with the rhomboid muscle, favoring the opening of the rib cage.
  • The abducted or winged scapula indicates a weakness of this muscle that cannot attach the rib cage to the scapulae.

Also read: Exercise For The Improvement of Bone Health


  • Its crucial function stabilizes the scapula, providing a “fulcrum” to transmit forces between the arms and the trunk.
  • It intervenes in gestures of climbing or pushing the arm and isolating the trunk from vibrations.


  • Some levels of force are necessary for throwing actions, such as in handball, basketball, or volleyball, and it also has an essential function of isolating the trunk from vibrations as can occur in mountain bike cyclists, where the arms are continuously subjected to beatings and tensions.
  • Without proper stabilization of the serratus, all loads are transmitted to the scapulohumeral joint.


Exercise 1

On a pulley or with a tensioner: perform thrusts with the arm, moving only the shoulder joint and the scapula, bringing the hands closer to the knees.

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Exercise 2

In the prone position:  with the forearms supported, raise the dorsal area as much as possible, sliding the rib cage along with the shoulder blades as they separate.

Exercise 3

Pull-over: This classic pulley exercise will involve the serratus, forcing the scapula to stick to the rib cage.

Exercise 4

Press exercises: it is essential in any compulsory training (with dumbbells or barbells) to reach the last phase of raising the shoulders; try to “grow” upwards with the arms extended. This is the specific action of the serratus.


Exercise 1

“Hang” rib cage: to stretch its fibers, we need to “hang” the rib cage from the scapulae. For support, relax your core muscles and drop the weight. By lowering the rib cage below the shoulder joint, we will be able to stretch the serratus.

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