The teres minor is one of the four rotator cuff muscles around the shoulder joint. The muscle has three primary movements for the shoulder: external rotation, transverse abduction, and transverse extension. Strengthening the teres minor can help in injury prevention and shoulder stability. Start with one set and gradually build to three sets of each exercise.
Dumbbell Lying Rear Delt Raise
The movement of this exercise is transverse abduction. Your upper arm moves outward and away from your chest in a horizontal plane, with your elbow facing down. Lie down on your right side on the floor, right arm bent and supporting your head. Separate your legs slightly for more stability when performing the exercise. Grasp the dumbbell with your left hand, palm facing down, left arm extended in front of you, perpendicular to your torso. Raise the dumbbell off the floor until it is above your shoulder. Make sure to keep your elbow straight but relaxed. Slowly return the dumbbell to starting position. Repeat the movement eight to 12 times and then switch sides.
Upright Shoulder External Rotation With Dumbbells
The movement of this exercise is external rotation. Your upper arm rotates around the longitudinal axis of the bone, turning your upper arm outward, and away from the center of your torso. Stand up and hold a dumbbell in your right hand. Extend your arm out to the right side at shoulder height. Bend your elbow to a 90-degree angle with your palm facing forward while still holding onto the dumbbell. Rotate at your shoulder joint and lower the dumbbell forward, then slowly return back to upright position with dumbbell next your head. Repeat the movement eight to 12 times and then switch sides.
Dumbbell Bent-Over Row
The movement of this exercise is transverse extension. Your upper arm moves away from your chest with your elbows out to the sides and pointed to the rear. Place your right knee on top of a bench or chair and place your right hand on the bench for support. Your left foot should be on the floor. Hold a dumbbell in your left hand, with your left arm extended toward the floor. Squeeze your shoulder blades together and pull the dumbbell up towards your rib cage without rotating your torso, which stays horizontal to the floor. Slowly return the dumbbell until your arm is extended down again and release your shoulder blades. Repeat the exercise eight to 12 times, then switch sides.
Seated Row With Resistance Band
The movement of this exercise is also transverse extension. Place a resistance band around a sturdy anchor, like a pole. Position yourself in a chair a few feet away from the anchor with the band at the height of your shoulders. Grab an end of the band with each hand, palms down. You may need to vary the resistance of the band by adjusting your hand position. Grasp the band closer to the center for more resistance, or clasp closer to the ends for less resistance. Sit up tall in the chair with your feet flat on the floor. Squeeze your shoulder blades together and then pull the band towards your chest, bending your elbows. Slowly return to starting position and release your shoulder blades. Repeat this exercise eight to 12 times. (see reference 3)
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