Cuban Rotations

Cuban Rotations are used as a supplementary exercise for your shoulders. Their purpose is to make the internal structure of your shoulders stronger and healthier. They will produce more stability, reduce muscle imbalance and there for reduce the chance of injuries.

When it comes to overall performance, we are looking to perform as best as we can so to make sure we do, we need the proper stabilization for it.

Our external rotators play a major role in our performance and when it comes to our shoulders this exercise will strengthen them and give the needed strong and stable joint.

Cuban rotation primarily stresses the Insfraspinatus, a rotator cuff muscle responsible for external/lateral rotation of the humerus. It's very easy to develop a muscular imbalance since most program heavily favor internal rotation and not external rotation.


They are playing a role of "brakes" when it comes to throwing, punching or any other shoulder movement that causes the internal rotation. So, with this exercise we are strengthening our external rotators, so they can be strong and keep you injury free.


Barbell, dumbbells, or free weight plates.


1) Grab a barbell with a pronated grip (palms facing down).

The barbell should be 1-2 cm above your head and the angle at the elbow should be at 90 degrees.

2) Start by lowering towards your chest and keep the chest up and your head in the neutral position. The rotation should come only from the shoulders.

3) Eccentric (negative) - rotate the bar down as far as you can without lowering your chest or your upper arms.


Cuban rotations can be performed unilaterally with one arm using dumbbells or free weights.

Start with lighter weights and increase the load as you see fit.


2 times a week, 2-3 sets of 8-15 repetitions.

You can start with higher repetition number and reduce to 8-10 repetitions.

Tempo - 3-4 second concentric and eccentric. Rotators are better targeted at a slower tempo and it is safer to perform at a slower tempo.

Rest 1-2 minutes between sets.