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A Physical Therapist encourages people to do these exercises to help strengthen their shoulders and avoid injury

Dr. Aaron Horschig gives advice on how to get stronger and safer by squatting.



Dr. Aaron Horschig, a physical therapist, regularly posts videos on the Squat University channel to help people get the most out of their workouts without putting themselves in danger. The “Lock 3,” a term coined by Dr. Andrew Lock, consists of three exercises that Horschig recommends you do before each bench press workout in order to “prime” your shoulders. In a new video, Horschig discusses the “Lock 3” with record-breaking bench presser Julius Maddox.

As the first step, internal shoulder rotation is practiced. Lie on your side, face down, with your arms resting at your sides. You can do 20 repetitions of this simple exercise by keeping your elbows straight and palms facing up throughout the movement. With a pound of weights in each hand, Maddox demonstrates.

When someone is trying to recover from shoulder pain, “what he’s doing is focusing on the rhomboids on, the posterior muscles of the rotator cuff,” says Horschig.

The emphasis of the second maneuver is on turning to the outside. Flip your hands over so the palms are facing down while maintaining the horizontal position. Do another set of 20 repetitions of the same exercise. Horschig warns against “over-cueing” scapular retraction. It’s as simple as visualizing picking up the arms and putting them down again.

Finally, lay out with your arms in a T shape, and repeat the previous two steps with the same deliberate, controlled motion.

Horschig says the Lock 3 shoulder routine is useful for people who have trouble with the bench press because it “primes the posterior shoulder muscles before getting under the bar,” thus addressing the “why” behind most shoulder problems.

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