Revision of the Shoulder Normalization tests is required to include rhomboid major and teres major

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Abstract

The four “Shoulder Normalization Tests” were found previously to be a parsimonious set of isometric tests that produce maximal voluntary isometric contractions (MVIC) in the supraspinatus, infraspinatus, subscapularis, trapezius, serratus anterior, deltoid, latissimus dorsi, and pectoralis major [Boettcher et al. (2008). J Orthop Res 26:1591–1597]. However, these tests have not been validated for rhomboid major and teres major. In the current study, these Shoulder Normalization Tests were evaluated and compared to three other tests that could possibly elicit maximum activity in rhomboid major and teres major: abduction/extension in 90° abduction; adduction at 90° abduction; and extension in 30° abduction. No statistical difference was found in the mean activation of rhomboid major and teres major in these additional MVIC tests compared to the Shoulder Normalization Tests. However, the extension MVIC test produced maxima for at least 50% of subjects in rhomboid major, teres major, and latissimus dorsi. We concluded that the original Shoulder Normalization Tests should be expanded to include the extension MVIC test. The EMG normalization reference value for any of the above muscles would be the maximum EMG level generated across these Revised Shoulder Normalization Tests. © 2011 Orthopaedic Research Society Published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J Orthop Res 29:1846–1849, 2011

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