IMR Press / JOMH / Volume 17 / Issue 2 / DOI: 10.31083/jomh.2021.021
Open Access Original Research
Improved shoulder stability through plyometric, proprioceptive and strength exercises in rugby players. A randomized clinical trial
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1 Master’s degree in Sports Physiotherapy, Real Madrid, Department of Physiotherapy, Faculty of Sport Sciences, European University of Madrid, Spain
2 Department of Physiotherapy, Faculty of Sport Sciences, European University of Madrid, Spain
3 Royal Victoria Eugenia Foundation, Instituto de Salud Carlos III, Madrid, Spain
4 Fishemo CEE, Spanish Federation of Hemophilia, Madrid, Spain
*Correspondence: (Rubén Cuesta-Barriuso)
J. Mens. Health 2021, 17(2), 127–134;
Submitted: 1 October 2020 | Accepted: 8 January 2021 | Published: 8 April 2021
Copyright: © 2021 The Author(s). Published by IMR Press.
This is an open access article under the CC BY 4.0 license (

Background: The shoulder is one of the most frequently injured joints in rugby. Improving muscle strength can increase glenohumeral joint stability, thus preventing injuries to this joint.

Purpose: Evaluating the effectiveness of a plyometric, proprioceptive and strength exercise program in promoting shoulder stability in rugby players.

Study design: Randomized single blind clinical trial, with follow up. Level of evidence, 2.

Methods: Thirty federated rugby players were included in the study and randomized to the two study groups. The experimental group performed an exercise program including plyometric exercises using a fitness ball, proprioceptive exercises with BodyBlade® and strength training with elastic bands. The intervention lasted four weeks, with two weekly sessions lasting 15 minutes each. The control group continued with their usual routine. The study variable was glenohumeral stability, measured with the Closed Kinetic Chain Upper Extremity Stability test and the Y-Balance test. Three evaluations (pre-treatment, post-treatment and follow-up) were carried out. Changes were calculated after each evaluation and repeated measures analysis was performed.

Results: Stability improved after the intervention and when comparing pre-treatment and follow-up assessments (P < 0.05) in the experimental group. There were differences between the two groups (P < 0.05) and between the different study evaluations (P < 0.001).

Conclusion: A protocol based on plyometric, proprioceptive and strength exercises improves glenohumeral stability. This improvement can be maintained for four weeks.

Plyometric exercise
Fig. 1.
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