ForceDecks Test: Athletic Shoulder (ASH) Test Protocol

The Athletic Shoulder (ASH) Test  (Ashworth, Hogben, Singh, Tulloch, Cohen, 2018) is a novel test used to monitor upper body performance, neuromuscular fatigue and readiness, and more specifically an athlete’s ability to transfer force across the shoulder girdle.  The ASH Test was developed by Ben Ashworth (you can follow Ben on Twitter and Instagram).  

The ASH Test evaluates shoulder strength in three different positions (" I", "Y" and "T"), each from the prone lying position:


(arm extended above head)
(arm extended at a 45° angle)
(arm extended to the side)

Test description and protocols

Starting Position
  • Prone lying
  • Forehead on 4cm foam block
  • Active arm extended (elbow straight) with hand resting on centre of ForceDeck
  • Inactive arm held by side (I position) or behind back (Y & T positions)
  • Feet hip width apart
  1. Zero plates
  2. Ask athlete to assume starting position
  3. Enter "3" in Measure Weight (kg)
  4. Click Start Recording
  5. Ensure Athlete is completely stable before and between each rep
  6. Perform 3 maximal isometric contractions tests in "I" position, keeping the feet hip width apart, pelvis level and elbow as straight as possible at all times and pausing for 20 seconds between each rep. 
  7. Repeat in "Y" position
  8. Repeat in "T" position
  9. Click Finish Recording
  10. Review that reps and test type have been detected correctly as "Isometric Test"
  11. Click Analyse and Save (to move directly to next athlete) or click Analyse (to review results)
Reps 1 - 20 reps (3 per position is typical)
Default Instant Results Performance Results
  • Net Peak Force [N]
  • Force @ 100ms [N]
  • Force @ 150ms [N]
  • Force @ 200ms [N]