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Boosting Shoulder Flexibility

Updated: Mar 26, 2022

Physical therapy, with a focus on shoulder flexibility, is the primary treatment recommendation for shoulder injuries and conditions such as Adhesive Capsulitis , also known as, frozen shoulder.

Specific exercises will help restore motion. These may be done under the supervision of a physical therapist or via a home program. Therapy includes stretching or range of motion exercises for the shoulder. Sometimes heat is used to help loosen the shoulder up before stretching.

Below are examples of some of the stretches that can help boost shoulder flexibility to avoid injuries

1. Low back handclasp

  • Bring hands behind your back, with thumbs toward the ground, and clasp them together, touching palm-to-palm.

  • Your hands should be even with your low back.

  • Slightly arch the upper back, opening the chest and allowing the shoulder blades to gently come together.

  • Hold for 10 seconds, then reverse the clasp (if your left thumb was on the outside of your clasp, change so that your right thumb is on the outside).

2. Crossover arm stretch

  • Cross your straight right arm across your chest.

  • Use your left hand to gently pull the right upper arm closer to your body.

  • Hold for 5 to 10 seconds, and relax. Repeat on the other side.

3. Cow face pose
  • Sit on the yoga mat with your back straight and legs extended in front of you.

  • Put your feet together and place your palms next to your hips.

  • Bend your right leg and place the right feet under your left buttock.

  • Stack your left knee over your right knee.

  • Raise the left arm above your head, and bend the elbow. Simultaneously, bring the right arm behind your back and interlock both hands.

  • Take deep breaths and stay as long as you are comfortable.

  • Now, as you exhale, release your arms.

  • Uncross your legs and repeat for the other leg.

There are other ways that can be recommended by your physical therapist for your pain and stiffness in your shoulder. Please consult or seek advice from him/her before attempting any of the above to see which works best for you.

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