Best Shoulder Stretches for Shoulder Injuries and Muscles

Page content

Shoulder Injury Stretches

If you’ve had issues with your rotator cuff or experience chronic shoulder stiffness, doing shoulder stretches can help relieve the pain and restore flexibility in your shoulder.

Standing Pendulum Stretch: Lean on a chair back with one arm and leave your other arm free. Swing your free arm back and forth to get the blood flowing and loosen your muscles. Begin by doing the exercise for 30 seconds and work up to a couple of minutes. Repeat with the other arm.

Prone Pendulum Stretch: Lay stomach-down on a bed, table, or couch that sits far enough off the floor to allow your hand to hang without touching the floor. Swing your free arm back and forth in a pendulum motion for 30 seconds to a couple minutes. Repeat with the other arm.

Shoulder Loosening Stretches

Many people experience pain in their shoulders after working in front of a computer all day long. Performing range of motion shoulder exercises can rectify this pain and unlock your neck and shoulder area.

Shoulder Shrug: You can perform this exercise one shoulder at a time or with both shoulders simultaneously. Raise your shoulders up to your ear as if you were amplifying a normal shrug. Shrug each shoulder, one at a time or in tandem, at least ten times each day.

Shoulder Rotation Stretch: Carry out this exercise much like the shrug listed above. However, instead of merely shrugging up and down, move your shoulders one at a time in a circular motion. Move it front to back for five repetitions, then circle it back to front for another five. Repeat with the other shoulder.

Triangle Shoulder Stretch: With one arm, reach back behind your head to the opposite shoulder. Your arm should make a triangle shape with your elbow at the top. Take your other hand and grab the elbow, pulling it gently towards the opposite shoulder. Hold this position for five seconds and repeat with the other arm. Do ten repetitions of this stretch on each shoulder.

Chicken Wing Stretch: Stretch both arms straight out in front of your body. Bend your elbows and slide them back so that your elbows are next to your upper rib cage. Your arms should be making a horizontal “L” shape on each side. Hold this pose for ten seconds, and perform ten repetitions total.

Behind-the-Back Stretch: Stand with your arms hanging naturally at your sides. Bring one arm behind your back and grab onto this hand with your other hand. Pull the hand to the opposite side and bend your head to the opposite side at the same time. Your hands and head should be pointing in the same direction. Hold this pose for five seconds, repeat with the other arm and perform ten repetitions total on each shoulder.