Shoulder Stretches

by PhysioAdvisor Staff

Exercises > Flexibility (Joints) > Shoulder Stretches

The following shoulder stretches are designed to restore flexibility to the joints and muscles of the shoulder. If you are injured, you should discuss the suitability of these shoulder stretches with your physiotherapist prior to beginning them. Generally, they should be performed 3 times daily provided they do not cause or increase pain.


Shoulder Stretches – Basic Exercises

Shoulder Blade Squeezes

Begin sitting or standing tall with your back straight. Squeeze your shoulder blades together until you feel a mild to moderate stretch (figure 1). Hold for 5 seconds and repeat 10 times provided the exercise is pain free.

Shoulder Stretches - Shoulder Blade Squeezes

Figure 1 – Shoulder Blade Squeezes

Pendular Exercises

Begin leaning forwards with your forearm supported on a table or bench. Keeping your back straight and your shoulder relaxed, gently swing your arm forwards and backwards until you feel a mild to moderate stretch (figure 2) . Repeat 10 times provided the exercise is pain free. Repeat the exercise swinging your arm side to side until you feel a mild to moderate stretch pain free.

Shoulder Stretches - Pendular Exercises

Figure 2 – Pendular Exercises (right side)

Pendular Circles

Begin leaning forwards with your forearm supported on a table or bench. Keeping your back straight and your shoulder relaxed, gently swing your arm in circles clockwise until you feel a mild to moderate stretch (figure 3). Repeat the exercise swinging your arm counter clockwise. Repeat 10 times in each direction provided the exercise is pain free.

Shoulder Stretches - Pendular Circles

Figure 3 – Pendular Circles (right side)


Shoulder Stretches – Advanced Exercises


Shoulder Stretches – Less Common Exercises


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