10 minute shoulder stretching routine


Arm pain, Rotator cuff, Shoulder pain, Stretching (Active Isolated method) / Saturday, March 28th, 2009

1. Doorway stretch low position: Place your hands flat on both sides of a doorway with your elbows tucked in at waist level. Exhale and step through the doorway with one leg as you squeeze your “wings” together. Keep squeezing and stretching for two seconds, then rock back onto your other leg to release the tension. Repeat 10 times.

2. Posterior shoulder stretch: Depress your right shoulder and raise your straight arm across your body. Exhale as you press the right arm against your chest using your left arm. Keep stretching actively as you press for two seconds. Release your arm to your side. Repeat 10 times. Repeat on the left side.

3. Doorway stretch middle position: Repeat stretch #1 with your upper arms parallel to the floor.

4. Underarm stretch: Raise your bent right arm behind your head with your palm facing forward. Grasp your wrist, or your elbow if you can, with your left hand. Exhale as you actively stretch your arm across behind your head, assisting the stretch by pulling on your wrist or elbow. Stretch so you feel the muscle at the back of your underarm. Keep stretching actively as you assist for two seconds. Release the right elbow to your waist. Repeat 10 times. Repeat on the left side.

To extend this stretch, after you feel the underarm stretch, bend sidewards so you feel the stretch down to your waist.

5. Doorway stretch high position: Repeat stretch #1 with the arms reaching up on the doorway as high as you can.

6. Triceps stretch: Place your right hand on your right shoulder as you raise your elbow up by the side of your face, keeping your arm close to your face. Exhale as you press or pull your elbow further with your left hand, trying pull it past your ear. Continue to actively stretch and pull for two seconds. Release your right elbow to your waist. Repeat 10 times. Repeat on the left side.

7. Anterior shoulder and biceps stretch. Clasp your hands behind your backside. Inhale to expand your chest as you squeeze your shoulder blades together. Exhale as you lift your hands, keeping your arms as straight as you can. Stretch actively for two seconds. Keeping the hands clasped, release them to your backside. Repeat 10 times.

If this is too difficult, try the following variation: Reach your straight arms in front of you with your thumbs facing down. Exhale as you sweep them out and back as far as you can, like doing the breast stroke in swimming. Stretch actively for two seconds. Release the arms to your sides and repeat 10 times.

8. Optional stretch for the supraspinatus (part of the rotator cuff): Put your right arm behind your back at your waist. Tilt your head to the left. Grasp your right wrist with your left hand. Exhale as you pull your arm across your waist. Continue actively stretching and pulling for two seconds. Release the tension. Repeat 10 times. To extend this stretch, try to reach your hand upward toward your left shoulder blade..

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