Medication & Exercises

Shoulder Exercises

One key element of your recovery involves regular exercises to restore your normal shoulder motion and flexibility. The goal is a gradual return to everyday work and recreational activities. Early in your recovery, your provider or physical therapist may recommend that you exercise from 10 to 15 minutes 2 or 3 times per day. Make sure that whatever exercises you do have been approved by your provider or therapist. The following simple exercises provide a sample of those that you can easily do at home or at work.

Click here for a printable Shoulder Exercises PDF


 
Circular pendulum example

Circular Pendulum:

Bend forward 90 degrees at your waist, using a table for support. Rock your body in a circular pattern to move your arm clockwise 10 times. Next, do the same motion counter-clockwise 10 times.

 
Example of Shoulder Flexion while sitting up

Shoulder Flexion #1:

Clasp your hands together and lift your arms above your head. Keep your elbows as straight as possible. You can do this exercise while lying down, or sitting up. Repeat the motion 10 times.

Example of Shoulder Flexion while lying down

 

Supported Shoulder Rotation:

Keep your elbow in place and your shoulder blades down and together. Slide your forearm back and forth, repeating 10 times.

Supported Shoulder Rotation example
 

Shoulder Internal Rotation example

Shoulder Internal Rotation:

Bring your hand behind your back and across to the opposite side. Repeat 10 times.

Shoulder Flexion #2 example

Shoulder Flexion #2:

Raise your arm to point to the ceiling, keeping your elbows straight. Hold position for 10 seconds. Repeat 3 times.

 

Shoulder Abduction:

Raise your arm out to the side with your elbow straight and your palm facing down. Do not shrug your shoulder or tilt at your torso. Hold 10 seconds. Repeat 3 times.

 
Isometric Shoulder Extension example

Isometric Shoulder Extension:

Stand with your back against the wall and your arms straight at your sides. Keeping your elbows straight, push your arms back into the wall. Hold for 5 seconds, then relax. Repeat 10 times.

 

Isometric Shoulder External Rotation example

Isometric Shoulder External Rotation:

Stand with the injured side of your body against a wall. Bend your elbow 90 degrees. Push your arm into the wall. Hold for 5 seconds, then relax. Repeat 10 times.

Shoulder Flexion #2 example

Isometric Shoulder Internal Rotation:

Stand in a corner or in a door frame. Place the injured arm against the wall around the corner, bending your elbow 90 degrees. Push your arm into the wall. Hold for 5 seconds, then relax. Repeat 10 times.