From lifting, pulling and pushing, to carrying, the shoulder joint is key to your mobility. Because of this, it’s common to feel tension or pain in the shoulder joint, particularly after doing repetitive movements. You can reduce stress and strain on the shoulder joint by performing stretches and exercises to improve shoulder motion and function.
Here are five easy stretches to help you relieve shoulder pain at home with limited equipment.
- Neck Release – Sit up straight and slowly bring your chin toward your chest until you feel the stretch in the back of your neck. Gently lean you head to the left, to stretch the right shoulder. Then, after slowly bringing your head back to center, lean to the right side to stretch your left shoulder. Hold the stretch for up to one minute for each side. Repeat this stretch 3 -5 times, while focusing on relaxing and loosening the shoulder muscles.
- Downward Dog Pose – Commonly practiced in yoga, the downward dog is an inversion pose used to strengthen and stretch the shoulder and back muscles. Kneel and place your hands parallel to your knees. Press into your hands, lifting your hips up. Keep your spine straight and lean your head toward your feet so the shoulders are flexed. Hold the pose for one minute and repeat up to 3 more times.
- Pendulum – Lean forward, place your right hand on a counter or waist-high table for support. Let your left arm relax by your side. Gently swing you left arm forward and backward, in a circular motion. Repeat the movement 8-10 times. Switch sides and then repeat the sequence.
- Sleeper Stretch – Lie down on your left-hand side on a flat, firm surface. Keep your shoulder under you and bend your left arm to a 90-degree angle. Use your right arm to push the left arm down; you should feel the stretch in the back of your left shoulder. Hold the stretch for 30 seconds, then relax for 30 seconds. Switch sides and repeat the movements four times on each side.
- Cross-Over Arm Stretch – Start by placing your feet about shoulder width apart. Relax your shoulders, gently pull your right arm across your chest. Hold your upper right arm using your left hand, pulling it until you can feel the stretch through the back of your shoulder. Hold the stretch for thirty seconds. Repeat the stretch 3 times. Switch sides and perform the cross-over movement with the opposite arm.
Have you experienced an acute injury or trauma to your shoulder? Is shoulder pain affecting your sleep or your ability to complete everyday tasks? Don’t wait – make an appointment with one of our fellowship-trained shoulder specialists today!
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