Shoulder Pain Exercises

Today I wanted to talk to you about shoulder pain exercises.

The question came from a client having difficulty performing a corner stretch.

She is having pain when performing the exercise and is wondering if there are any alternatives to the exercise that she can do.

I thought the question was great and decided to share my answer with you.

Let me take a little time to expand on things in the video.

This is a corner stretch:

Corner Stretch Exercises

The corner stretch is excellent for the pectoralis major (chest).  I often recommend my clients perform the stretch in a doorway.  They reach up to the corner of the door and then move into the stretch.  Hence, I call it a doorway stretch.

In the video, I use a tree.  The big thing is the arm is at 135 degrees or in line with the muscle fibers of the chest (pectoralis major).

I find some clients with shoulder pain are not able to do the exercise because:

  • They are not able to get their arm into the position
  • Lack of scapular stability in the shoulder
  • They lack isometric strength in the shoulder
  • It is too much stress on the AC (Acromioclavicular) joint

Many would say, “don’t stretch the shoulder if you have pain.”

This is a poor response.  There are numerous ways of modifying the stretch to eliminate the shoulder pain and stretch out the chest.

Here is one of those ways, doing a Low Doorway Stretch:

Low Doorway Stretch Exercises

If my client cannot do a doorway stretch, I move them into a low doorway stretch.

This stretch modifies things by moving the arm down to the side.  It is away from the body by about 45 degrees.  It is not as effective as the doorway stretch, but it puts less stress on the shoulder, and most people can do it.

Bonus Tip

Feel The Stretch.  FEEL THE STRETCH – You can see in the above two pictures and the above video that I am touching where I should feel the stretch.  This is something that I teach my clients.

Put your hand on the muscle where you should be feeling the stretch.  This makes your clients better aware of the stretch and better understand what is being stretched.

Open Up Collar Bones Exercises

If you cannot do the doorway stretch or the low doorway stretch, try the open-up collar bones stretch.

I like this one because it is excellent for someone with poor shoulder movement.  They can focus on moving the collar bones back by activating the muscles between the shoulder blades (rhomboids and middle fibers of the trapezius).  They start the scapular muscles, work against rounding out the shoulder, and stretch the chest.

I hope this helps you.

Leave a comment below if you have any other ideas or thoughts on this article.

On another note, I just released my Shoulder Pain Solved Program:

Shoulder Pain Solved

If you or your client have Shoulder Pain, I know Shoulder Pain Solved will help you.

Rick Kaselj, MS

P.S. – If you have been reading the blog, you know I have a lot of other videos and articles on shoulder pain.  Below are some that may help you out.

Here are a few other articles that will interest you: