Shoulder pain can quickly make everyday tasks difficult. You might go to reach that jar sitting on the top shelf in your kitchen, only to be met with aches and pain. However, immobilization of the shoulder isn’t often recommended, since this can actually lead to worse issues such as a frozen shoulder. So, what can you do?
In this article, we’re going to examine five stretches to help relieve your shoulder tightness and pain, guiding you toward healing and recovery.
Shoulder Stretches for Pain Relief and Tightness
You can perform the following stretches daily, up to three times. It’s important to not go over this amount since it is possible to overstretch and cause harm. If at any point, you feel pain, ease off or stop. Aim to only go to the point before pain for each exercise. Now, let’s dive in!
1. The Pendulum Exercise
This exercise helps create space between the shoulder joint. Impingement syndrome, a common cause of shoulder pain, happens when rotator cuff tendons become pinched or compressed with the shoulder space. Thus, this exercise helps relieve pain associated with this.
Find a stable object, such as a table, to rest your good arm on. Bend forward at the waist. Allow your affected arm to hang. Gently begin moving your affected arm in a circular motion. Perform 10 circles one way, then 10 circles the opposite way.
2. Across the Chest Stretch
This stretch can help improve and maintain your shoulder flexibility and range of motion. If you begin to feel pain when performing this exercise, try lowering your arm slightly.
To do this stretch, bring your affected arm straight across your chest. Place it in the crease of your other arm’s elbow and hold it there for 30 seconds.
3. Chest Stretch
If you sit all day long, this is a good stretch to get into the habit of doing regularly. The chest stretch opens up the front of the body, helping to bring the shoulders down and back into their proper alignment.
Find a doorway or corner to perform this stretch in. Bend your elbow at almost shoulder height and place your forearms on the wall or doorframe. Gently, lean or step into the stretch. You should feel a gentle stretching sensation through your chest. Hold this stretch for 30 seconds.
4. Child’s Pose
You might think this yoga pose isn’t relevant when it comes to the shoulder joint. However, the child’s pose is actually a wonderful way to gently stretch the front of the shoulders.
Start on all fours for this stretch, and gently sit your buttocks back on your heels, while keeping your arms outstretched in front of you. If it’s comfortable, rest your head on the ground or your mat. Hold for 30 seconds to a minute.
5. Trapezius and Levator Scapulae Stretch
This is another stretch that is excellent for individuals who sit all day for work. You can even perform this stretch in your work chair if you so choose.
Start by sitting up tall. Place your affected arm’s hand underneath your buttocks. Gently move your head away from your affected side, bringing your ear close to your opposite shoulder. Pause here for 20-30 seconds. Then, bring your gaze toward your armpit, again, holding for 20-30 seconds. When you pause, if you don’t feel enough of a stretch, use your opposite hand to gently pull your head in the correct direction.
If home remedies and stretches don’t work, you may want to consider visiting your local Lithia chiropractor. The At Last Chiropractic team is here to help you move away from pain and toward a healthier and happier life. If you’re ready to say goodbye to pain, book your appointment with our compassionate and caring team today. We can’t wait to meet you and help you achieve your goals and more.