Are your shoulders feeling tight, stiff, and painful? Exercises that target the muscles in your shoulders will help to relieve some of the pain. As a bonus, they will also increase your mobility and strengthen your muscles in the long term.
Shoulder exercises are simple to do. However, remember that you should not push yourself too hard, especially if you are not used to exercising daily. If you feel pain while you are stretching your muscles, stop immediately. Seek professional physiotherapy treatment to ensure that your body functions as normal.
Are you ready to get started? Below are seven exercises to relieve shoulder pain. Of course, you don’t have to do all of these exercises one after the other, every single day. Just adding at least one or two of them to your daily routine could make a difference in relieving your shoulder pain.
1. Neck release
If you often feel a lot of tension in your neck and shoulders, try this neck release exercise. Start by sitting or standing straight and lower your chin toward your chest. Then, gently tilt your head to the right, and hold this position for 1 minute. You should feel a stretch in your right shoulder and on the side of your neck.
Repeat on the left side to stretch your left shoulder as well. You can do the entire exercise 3 to 5 times. When you finish, the tension in your neck should be relieved.
2. Across-the-chest stretch
You can do across-the-chest stretches to increase your flexibility and strengthen the muscles surrounding your shoulder joint. It can also help reduce your shoulder pain. While standing or sitting straight, lift your right arm and bring it across your chest. Place your left hand on your elbow to gently push on your right arm so your shoulder muscles can stretch.
Keep this position for one minute. Then, bring your left arm across your chest, and push it gently with your right hand. You can repeat the entire exercise 3 to 5 times.
3. Latissimus dorsi stretch
Latissimus dorsi is the name of large triangular muscles that allow you to use your arms to lift some weight. These important muscles also help you breathe. To do a latissimus dorsi stretch, stand with your arms above your head. Bend your right arm so your hand can be behind your back and grab your elbow with your left hand.
Gently push down your elbow to stretch your muscles. Hold this position for 30 seconds, then repeat on the other side.
4. Seated twist
A seated twist is an exercise that will gently stretch your shoulders and your neck. Sit straight on a chair, with your ankles aligned under your knees. Make sure your hips keep facing forward and slowly twist your upper body to the right, as if you want to look at something behind you.
You can place your right hand on the back of your chair. Hold this position for 30 seconds, then start again by twisting to the left. Repeat four more times on each side.
5. Eagle arms spinal roll
This is another exercise that will stretch your shoulders, and you can do it while sitting on a chair. Lift your arms, then bring them in front of you and cross your elbows, with your right arm on top. Bend your elbows, place your forearms together, and then bring your palms together.
Hold this position for 15 seconds. Repeat the exercise while bringing your left arm on top as you cross your elbows.
6. Shoulder raise with exercise band
If you have a low resistance exercise band at home, you can do this shoulder raise exercise. Stand up with your right foot on one end of your resistance band.
Hold the other end of the band with your right hand and lift your arm to tighten the band. Don’t bend your arm at the elbow. Repeat the exercise nine more times, then start again on your left side.
7. Downward dog pause
If you are familiar with yoga, you know how to do this exercise. The downward dog pause will stretch your shoulders and your back muscles, strengthening them. Start this exercise on your hands and knees, on a padded mat if you have one. Your shoulders should be over your wrists, and your hips should be over your knees.
Next, raise your knees gently, and place your toes on the mat. Extend your legs and keep your spine straight while bending at the waist. Your body will look like an inverted V. Hold this pose for 1 minute, then slowly get back to your initial position.