If you’re recovering from an injury, surgery, or strain in the shoulder area, exercise can be a great part of regaining strength and mobility. But it’s important to know which exercises are most beneficial for shoulder recovery and pain relief.
The use of specific shoulder exercises can significantly improve shoulder joint mobility, as well as reduce pain and improve overall shoulder strength. Some of the most common types of shoulder exercises used for shoulder recovery are range of motion (ROM), flexibility, strengthening, and stability exercises.
Range of Motion Exercises
Range of motion exercises are great ways to improve shoulder flexibility, decrease pain, and reduce muscle tension. ROM exercises typically involve performing movements through an entire range of motion and can help increase blood flow to shoulder joints to assist in healing. Examples of ROM exercises for shoulder recovery include shoulder stretches and shoulder circles.
Flexibility exercises can help increase shoulder strength and your overall range of motion. Simple arm swings, shoulder shrugs, and shoulder rolls can help increase flexibility and decrease pain and tightness. To improve shoulder mobility, try some stretching exercises specifically targeting your shoulder joint, such as reaching with the arm stretched out and circles with the arms.
Strengthening exercises are critical in helping to aid in recovery and rehabilitation, especially after an injury or surgery. However, it’s important to remember that risk of re-injury is high so you should start with basic exercises and gradually progress to more advanced exercises. Try some simple resisted exercises for the shoulder such as internal and external rotations, wall pushes, and cable exercises.
Part of addressing a shoulder issue is to build back stability to the shoulder joint itself. Stability exercises help to increase core strength, target supportive muscles, and improve postural alignment. Examples include the plank, side planes, and rotator cuff exercises.
Overall, proper adaption of a structured exercise plan, under the guidance of a physiotherapist, can help you to improve, strengthen and recover from shoulder injuries, trauma and