Frozen Shoulder Exercises

Frozen shoulder syndrome is an excruciatingly painful and impairing condition, which stiffens the shoulders and takes them out of action. Also known as adhesive capsulitis, this condition is characterized by restricted motion of the shoulder. Frozen shoulder exercises can help ease out the shoulders slowly.


To understand the causes, you need to know the anatomy of a shoulder. Frozen shoulder syndrome causes the capsule surrounding the shoulder joint to get compressed and form a connective healing tissue, called a scar tissue. The cause which triggers this condition is not exactly known yet. Exercises are known to ease the pain.

People develop a frozen shoulder, in the aftermath of a traumatic injury, but that is not the direct cause of stiffening. Some probable factors which can trigger this condition are:

  • Age: People in the age group of 40 to 60 are seen to be susceptible to this syndrome.
  • Endocrine Problems: Thyroid problems and endocrine abnormalities may cause it.
  • Injury: People in the process of recovery from shoulder injuries, are affected by it.
  • Systemic Problems: Several other systemic disorders like heart disorders and Parkinson’s disease have been connected with this syndrome.

Preventive and Healing Exercises

The exercise routines that you follow, should be performed very slowly and without jerky movements. Consult a certified medical practitioner before going for these exercises. Do not go ahead with them without confirming them with a doctor. Here are the promised exercises.

Biceps Stretch
Stand tall and face a wall. Let the distance between you and the wall be about 6 inches. Raise your affected arm out slowly on one side and place it (palm down), against the wall. Keeping your elbows straight, twist or rotate your body in the opposite direction of your raised arm till you feel a stretch in your bicep muscles. Hold this position for about 15 seconds and then start over again. Do it at least three times a day.

Pectoral Stretch
Position yourself either in a doorway or a corner and stand upright. Place both your hands on the door frame or the wall, at a level slightly over your head in slow motion. Then lean forward slowly till you feel a slight stretch in your shoulders. Hold yourself in that position for about 20 seconds. Repeat the whole movement sequence three times.

Scapular Motion
This is a shrugging exercise which you may be familiar with from your school drill. Stand straight and first shrug your shoulders in the upward direction and hold it for some time. Then squeeze your shoulders backwards so that your shoulder blades are squeezed together and hold them that way for some seconds before going back to the starting position. Lastly, push your shoulders down like you are putting your hands in the back pocket. Take a break and repeat the sequence again.

These exercises should be made to be a part of your regular warm-up routine, even after your frozen shoulder has recovered. Regular exercise keeps the muscles supple and flexible.

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