Shoulder Exercises for Physical Therapy

The anatomy of the shoulder joint makes it one of the most flexible joints of the body. This joint enables to move the arm in complete 360° and also aids in back and forth movement of the arms. Though it is very flexible, its anatomy is so complicated that it makes the joint very unstable. It is therefore, susceptible to injuries and dislocation, which is very painful. The initial treatment recommends only rest. Further, it can be rehabilitated with help of physical therapy exercises. These exercises not only help to recover from the problem, but they also help in strengthening the muscles and joint.

Physical Therapy Exercises

Physical therapy is nothing but a treatment that involves exercises, which help in rehabilitation of the affected joint. Most of them involve muscle strengthening exercises and exercises that improve the range of motion. Shoulder exercises have proved to be very useful in relocating the affected joint. Dislocation or injury to this joint is very painful and needs to be treated at the earliest. Initially, the patient should take a lot of rest, and consume medications prescribed by the physician. Physical therapy should be performed only when the joint has become strong enough for stretching. Given below are some of the stabilization exercises that help to improve the flexibility and increase the range of motion of the affected joint.

Exercise #1

Sit in a chair, and rest your unaffected arm on your thigh. Keep your back straight, raise your affected arm outside; keep your elbow straight, and face the palm in downward direction. Make sure you do not shrug your shoulders. Now, raise your arms to bring them to the shoulder level, and again bring them down to form a right angle arc. Repeat the exercise 3 more times, and do one set 3 times a day.

Exercise #2

This exercise helps to relieve the pain. First, lie down on your stomach, and position yourself at the edge of the bed so that the affected arm hangs down over the edge of the bed. Let the affected arm hang freely, and drop down the shoulder blade. Now, slowly move your arm in forward and backward direction without using your neck muscles. Initially, you will experience a shooting pain in your joint. But the intensity of the pain will reduce eventually. Increase the swing angle step by step and also increase the swinging time.

Exercise #3

To perform this exercise, you can sit in a chair, or stand in an upright position. Support your affected arm by placing its elbow on the palm of other hand. Now, simply move the forearm in to-and-fro motion. Do this exercise 5 times. Again, get into the initial position, and move the arm side to side.

Exercise #4

Stand in an upright position with your back rested against the wall. Hang your arms towards your sides, and keep a hip-width apart distance between your legs. Place the palm of the affected arm on the surface of the wall, and push it back into the wall. Hold the position for 5 counts, and relax the arm. Repeat the exercise 10 more times.

It is recommended that physical therapy exercises for the shoulder should be performed only when suggested by the physician. It may happen that the joint is weak and may not sustain the stretching experienced while performing the exercises.

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