Do-It-Yourself Shoulder Rehabilitation


If you have gone to your doctor, chiropractor or physiotherapist and have been diagnosed with a shoulder strain (i.e.: rotator cuff strain, impingement syndrome, etc) but you have been confirmed that there is no tearing of your tissues, you can perform the program below three times per week for 3 to 4 weeks to see how much progress you can make.

Most shoulder strains are the result of weak shoulder girdle muscles. That is, the muscles that attach your shoulder blade to your thorax, when weak, cause the shoulder blade to move too much whenever you move your arm. This increases the wear and tear in the shoulder joint. Further, the rotator cuffs are also usually too weak in patients who have mild to moderate shoulder strains. The job of the rotator cuffs is to anchor your arm bone to your shoulder socket (which is on the shoulder blade).

So, by firming up both the shoulder blade’s stability and the firmness of the arm’s connection to the shoulder blade (via rotator cuffs), you are improving the way the kinetic chain of the whole arm functions. Think of it as “core exercises” for the shoulder and arm. Your strength will increase and your pain will decrease.



External Rotations
– grab theraband with hand of the affected shoulder,
place magazine between elbow and side.
– Head back, chest out, pinch shoulder blades together tightly.
– Elbow bent 90 degrees.
– Start position is with forearm sticking straight forward (perpendicular to theraband).
– Keeping proper form, externally rotate shoulder as far as you can.

2 set of 12-15 repetitions.

Jack Hammers (speed drill):
– stand facing door where theraband is anchored
– grab each end of theraband with both hands
– standard posture
– keep elbows slightly bent, start with hands next to hips
– with straight arms, pull hands as far back as you can, return them no further than hips
(unlike pic)
do as fast as you can for 30 seconds. Rest. Do it once more.

Theraband Rows at 45 degrees
– anchor t-band around doorknob
– grab each end of the t-band, standard posture
– relax shoulders and pinch shoulder blades together

– arms bent and elbows 45 degrees away from your sides
row back as far as you can

– make sure to keep shoulder blades pinch throughout the WHOLE movement

2 sets of 15-20 repetitions

2 thoughts on “Do-It-Yourself Shoulder Rehabilitation

  1. Thank you Dr. Parenteau for this timely advice on shoulder strain and exercises to help relieve pain. I’ve been suffering from arm pain and think it is from sleeping on one side frequently. I’ll try these exercises.

    Hope all is well for you and your family.



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