Exercises That Help Ease Shoulder Arthritis Symptoms

Arthritis can affect the shoulder joints and there are exercises that ease the pain, stiffness and swelling brought about by this condition. When a flare up occurs, it can have a major impact on a person’s mobility and quality of life.

It’s not uncommon for people with arthritis to forego exercise. It can be quite a challenge to engage in physical activity as the symptoms can be debilitating. Nonetheless, it’s important to keep the joints active and strong to maintain range of motion as well as to ease the pain.

Here are some recommended exercises to help you strengthen and stretch the muscles surrounding your shoulder joint:

1. Shoulder elevation stretch

If you want to improve your shoulder’s range of motion a shoulder elevation stretch should be performed on a regular basis.

How to do it:

  • Lie flat on your back.
  • With both hands shoulder-distance apart, hold a stick or broom handle and place it on the thighs.
  • Gently and slowly raise the stick over your chest to your head to the point where it almost touches the floor.
  • Lower the stick back to your thighs
  • Do 10 reps per set and 3 sets at a time.

2. Shoulder rotation stretch

To enhance flexibility in your shoulder joints, do this exercise.

How to do it:

  • Lie flat on your back.
  • Bend your elbow with both arms on each side.
  • Hold the stick over your chest.
  • Gently move the stick to the right until you notice a stretch in your right shoulder.
  • Return to center.
  • Then gently move the stick to the left until you notice a stretch in your left shoulder.
  • Return to center.
  • Do 10 reps per set and 3 sets at a time.

3. Shoulder blade rotation

This exercise also helps increase your range of movement.

How to do it:

  • Stand straight with both feet hip-width apart.
  • Place both hands at the sides.
  • Slowly raise your shoulders as close to your ears. Stay in this position for 5 seconds.
  • Slowly squeeze your shoulder blades together. Stay in this position for 5 seconds.
  • Slowly pull your shoulder blades downward. Stay in this position for 5 seconds.
  • Repeat the whole sequence 10X.

4. Pendulum exercise

If you’re experiencing chronic pain in your shoulders, try this exercise.

How to do it:

  • Bend your body forward and place one hand on a counter or chair for support.
  • Place the other hand loosely on one side of your body.
  • Using motion from the hips and legs, gently swing your free hand back and forth, left to ride in a circular movement.
  • Repeat this 30X and then switch hands.

5. Door lean exercise

This exercise stretches the shoulder muscles in the shoulders and strengthens the joints.

How to do it:

  • With your body facing the doorway, raise both hands over your head.
  • Place your left hand on the door frame and gently lean your body forward.
  • You should experience some shoulder tension at this point.
  • Stay in this position for 30 seconds.
  • Repeat the same this time switching to your right hand.

Do each sequence 3X.

Before you do any of these exercises for shoulder arthritis, be sure to warm up for at least 5-10 minutes to avoid injury. Be careful when doing the exercise and if you experience any pain, you should stop right away.

In gyms like Gold’s Gym there are fitness coaches who can create a customized exercise program specifically for you.

Here are some video demonstrations of shoulder exercises you can try today:

Shoulder Arthritis Stretches & Exercises

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