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Tight Shoulders?

If you have shoulder pain, and/or a tight shoulder, this "Sleeper Stretch" may be beneficial.

(You should always contact a Chartered Physiotherapist for guidance with individualized shoulder rehabilitation)

The Sleeper Stretch targets the posterior capsule of the shoulder, which, if tight, can restrict shoulder range of motion, specifically internal rotation, leading to difficulty in certain tasks, and in some cases, pain in the shoulder complex.

To perform the exercise,

- Lie directly on affected shoulder with your head well supported. 

- Bend your arm up to 90dg (level with collar bone) and bend your elbow to 90. 

- Place the hand of the unaffected side just below wrist of affected side, and slowly guide the forearm down towards the bed/ floor. 

- Make sure that you keep the elbow bent at 90 and you keep the upper arm level with the collar bone throughout the stretch. 

- You should feel the stretch towards the back of the arm / shoulder.

- Throughout the stretch you must ensure that you remain directly on the shoulder as it is common to roll backwards onto the shoulder blade.

- Maintain the stretch for at least 30 seconds and it should be held at an intensity that you find mildly uncomfortable. 

- During this 30 second period the intensity of the stretch may lessen as the muscles relax, gently push the forearm further down to maintain stretch but keep within your own level of tolerance.

- You can repeat this exercise 10-15 times, 2-3 times daily.

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