Adhesive capsulitis, also known as the frozen shoulder affects up to 5% of the population. Signs and symptoms include: a limited range of both passive and active motions, stiffness, and pain when moving the shoulders. Of course, it is a must to consult with the experts like those working at the Institute of Sport Physio for a clear diagnosis. Aside from the therapy done in-house for Physio Newmarket and Grafton patients, there are exercises you can do at home to help with your frozen shoulder, such as:

Different Exercises for Frozen Shoulders


  1. Codman’s Pendulum Stretch

This is a great way to stretch the shoulder without causing too much strain. Simply find a place to rest your head, with the unaffected arm used as forehead support. Next, relax and allow the affected arm to dangle towards the floor. Sway your hips back and forth to let the momentum swing your arm. Do small circles both in a clockwise and counter clockwise direction as your hips move. Do a few repetitions. Hold a small weight when your mobility starts to improve.

  1. Overhead Stretching

 Find a table or counter for your forearms to rest on. Position yourself that the spine stays neutral. Gently rock back like you are about to sit on a chair while maintaining a slight chin tuck. Then move forward to allow the shoulder to reach full elevation. Repeat multiple times to help improve mobility of shoulder.

  1. Sleeper Stretching

 This is best for those with a mild case of frozen shoulder. First, lie on the side of the affected shoulder. Extend the arm straight and bend the knees. Next, bend the arm to form a 90-degree angle with the forearm raised off the ground and the fingers pointing to the ceiling. With the help of the unaffected arm, push the other arm toward the ground with the palms facing down. Hold the stretch for 30 to 60 seconds and perform this 2 to 3 times a day.

  1. External Rotation Stretching

 These steps are for an injured right shoulder. First, you need to lie on your back, placing the right arm to the side. Use a small towel roll and place this under the elbow to help keep the arm level. Hold a stick and use the left hand to push the right hand away from the body.  Repeat, back and forth multiple times. If your mobility is getting better, try holding the stretch for up to 30 seconds.

  1. Cross Body Stretching

 While lying on your back, retract the affected shoulder blade by keeping it flat in the surface. Elevate the arm to 90-degrees or less. Using your unaffected arm, pull the elbow of the other arm across your chest, while ensuring the shoulder blades remain flat. Change to a lower angle if you feel any pain until you find a comfortable position. Hold the stretch for 30 seconds and repeat multiple times.

Remember; always warm up before doing any of these exercises to avoid causing more injury. You can do so by taking a warm 10 – 15 minute bath or by simply putting a moist towel or heating pad on the affected area. Before proceeding with any of these exercises, consult with Graeme Hayhow first by calling (09) 379 5767. This is to ensure proper diagnosis and treatment.



Frozen Shoulder Exercises and Advice,

Frozen Shoulder Exercises for Pain Relief,