Health Care First

Including - Ferrybridge Medical Centre, Pinfold Surgery, Elizabeth Court Surgery, Castleford Health Centre

Health Information

Shoulder Pain Exercises

Shoulder Pain Exercises

Arthritis Research UK logo

This leaflet has been provided by Arthritis Research UK, the national charity committed to preventing the onset of arthritis, developing a cure for arthritis and transforming the lives of those with arthritis.

This leaflet provides simple exercises that may help with shoulder pain.

  • Most cases of shoulder pain aren't caused by anything serious and will ease within 2 weeks.
  • You can take painkillers to ease pain. Taking them before exercise can help you stay active without causing extra pain.
  • Using an ice pack, learning how to protect your joints and being aware of your posture will help cases of shoulder pain.
  • Try the exercises suggested here to help ease pain and prevent future symptoms.

Door lean

Door lean
  • Stand in a doorway with both arms on the wall slightly above your head.
  • Slowly lean forward until you feel a stretch in the front of your shoulders.
  • Hold for 15-30 seconds.
  • Repeat 3 times.
  • Note: this exercise isn't suitable if you have a shoulder impingement.

Door press

Door press right
  • Stand in a doorway with your elbow bent at a right angle and the back of your wrist against the doorframe.
  • Try to push your arm outwards against the doorframe.
  • Hold for 5 seconds.
  • Do 3 sets of 10 repetitions on each side.
Door press left
  • Use your other arm and, still with your elbow at a right angle, push your palm towards the doorframe.
  • Hold for 5 seconds.
  • Do 3 sets of 10 repetitions on each side.

Shoulder stretch

Shoulder stretch
  • Stand and raise your shoulders.
  • Hold for 5 seconds.
  • Squeeze your shoulder blades back and together and hold for 5 seconds.
  • Pull your shoulder blades downward and hold for 5 seconds.
  • Relax and repeat 10 times.

Pendulum exercise

Pendulum exercise
  • Stand with your good hand resting on a chair.
  • Let your other arm hang down and try to swing it gently backwards and forwards and in a circular motion.
  • Repeat about 5 times.
  • Try this 2-3 times a day.

Content used with permission from the Arthritis Research UK website: Exercises to manage shoulder pain. Copyright for this leaflet is with Arthritis Research UK.

Disclaimer: This article is for information only and should not be used for the diagnosis or treatment of medical conditions. EMIS has used all reasonable care in compiling the information but makes no warranty as to its accuracy. Consult a doctor or other healthcare professional for diagnosis and treatment of medical conditions. For details see our conditions.

Original Author:
Arthritis Research UK
Current Version:
Arthritis Research UK
Peer Reviewer:
Arthritis Research UK
Document ID:
29101 (v1)
Last Checked:
Next Review: