3 exercises to stretch out tight shoulders & upper back

Posted by: Anne

Tightness through your shoulders and thoracic spine (upper back) can cause an achy pain that is difficult to shift. Try the following exercises twice daily for a week and you should start to feel the difference!

1. Spine twist:

Lying on your side, make sure your hips are straight. Have both hands out infront of you. Lift your top hand up
and behind you, following the hand with your eyeline. Make sure your hips stay straight.
Repeat x 10-15 both sides.



2. Shoulder blade stretch (subscapularis):

Hold a broomstick in your left hand. With your right hand reach up and back over your shoulder to grab the broomstick so that your little finger is pointing up.  The broomstick should now be resting against the outside of your right bicep. Pull your right hand out to the right so that your elbow is in a 90 degree angle. Now push the stick upwards with your left hand. You should feel a stretch in your right shoulder blade. Hold the stretch for 10 secs. Repeat x 3.

susbscapularis stretch

3. Tennis ball soft tissue release:

Get a tennis ball/spikey ball/golf ball and use it to press into tight spots in muscle. You can do this lying down but for the neck/shoulder area sometimes its easier to do against a wall. Just press the ball into the muscle and gently roll side to side. If it feels sore you are doing it right! Try this for 3-5mins in one area at a time.

spiky ball upper back release


If your shoulder/upper back pain persists, you may need physio. Call Anne at 086 358 2911 to make an appointment.