Shoulder Dislocation Exercise

Participation in contact sports like karate, rugby or football can often result in shoulder dislocations. The shoulder is a very complex mechanical joint and prone to disabling injuries like dislocations. An exposed shoulder can pop out of its socket if it gets struck unexpectedly by a powerful force that pushes it up and back. Shoulder dislocation can also occur if you fall hard on a rigid surface. Rehabilitation after a shoulder dislocation relies heavily on exercise. Let's explore shoulder dislocation exercises that you can perform for rehabilitating your dislocated shoulders.

Shoulder Dislocation Exercise

The following are some exercises that can help you in getting your dislocated shoulder working again. Consult a physiotherapist before attempting any of these exercises.

1. Shoulder Flexion, Abduction and Lateral Rotation

  • Sit down in a comfortable position and start moving your affected arm forwards and backwards while supporting it with your other arm as far as the pain allows. This is shoulder flexion.
  • Keeping your arm supported, start moving it from side to side as far as the pain allows. This is shoulder abduction.
  • Hold the wrist of the affected arm and bring it to 90 degrees to the body while keeping the elbow into your side. This is shoulder lateral rotation.

2. Isometric Extension and Flexion

Isometric exercises are static contractions that don't involve any movement. In isometric extension, you will have to stand with your back against the wall and try to push it back with your affected arm while keeping your wrist and elbow straight. In isometric flexion, you will have to stand facing the wall and then try to push it back with your affected arm while keeping your wrist and elbow straight. Repeat both of these exercises at least 5 times.

3. Isometric Adduction and Abduction

In isometric adduction, you will have to place a rolled up newspaper or small pillow in between your torso and affected arm and then squeeze inwards. Keep on squeezing the pillow for at least 5 seconds. In isometric abduction, you will have to stand in a side-on position to a wall, keeping the affected arm towards the wall. With the wrist of your affected arm placed against the wall, push outwards and keep doing it for at least 5 seconds.

4. Isometric External and Internal Rotation

In isometric external rotation, you will have to stand in front of a door and place the back of your hand against its frame. Keeping the elbow bent at 90 degrees, push the hand against the door frame for 5 seconds. In isometric internal rotation, you will have to stand in front of a door and place the palm of your hand against its frame. Keeping the elbow bent at 90 degrees, push the palm against the door frame for 5 seconds.

5. Mobility Exercises

  • Get a stick and try to raise it above your head while holding it in both hands. This is shoulder flexion.
  • Stand while holding the stick in both hands and try to raise your affected arm towards the side while keeping the elbow straight. This is shoulder abduction.
  • Stand straight and hold the stick in both hands behind your back. Now try to move the stick away from your body without bending your elbows. This is shoulder extension.

6. Scapula Setting Exercises

Scapula setting exercises help in aligning and supporting the shoulder blade. Lie down on your stomach and have your hands by your side. Now, move your shoulder blade backwards and down your back and hold this position for 5 seconds.

This shoulder dislocation exercise works the lower trapezius muscle. For working the serratus anterior muscle, lie down on your back with your elbow straight and your arm at 90 degrees to the body and try to lift your arm towards the roof.

7. Shoulder Strengthening with Theraband

Make use of a Theraband and tie one of its ends to a door handle. Stand in front of the door on which you have tied the Theraband and hold its free end in the hand of your affected arm. Keeping your elbows in a bent position, try to pull the band backwards.

This exercise will strengthen your shoulder extensors. You can use the same exercise for strengthening your shoulder flexors by standing backwards and pushing the band forward as if punching someone.

8. Advanced Scapula Setting Exercises

Lie down on your stomach and place your hands above your head. Now, pull your shoulder backwards and down you back and lift your arms up in the air. Remain in this position for 5 seconds. This shoulder dislocation exercise works on the lower trapezius muscle. For working the serratus anterior muscle, get on all fours and pull your shoulder blades backwards by pushing your chest upwards and lift your unaffected arm in the air for 5 seconds.

9. Weight Bearing Exercises

Stand 2 foot lengths away from the wall and place both your hands on the wall in front of you. Lean towards the wall and lower yourself as far as you can and then come back to your starting position. You can also do this exercise by getting on all fours in such a way that your upper legs and back are in line, and then lowering yourself to the floor and come back while keeping the back straight and head steady. 

 
 
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