3 of the Worst Shoulder Exercises for Shoulder Pain


Dr. Justin Sullivan, PT, OCS, CFMT

Rotator cuff exercises (internal or external rotation) with a band.  Your rotator cuff is probably not weak or the reason you’re in pain  It is stressed out and overworking. Rotator cuff exercises for a painful shoulder will likely make things worse.  Almost every time a client who comes to us after having failed somewhere else reports that they were doing rotator cuff exercises. 

Deltoid raises.  Front or lateral, efficient and safe deltoid raises require your entire shoulder girdle, spine, and core to be mechanically sound and responsive.  This probably isn’t the case if you are having pain. Without these characteristics, more compensation will occur at the shoulder joint and painful structures.

Pec stretching.  Lengthening limitations in pectoralis minor and major may be part of why your shoulder hurts, but stretching a taut, protective muscle probably will not loosen it up.  A typical corner or wall pec minor stretch puts pressure on the front structures of your shoulder including the capsule and ligaments. This could create more mobility where you do not want it or further irritate already painful structures.

What you SHOULD do…

Is find out WHY your shoulder is being overworked! Sometimes its your ribcage, the neck, or the nerves that are responsible.  When the true cause is identified and fixed, the shoulder becomes instantly more stable, strong and mobile…without pain

Our Physios perform a full-body assessment and can tell you what parts of your system need work.


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