What do I avoid during the shoulder-internal rotator stretch?

Shoulder internal rotation is commonly addressed during shoulder rehabilitation. Glenohumeral internal rotation deficit is common postural distortion that affects many individuals with that maintain a static posture or have pattern overload. Glenohumeral internal rotation is often the primary cause of many upper extremity injuries.  Thus, stretching to improve internal rotator flexibility is important.
The biggest mistake is see when individuals perform the internal rotation stretch is stabilizing the scapula. The rotator cuff muscles and shoulder capsule which is being stretched are attached to the scapula. Because of this the scapula will tend to move as you stretch yielding no results. To prevent this perform the stretch while side-lying on a table or leaning against a wall. The table / wall will act as a stabilizer holding the scapula in place and allowing for a proper stretch.
Another common error when performing this stretch is overstretching. The shoulder joint is a highly moveable, yet highly unstable joint. Stretching beyond the limitations of joint can lead to significant shoulder injuries. Always stretch until you feel slight tugging, hold the position and repeat. Overstretching does not produce better flexibility.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.