Posterior Shoulder Capsule Stretch

20 Apr Posterior Shoulder Capsule Stretch

Developing joint range of motion and soft tissue extensibility is imperative for optimal functioning of the kinetic chain. Limitations in joint mobility are often linked to a lack of extensibility of the soft tissues surrounding a specified joint. The result of soft tissue limitations is a corresponding lack of range of motion in the associated joint.

Review of research provided by physical therapist Gray Cook and strength coach Mike Boyle we are aware of the mobility/stability pattern of human movement requires certain joints within the kinetic chain to be mobile. This allows in conjunction with specified levels of stabilization optimal functioning of the kinetic chain during human movement.

One of these joints requiring a large range of motion for optimal functioning is the gleno-humeral joint. The gleno-humeral joint, commonly referred to as the shoulder is a ball and socket joint with a large intended range of motion. Limitations in the shoulder complex are common in the both the general and athletic population.

Why Its’ Important: The ball and socket articular structures of the shoulder joint are designed for a large range of motion. This allows for the upper extremities to execute a variety of athletic activities efficiently such as throwing, hitting, and swinging. A large component of mobility within the gleno-humeral joint is the extensibility of the soft tissues surrounding this joint.

Improves Your: Joint range of motion of the upper extremities.

Target Area: Soft tissues of the posterior shoulder.

The Common Problem: Limitations in soft tissue extensibility of the posterior shoulder lead to a decreased range of motion in the gleno-humeral joint. This corresponding limited range of motion results in decreased neural drive, poor patterning, increased potential for injury, and general dysfunction.

The Solution: The implementation of exercises to address the extensibility of the soft tissues on the posterior portion of the shoulder capsule.

Posterior Capsule Stretch

Set Up:

  • Lay with the right hip in contact with the floor, legs straight, and the right upper arm perpendicular to the shoulder capsule
  • Bend the right elbow to 90-degrees so that the right upper arm in resting on the floor



  • While keeping the shoulder capsule and right upper arm on the floor, grasp your right wrist with the left hand
  • Slowly press the right forearm towards the floor
  • Continue to press the forearm down until a stretch is felt in the right shoulder and hold for 30 seconds
  • Discontinue immediately if a pinch is felt in the right shoulder, and do not allow the right shoulder to elevate or roll forward during the exercise
  • Repeat with the opposite arm
  • Pay strict attention to technique with this exercise, go very slowly with the pressing of the forearm and do not aggressively press the forearm to the floor


About Performance Coach Sean Cochran: Sean Cochran, one of the most recognized performance coaches in sports today. A career spanning positions with 2 major league baseball organizations, over 10 years on the PGA Tour and work with top professionals including three-time Masters, PGA, and British Open Champion Phil Mickelson, future hall of fame Trevor Hoffman, and Cy Young award winner Jake Peavy provides Sean a proven track record of success.  He has been involved in the production of numerous performance videos and authored books including; Performance Golf Fitness, Complete Conditioning for Martial Arts, and Fit to Hit. He has been a presenter of educational seminars for numerous organizations including the world renown Titleist Performance Institute.