A Novel Stretch for Adhesive Capsulitis

Radiographic and surgical evidence exists that describes the coraco-humeral ligament (ChL) as a major contributor to lack of external rotation in patients diagnosed with frozen shoulder.

This single-patient case-report describes the use of a positional stretching technique targeting the ChL on a female diagnosed with phase I frozen shoulder. Although the improvements in shoulder mobility cannot definitively be attributed to the 4-week stretching exercise program, the technique seems worth trying clinically.

The coraco-humeral lig. stretching technique:


  • In side lying (no trunk rotation allowed), the patient holds a broomstick /cane with the affected arm
  • The shoulder is placed in extension, lateral rotation and adduction as tolerated
  • The forearm is maintained in supination
  • Adduct the shoulder by slowly sliding the hand down the stick until a non-painful tolerable stretch is felt in the shoulder. Hold for 5 minutes and increase to 15 minutes in 2 weeksThe purpose of the cane or broomstick is to help the patient gradually slide the hand down into extension and adduction and to help keep the shoulder in lateral rotation.
    Posted on: January 26, 2010

    Categories: Shoulder

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