Calcific Tendonitis Exercises

Doctor doing back adjustment
Doctor examining woman's shoulder (Image: Wavebreakmedia/iStock/Getty Images)

Calcific tendonitis happens when calcium deposits in the shoulder cause one of the tendons to become inflamed, which limits range of motion and may be painful. You may experience calcific tendonitis in both or just one of your shoulders. Exercises that stretch your shoulders are beneficial because they maintain and improve the restricted range of motion; exercises that strengthen your shoulders are important for calcific tendonitis because they can reduce pressure on the calcium deposits.

Isometric Internal Rotation

One exercise that strengthens your rotator cuff is the isometric internal rotation exercise. Isometrics train your muscles through contraction without movement to resist and stabilize against an external force. In this case, use a wall as the force against which your shoulder muscles will resist.

Stand next to the outer corner of a wall with your affected arm at your side. Bend your arm to make a right angle, and point your forearm to your side. Touch your palm flat to the wall. Then, press forward with your palm into the wall for 10 seconds. Relax and repeat for a number of repetitions as recommended by your doctor or physical therapist.

Isometric External Rotation

The isometric external rotation uses the same principles to strengthen the shoulder rotators responsible for the opposite movement as internal rotation. Use a wall and the same body position for this exercise as the previous one.

Stand next to the corner with your arm bent to make a right angle perpendicular to your body. Place the back of your hand against the wall. Press and hold for 10 seconds, then relax. Perform the desired number of reps.

External Rotation Stretch

Use a wall to help stretch your rotator cuffs from the same position as the isometric internal rotation exercise. To do so, stand with your hand flat on the wall perpendicular to your torso. Step forward slowly until you feel the stretch in your shoulder. Hold for 20 to 30 seconds.

Seated Rotator Stretch

The seated rotator stretch lengthens the opposite muscles as the external rotation stretch. To perform this exercise, sit in a chair and place your hands on your hips with your thumbs on the front part of your waist and your fingertips on the back. Lean forward and touch your chest to your thighs. With your hands on your hips, let your elbows and shoulders fall toward the floor. Hold for 20 to 30 seconds.

Shoulder Packing

Shoulder packing strengthens your shoulders and upper back muscles. Simply stand up straight with your arms at your sides to do this exercise. First, press your shoulders down and hold for 5 to 10 seconds. Then, retract your shoulder blades to bring the inner portions toward your spine and hold for 5 to 10 seconds. Perform the desired number of reps.

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