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How To Prevent Shoulder Overuse Syndrome With 5 Exercises

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Positive Coaching Alliance is proud to share information on shoulder injury prevention from Midwest Orthopaedics at Rush, the team physicians for the Chicago Bulls and Chicago White Sox.

Shoulder Overuse Syndrome is more prevalent than ever before in youth sports, particularly in ‘overhead’ sports like Baseball and Swimming. Although rules are in place to avoid extreme repetition, injuries still happen and Midwest Orthopaedics has outlined ways to identify and avoid shoulder overuse, as well as exercises for prevention.

Midwest Ortho suggests that, in addition to the exercises listed below, warming up properly by stretching, playing a variety of positions to avoid the same repeated motions, and concentrating on good mechanics and technique can help limit the chances of shoulder overuse injury. Above all, athletes should always make it clear to coaches and parents if they are experiencing any shoulder discomfort.


1) Shoulder Internal Rotation (Isometric)
Stand at a corner of a wall or in a doorframe. Place the involved arm against the wall around the corner, bending your elbow 90 degrees. Push your arm into the wall.

2) Shoulder Internal Rotation (Active)
Bring hand behind back and across to the opposite side. Hold for 10 seconds.

3) Shoulder External Rotation (Isometric)
Stand with the involved side of your body against a wall. Bend your elbow 90 degrees. Push your arm into the wall. Hold for 5 seconds, and then relax.

4) Shoulder Flexion (Active)
Raise arm to point to ceiling, keeping elbows straight.

5) Shoulder Adduction (Isometric)
Press upper arm against a small pillow alongside your body. Hold for 5 seconds.

Download the PDF below for more information on Shoulder Overuse Syndrome.

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