What Causes Limited Range of Motion in Shoulder

Reduced movement in the shoulder is a common trait in our society today. This is largely due to the fact we are human ‘doings’, often more than human ‘beings’. We use our bodies to complete manual tasks, in play and in work, and frequently sit in positions that then change our skeletal structures. Limited range of motion in shoulders is caused by posture, injury, and pre-existing medical conditions. 



This change in our skeleton structure in turn affects the length of our muscles, tendons and ligaments (as they are attached to the bones). Consequently, our posture is negatively impacted. Good news is, we can positively change it too.



A further cause of reduction of shoulder range is injury. This is often preceded by poor posture. The reason for this is that ‘load’ is now placed unevenly on the altered lengths and strengths of the muscles, ligaments and tendons in, and around the shoulder. Examples of injuries that limit range in the shoulder include but are not limited to; rotator-cuff related injury, shoulder dislocation, shoulder fracture, labral tears of the shoulder and the previously called ‘impingement’ syndrome, to name a few.


Pre-existing medical conditions

Last but not least comes our pre-existing and acquired medical conditions. This can include spina bifida, scoliosis, cerebral palsy, and then strokes, spinal cord injury as examples. These neurological and orthopaedic conditions all change our musculoskeletal make up, often giving rise to a reduction in available shoulder range.


To conclude

Tightness and weakness are the two key factors at play in all 3 of the above causes. Depending upon the cause, you would be best suited to seek out a Physiotherapist in order to put effort behind the right methods to improve your shoulder range. As ever, due to our special partnership with The Online Physiotherapist, you are able to book in for a free Physio consultation with Tim.

More on Shoulder Range of Motion:

1. How to Get Full Range of Motion in Shoulder

2. How to Regain Range of Motion in Shoulder

3. How to Improve Range of Motion in Shoulder

4. What Causes Limited Range of Motion in Shoulder


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