Stretching Under the Shoulder Blades

by Lisa M. Wolfe, Demand Media
    Stretch the muscle beneath your shoulder blades for better posture.

    Stretch the muscle beneath your shoulder blades for better posture.

    Fortunately, your shoulder blades are moveable, making it easier to stretch the muscle located underneath the bone. This muscle is also easy to identify because the name subscapularis gives a clue to its location. Sub- means under and the scapularis is your shoulder blade. Think about combing the hair on the back of your head and you'll have an idea of how to stretch this small, but important area. You improve your shoulder flexibility, which ultimately improves your posture.

    Items you will need

    • Broomstick or other handle
    • Doorway

    Broomstick

    Step 1

    Bend your right arm so your right hand is near your right ear. Hold onto the broomstick in your right hand with your palm facing you. Hang the stick behind your arm.

    Step 2

    Reach across your stomach and hold onto the pole with your left hand. Face your palm toward your right hip.

    Step 3

    Keep your right elbow bent and lift it until it is in line with your right shoulder. This may be enough of a stretch for you.

    Step 4

    Go deeper into the stretch under your shoulder blade by pulling the pole forward with your left hand. Pull until you feel a stretch under your shoulder blade.

    Step 5

    Breathe normally as you maintain the stretch for 15 to 30 seconds. Slowly release, and repeat two to four times. Complete the stretch on your left side.

    Doorway

    Step 1

    Stand in a doorway. Bend your right arm and place your forearm against the wall with your palm flat and fingertips up. Place your left hand on your left hip.

    Step 2

    Step back approximately 2 to 3 feet with your right leg. Bend your left knee slightly. Lean forward slightly from your hips. Keep both of your feet facing forward and flat on the floor.

    Step 3

    Lean forward until you feel the stretch underneath your right shoulder blade. Maintain the position for 15 to 30 seconds as you breathe normally. If you need a deeper stretch, turn to look over your left shoulder.

    Step 4

    Repeat the stretch on your left side. Perform two to four stretches on each side.

    Tip

    • Your muscles receive a deeper stretch if they are warm. For five to 10 minutes before you stretch, perform full-body movements. For example, swing your arms as you march in place or walk around the block.

    Warning

    • If you experience consistent pain in your shoulder blades, seek medical attention.

    About the Author

    Lisa M. Wolfe had her first fitness article published in 2001. She writes for various magazines such as "Cycle California," "Rocky Mountain Sports" and "American Fitness." She is the author of numerous fitness books and holds an Associate of Arts in exercise science from Oakland Community College.

    Photo Credits

    • Thinkstock Images/Comstock/Getty Images