Easy Exercises & Self Massage to Relieve Back Pain Between Shoulder Blades

Pains in between shoulder blades and the upper back is one of the most common conditions affecting many people today. Some of the leading causes for this include the lifestyles we lead (tapping away on smartphones, eating and driving positions, sitting with chest collapse or head forward, etc.).Other factors that can contribute to this include spending extended periods of time swimming, cycling, and sitting with rounded shoulders for too long (while working on a computer, for example). This puts lots of stress on the shoulders and arms causing chronic pains over time.

Shoulder Blade Pain Exercises and Stretches

Taking on exercises meant for the shoulder, and upper back can however help manage and prevent such pains. Shoulder blade exercises and stretches work by improving muscle flexibility as well as promote increased blood flow into the same. It is however advisable to take it slow at first to avoid making the condition worse. You could start off with the easiest and simple exercises, then move to the difficult ones for improved performance and relief too. Some of the most recommended exercises and stretches for shoulder blade pains are discussed below.

1. Pectorals stretch exercises: Using the doorway as your guide, stand upright with both hands on the wall or above your head. Next, try to lean forward slowly until you can feel the front of your shoulders stretch. Hold the position for at least fifteen seconds, then back to the original position. Repeat this 3 more times.

2. Thoracic stretch: Sit flat on a mat with legs extended to the front. Place your hands on our mid-thighs, then try to reach your belly button with your head. Count up to 10, then repeat the procedure 2 or 3 times more.

3. Scapular Squeeze: While in a sitting position, place your right arm on the left shoulder, and left arm on the right shoulder. Squeeze the shoulders tightly together for about 5 seconds. Repeat this as many times as you can.

4. Yoga cat/cow: Kneel on all fours then exhale while gently arching your spine. Inhale deeply and hold the breath tightly in for about 30 seconds. This should force you to tighten inner core muscles to keep the air in. Exhale slowly, then repeat this 2 or 3 more times.

5. Lying knee twist: With your legs extended out, lie on your back, then bend the right knee to cross over to the left. Hold the position for a few seconds, then repeat the process with the left knee.

While some of these exercises may seem simple, they engage your inner muscles especially muscles under the shoulders. This allows more blood to move into those muscles improving flexibility. As more blood gushes into these muscles, more nutrients and oxygen is availed, hence reduced inflammation. You however need some patience with these exercises to see positive results.

Video: Shoulder Blades Pain Exercises 


Muscle imbalances and inflammation in the same are some of the leading causes of upper back pains and painful shoulder blades. Striving to maintain the right posture, and taking on stretching, strengthening muscles can help manage this condition. Be sure to see a physician should these pains persist.

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