Is Stretching Good for Torn Rotator Cuff?

What are the signs that you have a tear, tendinitis or injury in your rotator cuff and shoulder?

What is the rotator cuff? According to the Mayo Clinic:

"The rotator cuff is a group of muscles and tendons that surround the shoulder joint, keeping the head of the upper arm bone firmly within the shallow socket of the shoulder. A rotator cuff injury can cause a dull ache in the shoulder that worsens at night. 

Rotator cuff injuries are common and increase with age. These injuries may occur earlier in people who have jobs that require repeatedly performing overhead motions, such as painters and carpenters."


Common Symptoms associated with a torn rotator cuff or pain in the rotator cuff:

  • A dull ache deep in the shoulder
  • Disturbed sleep
  • Difficulty combing your hair or reaching behind your back
  • Arm weakness


Who is at risk of rotator cuff injury: 

  • Age. The risk of a rotator cuff injury increases with age. Rotator cuff tears are most common in people older than 60.
  • Some occupations. Jobs that require repetitive overhead arm motions, such as carpentry or house painting, can damage the rotator cuff over time.
  • Certain sports. Some types of rotator cuff injuries are more common in people who participate in sports like baseball, tennis and weight-lifting.
  • Family history. There may be a genetic component involved with rotator cuff injuries as they appear to occur more commonly in certain families.

What muscles have the biggest impact on rotator cuff pain relief?

All of the muscles surrounding the shoulder joint are impacting the rotator cuff, however we find that for rotator cuff pain relief stretches there are 2 primary muscle groups to focus on:

Stretches and exercises for torn rotator cuff: 

When we have pain or injury or tear in our body, our tendency is to want to protect it. This is a normal and good instinct. At Bendable Body we recommend staying away from an injury and letting in heal and instead stretching the accumulated dense fascia in surrounding or associated muscle groups so that you can take pressure off of the injured area by getting those muscles to work better. So when it comes to rotator cuff stretches and how to do them or rotator cuff tendinitis stretching or doing a rotator cuff interval stretch - we would encourage you to avoid directly stretching or strengthening into the rotator cuff itself - or the shoulder joint in general for that matter. 

Instead remove some of the unhealthy fascia in the muscles on the upper back and chest and see how that not only creates space in the shoulder joint, allows you to sleep without pain, and lift your arm up without pain... but it also gives the rotator cuff time and pressure relief to heal. 

Watch this video and learn stretches to help avoid a torn rotator cuff (or help heal where there already is a tear):

6 thoughts on “Is Stretching Good for Torn Rotator Cuff?”

  1. How can I view the rotator cuff video. I have torn o e of the rotator cuff tendons and am concert that I will do further damage as I do some of the fascia releases.

    1. Were you able to view the video? It should play fine. You joints and injuries are totally protected when you stretch correctly with resistance because the impact remains in the fascia and out of or away from the injured area. Stretching will heal you, not damage you further.

  2. Fran Nottleson

    Thanks for addressing the rotator cuff. Re the first stretch…if the right hand is on the wall do we put weight on the left leg as we move to the left and turn ?…

  3. i have slowly recovered from a painful left shoulder issue and it still feels ‘weak’. I could feel an improvement just doing a few repetitions of these esp the lung meridian stretch! Thanks!

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