Simple stretching exercises for ELDERLY (Part 2)

Stretching to prevent or ease frozen shoulder and heel pain

Professional consultant/Hsu Chih-Chung, Physical Therapist Li-Kong Ortho Clinic, New Taipei City

Frequently asked question 2 : Frozen shoulder

People over 50 years of age are most susceptible to frozen shoulder with the likely causes overuse use of previous injury; of course, it sometimes occurs for an unknown reason.

The shoulder is a round joint and can move through 360 degrees in normal circumstances however, sufferers of frozen shoulder have the range of movement restricted by pain. The pain that can so great that women can’t undo the buttons at the back of their underwear or even brush their hair. If people who sleep on their side put pressure on the injured shoulder, when they get up they will feel numbness and pain, and they have a dull ache in their shoulder on cold and wet days.

Inner rotation stretch

Inner rotation stretch

Take hold of the ends of a towel or item of clothing with each hand, with left elbow bent, palm behind the head and right hand straight, with the towel in line with the spine; then, use the power of the left hand to pull the towel up, bringing the right hand up also; maintain the position for 30-60 seconds; once on each side is a set, repeat 5-10 times.

Note: People who suffer from serious frozen shoulder may not be able to lift up their arm; of this is case do one sided stretches, with the hand that has strength moving the injured side hand.

Outer rotation stretch

Bend the injured side arm with forearm facing outwards (In the demonstration pictures below the left hand stretch is shown,) clench the fist and place it against a pillar, then take a step forward with the right foot and bend the knee, but don’t let the knee go beyond the toe tips; use the power of the body moving forward to stretch the left shoulder outwards until you feel a slight ache; stay in position for 30-60 seconds and repeat 5-10 times.

We mentioned in the article ‘Which muscle groups do we use when we play badminton’ (part 2) that we use the shoulder joint muscles every time we play a shot so it is very necessary for a keen badminton player to learn shoulder stretching exercises to ease pressure on the shoulder and promote blood flow.

Outer rotation stretch


Frequently asked question 3 : Heel pain (plantar fasciitis)

Heel pain, also known as plantar fasciitis, is more likely to strike the overweight or people who stand a lot than other people. The circular fat pad on the bottom of the heel is responsible for absorbing reaction force when we walk or step on the ground, however, the detioriation caused by being overweight and aging causes the fat pad to lose elasticity and gradually flatten. Sufferers can’t walk far and will feel a sharp pain like an electric shock when their foot touches the floor when they step down from the bed in the morning.

As well as losing weight and soaking the feet to ease the symptoms, a hot pad can be applied to improve blood circulation and thus repair damaged capillaries. Apply for 15-20 minutes a time for around two months. Also, Ankle joint dorsiflexion stretching can ease pain and improve blood flow.

Ankle joint dorsiflexion stretch

Ankle joint dorsiflexion stretch

Lift up the right ankle and place it on the leg leg; take hold of the toes in the right hand and lightly pull up, maintaining the position for 30-60 seconds. Once on each side is a set, do 5-10 sets. When stretch doesn’t turn the ankle inwards towards the lower plantar flexion as this will reduce the effect of stretching.

(The above content represents the author’s views alone and not those of this company)
( Edit by VICTOR Badminton )


Hsu Chih-Chung
* School of Physical Therapy Chung Shan Medical University - Bachelor
* School of Graduate Institute of Physical Therapy, College of
Medicine, National Taiwan University - Master & PhD student
* The 21st Summer Deaflympics, Taipei, 2009 - Physical Therapist
of Chinese Taipei
* 2009-now Chinese Taipei Korfball Team - Physical Therapist
* 2010-2012 Jen-Teh Junior College Medicine, Nursing and Management - Instructor
* The 2013 World Games -- Physical Therapist of Chinese Taipei
* Li-Kong Ortho clinic - Physical Therapist