Scapular exercise: Retraction

Picture of the retraction scapular exercise

For this exercise, you will need elastic exercise material, such as surgical tubing or Thera-band.

  • Put the band around a solid object, such as a bedpost, at about waist level. Each hand should hold an end of the band.
  • With your elbows at your sides and bent to 90 degrees, pull the band back to move your shoulder blades toward each other. Return to the starting position.
  • Repeat 8 to 12 times.
  • If you have good range of motion in your shoulders, try this exercise with your arms lifted out to the sides, with your elbows at a 90-degree angle. Raise the elastic band up to about shoulder level. Pull the band back to move your shoulder blades toward each other. Return to the starting position.

Last Updated: January 7, 2010

Author: Shannon Erstad, MBA/MPH

Medical Review: William M. Green, MD - Emergency Medicine & Patrick J. McMahon, MD - Orthopedics

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