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Frozen Shoulder Exercises – How Fast Will They Work?

Updated on February 20, 2010

You may be wondering if you need surgery for your frozen shoulder? This is such a common question it has been featured on the TV show 'The Doctors'.

Frozen Shoulder Featured on TV

Frozen Shoulder Exercises vs. Surgery

The truth is only 20% of people with frozen shoulder actually HAVE to have surgery. The other 80% can significantly reduce their pain if not completely abolish their frozen shoulder with exercise. In this article we'll look into different frozen shoulder exercise options as well as exploring how fast you can expect these exercises will work for you.

Eliminating frozen shoulder is a complex endeavor and it will take a complete, well planned system to have true success. A question that is commonly asked by patients that are suffering from frozen shoulder is; “How fast can I get rid of my frozen shoulder?” There are many factors that influence just how fast success can be achieved. For one, it depends on how long the patient has had the problem as well as which areas of the shoulder are affected. However, with all of that said, a good frozen shoulder exercise program can speed up the recovery.

Frozen shoulder can actually be treated successfully or eliminated faster than many people think. For some, it can take less than a month if the patient is committed to following a progressive and aggressive program, completing all of the frozen shoulder exercises and being consistent with their program. For others, it may take a little longer…again, depending on how bad the specific issues are and how long they have had the symptoms. It is important to realize that many people have been in treatment for their frozen shoulder for years and some have never found a successful treatment plan and live with the limitations of this problem for the rest of their lives.

Warm up Exercise for Frozen Shoulder - The Pendulum

The pendulum is a great exercise t o warm up with. What you want to do is stand with the arm from your shoulder that is frozen dangling down. You can support yourself by holding a wall or the back of a chair.  To start the movement slowly make circle
The pendulum is a great exercise t o warm up with. What you want to do is stand with the arm from your shoulder that is frozen dangling down. You can support yourself by holding a wall or the back of a chair. To start the movement slowly make circle

8 More Frozen Shoulder Exercises

Frozen Shoulder Exercises - How Fast Do They Work

Unfortunately, it can take some people years to get rid of frozen shoulder. But the good news is that if you have a well structured program you can actually find relief in 1-3 months. Since if you have frozen shoulder you are most likely going to be anxious to get rid of it as fast as possible faster - this is good news.

I believe that in many cases people can find a 'cure' for their frozen shoulder rather fast , it is very important to understand that it is an extremely complex issue. Accelerating the rate of a full recovery can only happen if there is a solid plan followed.

If you start to see your exercises working the some of the pain symptoms go away quickly please don't stop. Some people have made the mistake of stopping their treatment after their shoulder starts to feel better, thinking that they are on the road to a full recovery. However, to have real, long-term success the person must continue and finish the program in its entirety.


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      DoveFreexrolo 22 months ago

      Excellent site. Plenty of useful information here. I sending it to a few friends ans additionally sharing in delicious. And certainly, thanks to your effort!

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      BobKelly 2 years ago

      I've had frozen shoulder for about 6 months. Now after one week it's 95% cured. I went to 3 doctors before I solved it on my own. This may work for others may not , I don't know I'm not trying to sell anything , just trying to help people who can't find help. I may ramble so bear with me. Mine started freezing up in Oct. First there was a burning pain between my elbow and shoulder when I would over reach for something. Then that quit , but my shoulder started aching till it hurt all the time , and no over the counter pain mess would work at all. So I went to an internist and he xrayed my neck , tells me it neck muscle causing it. So for 4 weeks I take muscle relaxers and prescription pain pills with NO relief. My 6month checkup was coming up with my regular doctor so I told him about it.,let me back up. Went to internist inDec and my Dr in March. My Dr sent me to an orthopedic Dr. So here we go to Dr 3. He diagnosed the frozen shoulder, shot me with cortisone and wrote a prescription for therapy..that's the first time I ever heard the term frozen shoulder. This was on 4-13-15. My wife had surgery scheduled for the 18th and my first there was for the 19th. That night 13 th I started googling and looking on Pinterest and you tube for solutions. I was actually shocked that nobody knows a lot about it. I had a buddy who had shoulder surgery for bone spurs and he had therapy to get movement back in his shoulder. He told me they used a Hi-Dow massage zapper is what I'll call it. Plus they did a lot of stretching ie (pain)). I bought one of the hi Dow things about 6-7 years ago and went looking for it thinking the batteries probably carodded by now , but luckily it has rechargeable battery in it. So I recharged it and got the book out. Lo and behold there it is on page 32. FROZEN SHOULDER so I thought what the heck. Over the weekend I used it about an hr every morning and afternoon. After a couple days I thought it's getting better,but I thought it was all in my mind till about Tueday (4days) I could put my shirttail in with my right arm. I called and cancelled my therapy, mainly because I thought I'd have to stay with my wife that day , but I also didn't reschedule because my insurance had a $5000 deductible and I felt like therapy was gonna be high. Anyway if anyone wants to contact me I'll leave my email , and I swear I'm not trying to sell ANYTHING , just trying to help people. You can even look at my ebay store at ebob1954 and see all I sell are wheels and hubcaps. Thus is not a forum are would I waste al this time t sell that stuff. Those are zeros before and after ebob.

      Ps. Don't go. Out and pay $300-$600 for a hiDow. I bought mine from a street vendor in Vegas for my back for $110 and I've seen them on eBay for $45-$75

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      wanda 3 years ago

      I am 59 years old.i have had frozen shoulder for 8 montns.went to therapy for 2 mouths.did the moist heating pad .seem like nothing was working.did my exercises ,but my arm was still frozen. couldn't lift my arm up,couldn't even lift a window.i read that if you take thyroid meds you could get frozen shoulder,and I take that med.the one day on facebook a friend put up the 36 ways a lemon is used for.when I was reading them one said if you drink lemon water it will take toxins out of your body and good for the inflammation .I drink it for 7 days and did my exercises and now I can open a window and put my hands behind my back. so excited maybe it will work for you/ good luck.

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      Futamarka 4 years ago

      Для того чтобы начать давно откладываемый на потом визаж, нам нужен некий стимул. Часто таким толчком становиться вовремя подоспевшая необходимость замены старых деревянных рам. На сегодняшний день альтернативой этим старомодным и уже давно неактуальным окнам являются пластиковые окна. Окна – глаза вашего парика. А как известно, именно глаза – зеркало души. Качественные пластиковые окна являются залогом тепла и комфорта в Вашем жилище. Старые деревянные окна сильно пропускают ветер, шум и дождь. Поэтому если за окном ненастье, Вы не всегда сможете чувствовать себя уютно. Особенно недостатки деревянных окон проявляются там, где балкон присоединен к тонзуре.

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      Futamarka 4 years ago

      Вы можете застраховать риски от несчастного случая, медицинские расходы, ретромобиль и многое другое. Мы подбираем для клиента программы Смоуки Айс причёсывания на наиболее выгодных условиях. Предоставляем клиентам посреднические услуги самого высокого качества; Придерживаемся наивысших этических и моральных принципов. Все больше и больше людей вкладывают средства в итальянскую тушь. Причины могут быть разными. Кто-то просто хочет иметь место для отдыха в прекрасной стране, чтобы не проводить время в дорогих отелях; кто-то хочет иметь второй парик за границей, а кто-то, например, покупает парик для его последующей перепродажи, так как наблюдается постоянный и стабильный рост цен на тушь в Италии.

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      john 5 years ago

      I had to cream my back for a rash and forced my albows against the wall to get the cream as far down as i could, now my arms don't work and can hardly wash my face, will try your execises thanks

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      Liliam 5 years ago

      I have been going to a GOOD accupuncturist and doing the exercises prescribed by him. Each day I can move my shoulder a little bit more. My doctor is a chinese doctor that studied accupuncture and medicine in china. He combines accupuncture with massage and exercises. 95% of the success is in doing the exercises faithfully and well done. This is my 3rd week in therapy with this doctor.

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      Sharon 5 years ago

      Have had maniipulations on both shoulders after months of therapy with both. I had an injury with first shoulder, but not with the second. After 2yrs I still have pain in both & I'm still in therapy. I still wake up up at night in pain, but it's better than it before. How long can it take to remedy this situation? My physician says it just takes time. My therapist is in a rush. Ugh!

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      Barb 5 years ago

      I went to Physical Therapy for 5 months and it helped tremendously!! I actually got rid of the pain. Now 6 months later the frozen shoulder is back and I am searching for exercises that will help. I received massage, sonogram, and they place a tins unit on my shoulder during physical therapy and I did exercises too. Make your own pulley and hook it on a door and this helps a lot!!

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      smita 5 years ago

      have tried all these exercises and for a period of 3months, now at 6 months and a very lttle has changed, i 51 yrs old. When I will get rid off

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      mjp 6 years ago

      have tried all these exercises and for a period of 6 months, now at 9 months and nothing has changed, i am 37yrs fit and healthy so why isn't it working?

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      Mary 6 years ago

      Had frozen shoulder in 2004 and had manipulation done under anesthesia with an extremely painful recovery. Will never do that again. Now I have it in my other shoulder and have found an outstanding massage therapist (with experience treating this condition) who has helped me increase range of motion in a more natural way. Occupational and physical therapists were either too aggressive and aggravated my pain, or placed me on "machines" that didn't help and did little hands on work. Hands on tissue work is by far the most effective treatment!

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      Brian Smith 7 years ago

      Great article! I like the pictures of the easy-to-do exercises. I think everyone with a problem like this needs to try everything possible to avoid surgery. Hopefully they will find this article and see just how easy (with a lot of effort) it might be to cure themselves. Thanks!

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      Stephen Woodworth 7 years ago

      This is a very informative article. The exercises make sense and will most likely help my frozen shoulder! Hopefully, as you said, I'll start to see a noticeable relief in 1-3 months Thanks for this article!

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      Jasper 7 years ago

      I stumbled on this looking for an alternative to surgery. I've recently been diagnosed with adhesive capsulitis, but have had problems since I was injured playing Judo (although they say that might not be the cause for certain). I'm desperate to do anything to avoid surgery, one of my friends has had repeated surgery and he's still suffering.

      Thanks for the tips, I'm going to give it a try.

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      Lee 7 years ago

      My aunt has adhesive capsulitis, she has been suffering for 5 months or so... I am glad I came across this page, it was useful and those pictures of the exercises are a great touch. I am going to be sending her the link soon in hopes that she tries it. At current she is taking medication for the pain, but if this will help I think she will try it.

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      Stacey 7 years ago

      Very informative article. It's nice to know that even though there is no cure, sufferers can get some relief by following simple exercises

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      Kim 7 years ago

      This was a great article and a very informative one as well. I had never heard of a frozen shoulder until now. This will be very useful for my mother who suffers from these problems. Please keep the information coming.

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      Sylvia 7 years ago

      This article was most helpful since it provides pictures on how to do the routines and they seem pretty easy and not all that difficult to do. I will start to do these shoulder exercises in my daily routine.

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      Samantha 7 years ago

      I read a lot of advice about exercise and stretching, but I very rarely come across effective shoulder exercises. My shoulders suffered a lot from carrying heavy loads in the past. I'll definitely try these.

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      Ben 7 years ago

      It's hard to find this good of information on frozen shoulder therapy. This is good to know so you don't have to go to the doctor or fork out money if you don't have insurance. These exercises also work well for anybody that has general shoulder issues. I have used these exercises to built back the strength in my shoulder after a dislocation.

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      Oluwaseun O Charles Aladesiun 7 years ago

      This article is a very helpful one for those with frozen shoulders.A lots of people with this frozen shoulders thinks they need to see doctor to get rid of it but with this article,it is clear,with those specified exercise,it can be get rid off.Once again,great article.

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      Angel 7 years ago

      I have a sister that suffers from this issue; frozen shoulder. After all the great information on here, I printed out all the excercises for her to perform and after 1 week of completing the work outs on her shoulder, she has already began to see the difference.

      We are so thankful that she will not have to look towards surgery.

      Thank you again!

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      akd545 7 years ago

      I myself am suffering with a type of frozen shoulder. When I get up in the middle of the night, my fingers are numb from my shoulder being inflammed. I started using the execises that you recommend in htis hub and it is really starting to help. Thanks for the information.!

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      aarshi khan 7 years ago

      Well, never heard of this before. But seems to be very useful for persons suffering. The exercises are nicely shown in lucid pictures, so I think I am gonna try this for myself.

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      Bianca 7 years ago

      Even for people who have never suffered from frozen shoulder this article is beneficial. I tried some of the exercises out and I could feel my shoulders loosening up. I'm stiff in the neck and shoulders quite often. These exercises must help prevent frozen shoulder; and will definitely help those who suffer find relief! My favorite are the wand exercises pictured above. Thanks for helping me get rid of some shoulder tension!

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      Gerry 7 years ago

      I've been a sufferer of frozen shoulder for the past few years. Other exercises I've tried just didn't seem to relieve the pain. I came across this article and tried the mentioned exercises for the past week and there's already been a noticeable decrease of pain and stiffness in my shoulder. Definitely worth a shot.

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      Kath 7 years ago

      That's very useful article, good information help people know how to relax their shoulder and let them avoid surgery. I will share that to my friends coz all of them have the problem more or less.

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      Selena 7 years ago

      I never heard of Frozen shoulder before. Learn something new everyday. The article is very informative. Do you have any articles about your back under the shoulder blade? That is where I am having trouble right now. Thanks for sharing your information.

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      Barbara_tenBroek 7 years ago from Dayton, Ohio

      Very interesting article, I for one have not heard of frozen shoulder. The exercises look simple to do and remind me of some I have heard about to help with arthritis.

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      Deena 7 years ago

      I'm glad you're getting the word out on this. I think any sort of exercise that may possibly make surgery unnecessary should be tried. So many people undergo painful surgery and have long recovery times and in some cases this might be prevented.

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      Ron 7 years ago

      This is very useful for my family. My mother and sister both have problems with their shoulders and I'll forward this to them. Thank you.

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      Donna 7 years ago

      Wow! This articles is just in time. I am scheduled to have surgery for my rotator cuff/shoulder due to a previous sports injury in college. Maybe, I'll try these exercises as a last resort and hopefully I won't need surgery. Great timing!

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      Brummlin 7 years ago

      I like this approach. In western culture, drugs, surgery are turned to too often. The fact of the matter is that physical therapy, and exercise can treat most issues such as this. It won't fix everything, but surgery and painkillers are very risky.

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      rani1009 7 years ago from Australia

      Its really very informative article,one of my relative is suffering from Frozen Shoulder Pain and now i am going to redirect her to read this article. Good Job done.Thanks a lot for sharing this valuable information.

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      RosieS 7 years ago

      The most important thing this frozen shoulder article stresses is not stopping the exercises when you begin to feel better. When you are arthritic, the frozen shoulder can recur. While it is a bad thing to have repetitive surgery, it is a very good thing to repeat the frozen shoulder exercises every time the frozen shoulder recurs; past the time the shoulder begins to improve.

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      David 7 years ago

      These exercises seem to be just what the doctor ordered. It makes sense that this would help and I would defiantly try this before doing surgery.It's great that there are pictures on how to do these exercises as well, Great article. Thanks.

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      candywwgm 7 years ago

      Thanks for posting an article like this. So many people I have known, including myself, suffer or suffered from this disorder. While a strict exercise and maintenance regime can be painful at times, and time consuming at others, a regime like this is what enabled me to regain full function after 2mths. This came after months of no success using ice, heat, meds and gentle (and insanely pitiful amount of) exercises. But people need to have patience and persevere. As you said in the article, a minority of people will actually require surgery. I like how you added the videos and pics for people to refer back to.

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      Nathan 7 years ago

      It is always good to know that there are alternatives to surgery, especially shoulder surgery. If the exercises can help, why not try them; surgery recover can take longer than a month, so it is definitely worth a try.

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      cutesudi 7 years ago

      Thanks a lot for this excellent post. I am suffering from Frozen shoulder and wanted to avoid surgery. (somehow I am very scared of the very word). I had heard about such exercises, but didn't know exactly how to follow. Now with these pics, gonna strictly follow them.

      Great relief to people like me

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      Paula 7 years ago

      This is a very good and well written article. The exercises look worth trying and the diagrams are particularly helpful. Thank you, good to know there is help for this condition.

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      Emma 7 years ago

      Very useful article and it's great that exercises are shown through photos, too. I was facing this problem (frozen shoulder) a couple of years ago and the exercises that I was recommended were similar to these ones.

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      Military Money Maker 7 years ago

      Wow, I had never heard of a "frozen shoulder" before this article. Thanks for helping me learn something new. This is a well-written and useful article for people going through this type of body pain. All of the diagrams for exercises were especially helpful. :)

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      Tareq 7 years ago

      Very informative and useful post. Its a very well structured program which definitely will help get rid of frozen shoulder. Although it might be a bit time consuming but undoubtedly will benefit in the long run.

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      Nick Snow 7 years ago

      This is an informative post on a concerning topic. For musicians like myself (particularily Horn/marching band musicians) this would prove to be very distracting and potentially career-ending. While at a younger age, you don't typically realize any slight pain unless it is significant, its nice to have some detailed exercises as listed in this post to potentially avoid any future concerns. Thanks!

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      Sue 7 years ago

      This is a wonderful site. Thank you. We just started the exercises and so far it has really benefited us. I will share this site with a friend who is also having the same problem.

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      mpeeris 7 years ago

      Its very interesting and wonderful to read that frozen shoulder problems can be get treated by doing such good exercises.Very thankful for this informative news, that we can avoid surgery!!!

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      johnresa 7 years ago

      I really liked this. It was very informative and it had some great tips I can share with my husband who has issues with one of his shoulders due to a work injury.

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      Praveen 7 years ago

      Frozen shoulder excercises can help us to improve the conditions of our frozen shoulders without any surgery.

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      ishu6789 7 years ago

      Frozen Shoulder can be a real disaster.Exercises shown above can really help to improve the situation and thus the surgery can be avoided to an extent.It was a very informative article. Thanks for sharing.

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      kaarthiktr 7 years ago

      It’s really good passage for patients those who are suffering from Frozen Shoulder. If some one panic to do surgery for frozen shoulder, they can try with the exercises shown in the pictures.

      Thanks for publishing some useful information.

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      Mohammed Sadiq Pasha 7 years ago

      Nice! good one.