Passive Range of Motion: Shoulder flexion

Original Editor - Kapil Narale

Top Contributors - Kapil Narale  

Introduction[edit | edit source]

Shoulder flexion can be accomplished in one of two ways, through glenohumeral joint flexion, or through glenohumeral joint, scapular, and clavicular motion. [1]

Patient Starting Position[edit | edit source]

The patient can be in a supine position with their knees up, or in a sitting position. In either position, their arm would be at the side, with the palm facing inwards, with the forearm in mid-position. [1]

Stabilization[edit | edit source]

The patient's shoulder is stabilized by the weight of their trunk, when supine.

If assessing shoulder flexion through glenohumeral, scapular, and clavicular movement, the therapist stabilizes their thorax before conducting the passive movement.

Alternatively, the therapist can place one hand on the medial border of the scapula, if strictly assessing glenohumeral movement.

Therapist's Distal Hand Placement[edit | edit source]

The therapist grasps the distal humerus, close to the elbow.

End Position[edit | edit source]

The therapist moves the humerus in an anterior and upward direction, to the limit of shoulder flexion.

The elbow is left in extension, if possible, to minimize any stretching of the 2-joint triceps muscle, thus possibly affecting the ROM of shoulder flexion.

End Feel[edit | edit source]


References[edit | edit source]

  1. 1.0 1.1 Clarkson Hazel M. Musculoskeletal Assessment - Joint Motion and Muscle Testing. 3rd Edition. Philadelphia. Lippincott Williams & Wilkins. 2013.