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A Comprehensive Guide to Physical Therapy for Shoulder Impingement

November 15, 2023
A Comprehensive Guide to Physical Therapy for Shoulder Impingement

Shoulder impingement is a common physical ailment that compresses the rotator cuff tendons, causing pain and limited range of motion. It occurs because of repeated and chronic compression of the rotator cuff tendons. People who perform repeated overhead arm movements are usually at risk of developing a shoulder impingement. Additionally, if left untreated, a shoulder impingement can lead to more serious conditions. Physiotherapy can be an effective treatment option to manage pain and restore the functionality of the shoulder. In this blog, let us explore more about shoulder impingement and how physiotherapy can aid in its recovery.

Physiotherapy for shoulder impingement

Shoulder impingement treatment involves mild exercises that help develop strength and range of motion and work well for shoulder impingement. A physiotherapist who specialises in shoulder issues can be recommended by your doctor.

Your shoulder impingement physio sessions will most likely focus on the muscles in your shoulder, arm, and chest, which can assist in improving rotator cuff function. The cause of shoulder impingement is likely an injury or overuse of the shoulder from repetitive activity. If you’re an athlete or work in a sector that necessitates frequent use of your shoulder, your physiotherapist can teach you effective practices to lessen the likelihood of recurrence.

What treatments are most used for shoulder impingement syndrome?

The following procedures will be used as part of the treatment plan to reduce shoulder impingement pain, followed by an exercise and postural programme to retrain the rotator cuff and correct the imbalance.

  • Massage: Several techniques are used, and the deep-lying structures are reached by applying enough pressure through the superficial tissue. It is used to improve circulation, lessen oedema, relax muscle spasms, and encourage natural tissue repair.
  • Taping/strapping: If it is deemed necessary, taping or strapping may be used to limit abnormal motion, stop further injury, or improve the function of the injured muscles.
  • Deep friction: Deep friction is an intense massage method used as deeply as possible across the tissue fibers. Although it hurts at first, this approach has the potential to reduce the discomfort. Scar tissue can be removed, normal movement can be regained, and the wounded structure can be made ready for mobilisation.
  • Mobilisation: Mobilisation is a manual treatment in which the therapist moves the soft tissues to regain normal range of motion and reduce discomfort.
  • Ultrasonic therapy: Various soft tissue injuries and disorders are frequently treated with ultrasound therapy. It employs high-frequency sound waves to have therapeutic effects on the tissues it is intended to treat. The enhanced blood flow and metabolic activity stimulated by ultrasound therapy can accelerate tissue repair and regeneration, helping to heal damaged soft tissues such as muscles, tendons, and ligaments.

Benefits of physiotherapy for shoulder impingement

Here are the common benefits of physiotherapy for shoulder impingement:

  • Pain relief: Physiotherapy can help with pain relief by lowering inflammation, improving joint mobility, and strengthening muscles around the shoulder joint.
  • Improved range of motion: Physical therapy can assist in increasing the range of motion by stretching and strengthening the muscles surrounding the shoulder joint.
  • Shoulder Muscle Strengthening: Physical treatment can help strengthen the shoulder muscles, notably the rotator cuff muscles, which can enhance shoulder joint stability and support.
  • Improved posture: Physiotherapy can assist in improving posture, reducing stress on the shoulder joint, and preventing future internal impingement shoulder.
  • Prevention of Future Injuries: Physiotherapy can teach you proper body mechanics and how to avoid future injuries.


Physiotherapists performing shoulder impingement physiotherapy are movement experts helping you improve your quality of life through:

  • Patient education
  • Hands-on care
  • Prescribed movement

If you have been looking for a professional physiotherapist to help you with shoulder impingement, reach out to Southgate Physio. Our team of experts assesses your specific condition and helps you heal.

If you want to know more, feel free to get in touch with us by calling 0208 3686767 or emailing us at

Physiotherapy Services We Offer

Our clinic offers a wide range of treatments that are all recommended and tailored to everyone who comes and visits us. Our range of treatments complements the body and mind, helping to keep you pain and injury-free, delivering preventative measures to maintain your well-being and enhance your performance levels.

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