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Shoulder Rehab

Rehab Protocols
Shoulder Rehab
Exercise Guide sectionExercise Guide
Shoulder Rehab ProtocolsShoulder Rehab Protocols
AC Joint StabilisationAC Joint Stabilisation
Arthroscopic Anterior Stabilisation/ LatarjetArthroscopic Anterior Stabilisation/ Latarjet
Arthroscopic Posterior StabilisationArthroscopic Posterior Stabilisation
ASD/ACJ ExcisionASD/ACJ Excision
Biceps TenodesisBiceps Tenodesis
Capsular Shrinkage / Capsular PlicationCapsular Shrinkage / Capsular Plication
Deltoid Rehab ProgramDeltoid Rehab Program
Fracture Shoulder ReplacementFracture Shoulder Replacement
MUA/Capsular ReleaseMUA/Capsular Release
Pectoralis Major RepairPectoralis Major Repair
Reverse Shoulder Replacement (Delta3)Reverse Shoulder Replacement (Delta3)
Rotator Cuff RepairRotator Cuff Repair
Shoulder Fracture FixationShoulder Fracture Fixation
Shoulder ReplacementShoulder Replacement
SLAP RepairSLAP Repair
Lat Dorsi Transfer RehabLat Dorsi Transfer Rehab
Post-Op Rehab PrinciplesPost-Op Rehab Principles
Safe Zones for Shoulder RehabSafe Zones for Shoulder Rehab
Post-op ExercisesPost-op Exercises

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Rotator Cuff Repair

Rotator Cuff Repair (Arthroscopic)

This protocol is based on maintaining range of movement in the first phase and then gradually building strength in the middle to the last phase.


  • ROM Exercises
  • Maximise shoulder strength of deltoid, intact cuff muscles and scapula stabilisers.

Day 1 - 3 weeks

  • Mastersling with body belt
  • Wrist/hand/finger exercises
  • Elbow flex/ext, pro/supination
  • Shoulder girdle exercises
  • Scapula setting exercises
  • Pendular exercises
  • Passive ROM in all directions as tolerated
  • Level 1 Exercises

3-6 weeks:

  • Do not force or stretch
  • Gentle isometric exercises in neutral as pain allows
  • Wean off sling
  • Begin active assisted exercises ensuring glenohumeral movement, not scapulothoracic.
  • Level 2 Exercises

6 weeks +:

  • Progress to full active exercises in all ranges
  • Begin rotator cuff strengthening (pain free)
  • Closed chain exercise
  • Begin stretching the capsule
  • Begin proprioceptive exercises
  • Level 3-4 Exercises




4 Weeks

> 50% pre op passive ROM


6 Weeks

Active assisted ROM equal to pre op level


12 Weeks

Active ROM equal to pre op level


See Post-Operative Exercises

Return to functional activities

Driving                        6 Weeks

 Swimming                   Breaststroke:   6 weeks

                                    Freestyle:          3 months

 Golf                             3 Months

 Lifting                         3 Months (Then guided by the strength of the individual patient)

 Return to work            Sedentary job: 3 weeks  

                                    Manual job:      Guided by Surgeon

For more information please contact

The body's ability to sense movement within joints and joint position. This ability enables us to know where our limbs are in space without having to look.

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