Exercises for upper body range of motion are crucial for maintaining and enhancing mobility, preventing stiffness and promoting well being. As a healthcare professional it’s important to approach these exercises with care prioritizing patient comfort, privacy and safety throughout the process. This lesson will provide you with guidance on exercises that target parts of the body like shoulders and fingers. We will also highlight the significance of technique and patient centered care.

Preparing for Upper Body Mobility Exercises

Before starting any exercise routine it’s essential to create an respectful environment for the patient. Follow these steps to set up an exercise session:

1.1 Patient Interaction:

Knock on the door before entering and wait for permission from the patient.

Address the patient by their name when greeting them and introduce yourself while explaining your purpose, for visiting and informing them about the exercises you will be performing.

1.2 Hygiene:

Ensure privacy by closing curtains or blinds to make patients feel comfortable during their session.

Maintain hygiene standards by washing your hands to prevent spreading germs.

1.3 Confirming Identity:

Ensure the patient’s identity by verifying their identification document. This step is crucial for providing care to patients.

Step 1.4: Positioning:

Help the patient find a lying position that provides support for their head and body.

Upper Body Range of Motion Exercises:

The exercises explained below are designed to improve flexibility and mobility in areas of the body. Each exercise should be performed slowly. With caution prioritizing the patients comfort and safety at all times.

Exercise 1: Shoulder Extension:

  • Start by placing the patient’s arm down by their side. 
  • Hold their wrist with one hand while supporting their arm with the hand.
  • Gently raise their arm forward overhead. 
  • Repeat this movement three times focusing on controlled motions.

Exercise 2: Shoulder Abduction:

  • Keep the patient’s arm down by their side. 
  • Hold their wrist with one hand while supporting their arm with your hand.
  • Move their arm to the side of their body. 
  • Perform this exercise three times ensuring it remains comfortable, for the patient throughout.

Exercise 3: Shoulder Adduction:

Let’s move on to the exercise, which involves bringing the shoulder to the body. 

  • With the patient’s arm down by their side, hold onto their wrist while supporting their arm. 
  • Now cross their arms over the front of their body. 
  • We’ll repeat this movement three times making sure to maintain a controlled pace.

Exercise 4: Shoulder Rotation:

Now let’s move on to the exercise that focuses on shoulder rotation.

  • Start with the patient’s arm by their side. 
  • Place one hand on their wrist. The other hand, under their elbow for support. 
  • Bend their arm at the elbow. Position it at shoulder level. 
  • Gradually move their forearm down towards their body. 
  • Lets perform this rotation exercise three times on each side.

Exercise 5: Elbow Flexion (Bicep Curls):

Up is exercise five which targets elbow flexion or bicep curls. 

  • Hold onto their wrist. Support the elbow with your hand. 
  • Bend their arm at the elbow in an imitation of a bicep curl movement.
  • Repeat this flexion exercise three times while encouraging controlled motion.

Exercise 6: Wrist Rotation:

Moving on to exercise six that focuses on wrist rotation. 

  • Grasp onto their wrist. Guide them through rotations of the wrist in all four directions. 
  • Downwards, upwards and sideways again. 
  • Perform these rotations three times to give them a range of motion.

Exercise 7: Finger Flexion:

Lastly we have exercise seven which involves finger flexion exercises. 

  • Hold onto their wrist. Address each finger individually as you gently bend them backwards forwards and, towards the center.
  • Repeat this flexion exercise three times for each finger, promoting flexibility and comfort.

3. Wrapping Up the Session:

That completes our series of exercises! Well done! To ensure flexibility and comfort it is recommended to perform the flexion exercise three times for each finger. Here’s how to wrap up the session on a note:

1. Patient Comfort:

Kindly ask the patient if they would like to sit up and offer assistance if necessary. Also make sure they have access to the call button in case they need any help.

2. Hygiene:

Maintain hygiene by washing your hands after assisting the patient.

3. Privacy:

Ensure a sense of privacy by closing the curtains or providing a space.


These exercises are vital for preserving mobility and comfort which ultimately contribute to well being. By following these steps and techniques you can confidently support patients in enhancing their upper body mobility while prioritizing their safety, privacy and comfort throughout the exercise session.