The BEST Shoulder Stretch : Unlock Mobility with the Pectoral Stretch on a Foam Roll

Shoulder stretch for shoulder pain

What is the best shoulder stretch to do? In our fast-paced lives, it’s easy to neglect the importance of stretching and maintaining proper mobility. Many of us spend long hours sitting at desks, hunching over our phones, or engaging in repetitive motions that can lead to tightness and imbalances in our bodies. One area that often suffers from these habits is the shoulder complex. To combat this issue and promote healthy shoulder mobility, it is great to do some daily stretching. But what stretch should we do? There are many different shoulder stretches you could do. There are many blog posts around with examples of great shoulder stretches.

 What is the best shoulder stretch? We present to you the best shoulder stretch: the pectoral stretch on a foam roll. At Change Sports Physical Therapy Institute, we believe that if you could only do one stretch for your shoulder, this exercise would be it. Let’s dive into the benefits and proper technique of this game-changing stretch.

Understanding the best shoulder stretch

The pectoral muscles, or pecs, are a group of muscles located in the chest region. They play a vital role in the movement and stability of the shoulder joint. However, due to our modern lifestyle, these muscles often become tight and shortened, leading to rounded shoulders and limited mobility. This tightness can cause discomfort, pain, and even increase the risk of shoulder injuries. In fact, almost every patient coming in to our clinic with shoulder pain (and neck pain), has limited mobility in this area. It is an area that is “common” to be tight, but it is not “normal”. Tightness here causes a lot of dysfunctions. 

The Power of the best shoulder stretch on a Foam Roll

The pectoral stretch on a foam roll is a highly effective exercise that targets the tightness in your chest muscles, helping to alleviate shoulder tightness and improve overall shoulder mobility. 


Here’s why this stretch should be a staple in your routine:

  • Increased Range of Motion: By stretching the pec muscles, you can significantly enhance your shoulder joint’s range of motion. This is especially beneficial for activities that involve reaching, lifting, and throwing, allowing you to move more freely and with less strain.
  • Improved Posture: Tight pecs contribute to poor posture, which can lead to a host of musculoskeletal issues. By incorporating the pectoral stretch into your routine, you can counteract the effects of rounded shoulders and promote an upright, aligned posture.
  • Enhanced Sports Performance: Whether you’re an athlete or a fitness enthusiast, optimal shoulder mobility is crucial for achieving peak performance. Looser pec muscles obtained through the pectoral stretch can help improve your throwing, serving, or swinging mechanics, giving you a competitive edge.

Performing the Pectoral Stretch on a Foam Roll

Follow these step-by-step instructions to perform the pectoral stretch on a foam roll correctly: 

You can access a video of this exercise by going to and inputting the access code: 29C6N3M2


If you have had surgery, a recent injury or some other issues, you should consult with us or your physician directly before attempting this stretch. 


You will need a full 36 inch length foam roll for this exercise. These are quickly available on Amazon.


  • Positioning: Start by placing a foam roll horizontally on the ground. Sit in front of the roll, with your knees bent and feet flat on the floor.
  • Lie back: Gently lean backward, allowing your upper back to rest on the foam roll. Your head, neck, and tailbone should be in contact with the foam roll. Keep your knees bent to avoid excess strain on your low back.
  • Arm placement: Extend your arms to the sides, perpendicular to your body, with your elbows straight and palms facing up. Have your hands resting on the floor.
  • Relax and breathe: Take slow, deep breaths, allowing your chest and shoulders to relax into the stretch. You should feel a gentle opening across your chest, but never any sharp pain or discomfort.
  • Duration: Hold the stretch for 2-3 minutes.


Incorporating the pectoral stretch on a foam roll into your daily routine can yield remarkable benefits for your shoulder health and overall well-being. By dedicating a few minutes each day to this exercise, you can improve your posture, increase your range of motion, and enhance your athletic performance.

At Change Sports Physical Therapy Institute, we are committed to providing you with the tools and knowledge necessary to take charge of your health. If you are looking for expert help with your shoulder pain, we would love to help you along your journey. 

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