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Shoulder and Arm Exercises: Elbow Extension/Triceps Press

This exercise stretches and strengthens your shoulders and triceps, the muscles in the back of your upper arm. Before starting this exercise, talk with your healthcare provider and read through all the directions. During the exercise, breathe normally and use smooth movements. Stop if you feel any pain. If pain persists, call your healthcare provider.

  • Grasp a ___ pound weight. Raise one arm overhead. Hold that arm close to your ear. Bend your elbow and lower the weight behind your head, as far as you can, being careful not to hit your head. Support your arm by placing your opposite hand on your upper arm. Ask your physical therapist or healthcare provider how much weight to use. 

  • Slowly straighten your elbow, extending your arm upward. Return to starting position. Hold for 2 seconds.

  • Repeat ____ times with each arm. Do ____ sets ____ times a day.

Man standing doing triceps press exercise.


Keep your head still and neck straight. Keep your arm close to your ear. Keep your belly (abdominal) muscles tight. Don’t arch your back.

Online Medical Reviewer: Raymond Turley Jr PA-C
Online Medical Reviewer: Stacey Wojcik MBA BSN RN
Online Medical Reviewer: Thomas N Joseph MD
Date Last Reviewed: 9/1/2022
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