Shoulder and elbow range of motion for the performance of activities of daily living: A systematic review

OnderzoeksoutputAcademicpeer review

22 Citaten (Scopus)
358 Downloads (Pure)


The loss of range of motion (ROM) in the upper extremities can interfere with activities of daily living (ADL) and, therefore, many interventions focus on improving impaired ROM. The question, however, is what joint angles are needed to naturally perform ADL. The present review aimed to compile and synthesize data from literature on shoulder and elbow angles that unimpaired participants used when performing ADL tasks. A search was conducted in PubMed, Cochrane, Scopus, CINAHL, and PEDro. Studies were eligible when shoulder (flexion, extension, abduction, adduction) and/or elbow (flexion, extension) angles were measured in unimpaired participants who were naturally performing ADL tasks, and angles were provided per task. Thirty-six studies involving a total of 66 ADL tasks were included. Results demonstrated that unimpaired participants used up to full elbow flexion (150 degrees) in personal care, eating, and drinking tasks. For shoulder flexion and abduction approximately 130 degrees was necessary. Specific ADL tasks were measured often, however, almost never for tasks such as dressing. The synthesized information can be used to interpret impairments on the individual level and to establish rehabilitation goals in terms of function and prevention of secondary conditions due to excessive use of compensatory movements.

Originele taal-2English
Pagina's (van-tot)505-528
Aantal pagina's24
TijdschriftPhysiotherapy Theory & Practice
Nummer van het tijdschrift7
Vroegere onlinedatum29-jan-2018
StatusPublished - 2018

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