Modified Back Scratch Fitness Test

Note: Ensure you are well before you attempt this fitness test. If you feel any discomfort, cease the activity immediately and get medical attention. Read and understand the Safety & Indemnity form before you proceed further. Remember, your health is a priority!


Our shoulders allow us to move our arms and hands in different directions. To move well without pain, our muscles and ligaments around the shoulder have to work together. Regular stretching and strengthening help us to perform our daily activities without pain and decrease our risk of injuries.

Examples of using our arms and shoulders are:

  • Reaching for something high up the cupboard.
  • Hanging your clothes out to dry.
  • Putting on your clothes.
  • Carrying grocery bags/sling bags
  • Racquet Sports


Purpose: Assess shoulder flexibility and range of motion

Items Needed: Ruler or measuring tape and a partner to do the measurement.

How to do the test?

  1. Raise your right elbow towards the right ear and reach down the back as far as possible.
  2. Move left elbow towards the middle of the back while reaching left hand up and far as possible towards the right hand.
  3. Hold this position for two seconds while partner measures the gap or overlap from the middle finger achieved to the nearest centimetres.
  4. Repeat the same procedure for the opposite side.
  5. If both finger tips touch after the furthest reach possible, the score is zero.

Take the test and see how you fare! Fill up the form below to get your results.



Tips from Active Health Coach

Incorporate these exercises in your daily routine to improve your shoulder mobility and flexibility.

Towel Stretch: 3 sets of 30 seconds

You will require a long towel for the exercise.

  1. Take a long towel and place it over your right shoulder.
  2. Using your right hand grab the towel at your shoulder blade level.
  3. Using your left hand to grab the towel at your lower back level.
  4. With your hand at the top, pull the towel straight up, until your back hand reaches your shoulder blade.
  5. Return to start position and do another 4 more times.
  6. Repeat for the opposite side and do 5 times.

Towel stretch


Forward stretch with finger interlocked : 3 sets of 30 seconds

Perform the movement while standing.

  1. Interlace your fingers out right in front of you at about shoulder level.
  2. Turn your palms outwards as you reach forward.
  3. Hold for 8 - 10 seconds, then repeat.

Forward stretch with finger interlocked



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