Have you got a bad shoulder?
If you are like many of my clients you have one shoulder that has been labelled "the bad shoulder". I always have a giggle when people call a part of their body "bad".
Like most problematic relationships, the remedy for our bodies follows the same advice a therapist might give a couple in counseling...a need to communicate more effectively.
The problem is we don't know how to communicate with our bodies much alone listen to them. So they start to complain, softly and if we don't listen then the minor ache or pain becomes difficult to ignore .
Most types of pain that we attribute to "getting older" are really movement problems. Aussie physiotherapist Josephine Keys says in her book "Back Pain", that most people presenting with back pain have movement problems and that retraining people in foundational movements is the best remedy.
But before you run off to the gym, strap on your sneakers or settle into your yoga routine...here's the deal. It's not exercise that you need, you don't need to get stronger or more flexible, in fact many of the well-meaning things that we do (hoping to get better) make things worse by strengthening the dysfunctional patterns that are causing the pain in the first place.
So what is movement then?
The rusty patterns many of us need to refresh are learning to hinge at the hips, learning to lengthen your spine, learning to restore movement to your shoulders through mindful movements that restore NATURAL movement patterns.
Take for instance that "bad" (giggle) shoulder. Your health care practitioner may have told you you have a torn rotator cuff or bone spurs or some other definitive diagnosis, but what caused the problem in the first place or set you up for injury was the lack of good movement habits.
With shoulders, even "bad" ones, much of the noise or problems that one experiences is from a high amount of tension in the shoulders and neck. The shoulder is meant to move. But if you're like most people your shoulders are glued to your rib cage or your ears and getting them to move is like difficult.
The best way to address the shoulder is through movements that focus on bringing awareness to the areas that influence the shoulder, such as the spine and rib cage. Much therapeutic focus is placed on the relationship of the arm bones to the shoulder but long term change often comes from freeing up the neck and rib cage.
The only person that can fix a movement problem in your body is you. And my classes are designed to teach you how.
If you'd like to learn how to:
- effortlessly reach your arm overhead
- free up your neck
- be able to pull on things
- be able to reduce pain and restore function of the shoulder girdle
- lay the groundwork for effective shoulder and arm strengthening