forward rotated shoulders

To Permanently Reverse Sore, Achy, Stiff Shoulders: Do THIS & Stop Spending so Much Money on Massage Results that Never Last!

When I was a massage therapist (way back in 2008!) every single client who walked into my office asked me (some even begged me) to dig into their shoulders. Regardless of whether or not they had other issues (and most did, like low back pain, hip pain, etc), they all wanted their shoulders to get some relief from carrying the weight of the world.

For my entire short lived (year long) career as a massage therapist, I made people feel amazing for an hour or 90 minutes. They left feeling loosey goosey, a little high and finally at peace. But every time they came back their shoulders would be right back where they were before: stiff, achy, sore and in need of some major love (or a beat down, which a lot of people requested).

I quit massage therapy in large part because, though I was very good at it, I never helped permanently reverse my clients’ pain. I’m a very goal oriented person, so this wasn’t ok with me!

If you want to permanently reverse your shoulder tension, then you need to commit yourself to not only getting the proper areas of fascia released (which is not necessarily your shoulders or traps), you MUST also strengthen your mid back muscles.

Sure, the human body can adapt to “poor” posture. You may even live that way without serious pain; for a few decades. Trust me though when I tell you, you do NOT want to end up like my older clients who are 70 or 75 and wishing desperately they had learned all of this earlier, before compensation pattern piled onto compensation pattern and a lifetime of poor posture and stressful bio-mechanics caught up to them.

Start Strengthening NOW! (You can ‘release’ any time)

These exercises will take some time to carve new neural pathways and build healthier structure so I say don’t delay for any reason, start NOW. They will yield small rewards quickly that will build over time, and you can ‘release’ the tight areas as soon as you can make time (how to’s for that at the bottom of this article).

What we’re targeting:

The upper traps are one of the most overworked and overactive muscles, ready to work for us at any given moment. No wonder they’re so tired and angry (stiff/sore/achy)!

To counteract this overactive pattern we have to strengthen the lower traps and actively STOP engaging the upper traps during so many upper body exercises.

The following exercises target the lower traps, rhomboids and lats with short intentional movements of the shoulder girdle: downward rotation (depressing the scapula), and retraction (pulling the scapula back towards the spine).

Create new neural pathways and healthy habits:

Read More

Eliminate Neck Pain! Best Release EVER for Stiff Necks, TMJ Pain & Tension Headaches

Screen Shot 2016-08-09 at 12.09.28 PM

Say goodbye to neck pain!

This is one of the very few self-help techniques I’ve come up with that can perfectly mimic what I do in my private practice, and that means you should get an INSTANT and very powerful result (if you do it correctly).

Before I go any further, however…

WARNING: DO THIS FIRST!

If if you have significant neck pain of any kind, I highly encourage you to use my pec and deltoid release BEFORE attempting this technique.

The majority of neck pain does not originate in the neck, it is usually in your chest and (front) shoulders. If you try to release your neck first you might make things worse. The reason is, often times our neck is getting “tight” because it is fighting the constant pull of our forward rotated shoulders; it’s engaged in an unwinnable battle to pull our necks back where they are supposed to be.

If this is the case and you release your neck WITHOUT releasing the chest FIRST, then you’ve just created a scenario in which your neck will be FAR more likely to be pulled forward from the chest tightness that is still present, the very thing the neck is attempting to counteract by pulling back and tightening up. Your neck may react by clamping down even harder after a few hours, which is not what we want!

For the BEST result no matter what your situation or goal: combine the pec and deltoid release with this one and your head will feel like it’s floating!

This technique can relieve or eliminate:

  • Neck pain of ALL kinds
  • Tension headaches and migraines (if tension related)
  • Jaw and TMJ pain
  • Grip issues related to a nerve blockage in the neck
  • Thoracic Outlet Syndrome and/or nerve pain shooting down the arm
  • Brachial Plexus issues
  • “Text neck” or pain associated with looking down for hours every day
  • Whiplash
  • Neck pain associated with forward rotated shoulders and
  • forward head posture
  • and…I’ve even been told by 3 clients that they believe this technique (in my office, not the lacrosse ball version) improved their EYESIGHT! I’m not sure I can substantiate that claim, BUT…the area you’re releasing with this technique does block or open a blood pathway to the ocular nerve…so ya never know!
Read More

Pec and Front Deltoid Release for Relaxed Shoulders and Necks

Screen Shot 2016-08-09 at 12.09.28 PM

If you look down at your phone all day, work on a computer, have small children and carry them frequently, have forward head posture or forward rotated shoulders etc, then this is something you will want to include in a weekly fascial health routine.

You will need a lacrosse ball for these two techniques.

Release your pecs for more upper body freedom!

While we will certainly grab and stretch pec major in this technique, it is really THE FASCIA in and around pec minor that we want to target.

Pec minor attaches to the 3rd, 4th and 5th ribs and draws the scapula forward and down, and elevates the ribs if the origin and insertion are reversed. 

The primary actions of this muscle include the stabilization, depression, abduction or protraction, upward tilt, and downward rotation of the scapula. When the ribs are immobilized, this muscle brings the scapula forward, and when the scapula is fixed, it lifts up the rib cage. (Excerpt from healthline.com)

As you can see it plays a huge role in shoulder mobility. When overly tight it contributes to forward head posture, forward rotated shoulders and the pain patterns that arise from this (which include neck pain, shoulder pain, headaches etc).

These techniques can help address:

  • Shoulder pain
  • Rotator cuff issues
  • Forward head posture
  • Forward rotated shoulders
  • Headaches, if they are tension related
  • Neck Pain
  • Whiplash
  • TMJ pain
Read More