Sunday, March 15, 2015

take five: open those shoulders!

Most of us suffer from internal rotation of the humerus and upward rotation of the scapula (Think: over-stretched shoulders creeping up and forward as you slouch over your computer). Our upper trapezius is tight and tender, our rhomboids are achy, and our pectoral muscles are weakened, and our necks are strained. Some great things to do, take a deep breath and raise your shoulders to your ears, and as you exhale lower your shoulders down and back.

I suffer from frequent and malicious migraines, I have several comforting stretches. Fish Pose is one of them, and one I suggest for anyone who sits too long at a computer, or desk, or book, or suffers from pain due to repetitive motions in the shoulder, arms, and neck.

Fish Pose (matsyasana):
The unsupported version of this pose is lovely. It can be a deep release and stretch.

For a relaxing, more inactive stretch/opening of the shoulders, chest, and throat, try restorative fish pose.

Restorative Fish Pose

Lying on the ground, place a bolster, or two blankets (one rolled under your spine, the other folded under your head -if needed) along your spine and neck.

Bring your arms out to a T, palms facing up.

Lay for 5-10 minutes. Focus on breathing deeply, and smoothly. When you are ready to move, slowly roll to one side. Then use your arms to bring your upper body in to a seated position.

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