Too often I see clients in my work as physical therapist who have injured their rotator cuff in doing their “normal” daily movements of habit. Athletic overuse is a common rotator cuff injury source but this article is not addressing that.
Two common causes for injury in the shoulder are reaching for the night light while lying on your back (shoulder lifts, rotates out and abducts) and reaching to the back of the car seat from the front. Anatomically the shoulder is not a very stable joint. It relies on its muscles and ligaments for stability. That stability is challenged with postural weakness or imbalances and unhealthy movement habits that cause micro traumas and eventually a torn tendon. We need to become aware of our habits in order to change some of them or make them better.
The most important element in learning good body mechanics is the movement from the core: when lying on your back and wanting to turn off the light to your right, roll on to your right side and initiate that movement from the core: allow the left arm to be the extension of your torso while reaching. When you fixate your torso while lying on your back and reach with your arm to the side, you are putting unnecessary pressure into the shoulder and overstretch the anterior structures. When the rotator cuff is already inflamed or thickened the risk of tear is high. Same for the car scenario: shift weight onto the right side of your pelvis and turn your whole self to the right. This way your shoulder is not overstretched and most of the movement happens in the pelvis with even distribution of spinal twist movement.
Moving the way nature intended us to is for too many people beyond their reality. But it is never too late to learn and move beyond our limiting patterns. Move with ease and pleasure…….and join any of our weekly, ongoing Feldenkrais classes. For further questions, call Marion Kregeloh at 415-479-1765