Sinking the spine in between the shoulder blades
On the belly with the legs spread long, propped up and leaning on the elbows, you lift and lower your torso in between your shoulder blades to move your chest closer and further away from the floor. Then you lift one arm at a time forwards on the floor over the head. As yet another differentiation, you lift one shoulder towards the ear on the same side.
Instead of holding the chest static and moving the shoulders around the chest, we hold the shoulders static and move the chest and spine around the shoulders! What amazing benefits do we get from that? In which ways can the shoulders move, and how do the movements of the shoulders affect and improve the movements of the chest, neck, legs and even the feet? Can these movements relief neck pain? How about nerve pain in the legs, are these movements good for that, too? Let's find out!
Lie on your front side, in prone position, lean on your elbows.
After every rest sink and raise your spine in between your shoulder blades. Compare to before.
- Every new movement, every new variation, has the potential to improve the way you move.
If the first couple of movements made a tremendous difference, a huge improvement, this does not show your potential. It merely shows how bad it was. There is no limit to improvement.
In prone position, lean on your elbows, your gaze approx. towards the horizon, just not totally hanging and not forcibly looking up to the ceiling.
Sink and raise
Move your manubrium (sternum, chestbone) further away from the floor, then let it sink back towards the floor.
- Stay propped up on your elbows. Don't make large movements with your head, keep looking mostly in the same direction (for example, at the horizon).
Your manubrium, chest and spine lift further away from the floor, and come closer to the floor.
Your shoulder blades distance from each other when you lift your spine, and come together to almost touch each other when lowering your spine.
In prone position, lean on your left elbow, have your right arm slightly extended upwards on the floor, your right elbow neither completely straight nor completely bent, your wrist and hand relaxed. Rest your head on your left hand or lower arm, if you like.
Lift one elbow
Lift one elbow off the floor, e.g. the right elbow, a little bit. Observe the movement of your whole arm, including your shoulder blade.
- Your arm moves, it turns, lifts, lengthens or shortens, your shoulder blade moves, in which trajectory? What else moves?
Extended your arm straight up overhead on the floor, make a fist, the base of the thumb pointing to the ceiling. Place your fist close to your midline, instead of far out to the left.
Lift straight arm
Keep your elbow and wrist straight, with your pinky on the floor side, and your thumb on the ceiling side.
- Note that this is not just about how you hold your elbow and hand. In fact, this a different way to lift your arm. The shoulder blade produces a different movement than before.
Experiment if striking your fist down to the floor is more powerful with your elbow turned to the outside, or facing the floor.
Lean on both elbows like before.
Shoulder up, towards ear
Move your right shoulder upwards, towards your right ear, and back to its starting position.
- Move slowly at first, then also fast.
Explore the various possible pathways with each movement, even if it might look very similar from an outside perspective.
Lean on both elbows like before.
Shoulder up, with side-bending
Allow your right shoulder to push your head to turn to the left. Look towards your left foot.
- Move your right shoulder towards your right ear with and without allowing your shoulder to push your head.
Variation: Keep your head turned to look towards your left foot, and move your shoulder back and forth.
Lie on your belly, then prop yourself up onto your hands, with your elbows straight. Have your hands far up and away from your head or closer to your pelvis, consider your lower back, stay safe and comfortable.
Lower and lift chest
Do the same movement but with straight arms, lift and lower your chest.
- Where and how is this movement more challenging than when leaning on the elbows?
This is more of a teaser, or preview, of another lesson rather than part of the lesson. Keep it down to a few repetitions, especially if you're doing this lesson for the first time.