Thursday, December 16, 2010

Setting and Activating the Scapula

This exercise helps you to build awareness of where the scapula is and learn what its normal positioning should be. (Click on this image to view video)

  1. Stand straight, with both hands hanging loosely by your sides.
  2. Extend the forefinger of your right hand and reach behind your back to lightly touch the medial (bottom inner) edge of your left scapula or shoulder blade. Keep the other arm relaxed.
  3. Bring both your scapulae downwards and towards the midline of your back to activate the lower trapezius muscles. You should be pushing towards the finger that is touching the scapula.
  • Ensure you do not activate any other muscles.
  • Keep the upper trapezius and latissimus dorsi of your back relaxed.
  • The entire movement should come from the muscles (lower trapezius) pushing the scapula down onto the finger.
  • This is the scapula’s normal (and desired) position, where the bottom of the scapula has flattened out.
  • Hold this position for 3 to 5 seconds and then take 3 to 5 seconds to slowly release and return to neutral position. Repeat 3 to 5 times on each side.
Note: Poor scapular positioning will cause the bottom edge of the scapula to protrude outwards.

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