Many people think about the shoulder joint when they are recovering from a shoulder injury or when they want to strengthen their arms. But most people forget their scapula, or shoulder blade. The scapula fixes our shoulder to our body. It is the base that ensures we can position our arm exactly where we want it to go. It transfers strength from the trunk to the arm making the arm stronger. Failing to strengthen this area is guaranteed failure with your shoulder strength program and a high likely hood you are heading for a shoulder injury.
Two muscles are of particular importance to scapula (and therefore shoulder) stability, the lower trapezius and serratus anterior. Both hold the scapula against the chest wall. At PhysioLogix we use ultrasound imaging to allow our clients to see these muscles and therefore check they are working: if there is a failure of the muscles to correctly activate, ultrasound is a wonderful and easy way to learn how to do it right! And it’s not all about hard work. We could do something much simpler.
Research looking at the rotator cuff muscles of the shoulder (these are the muscles circling the shoulder joint) has shown that if you are standing or sitting straight, you are 20% stronger in these muscles than if you are in a slumped position. Just being mindful of your scapula position when doing gym work can go along way! So don’t forget to set good posture throughout your exercises.
If you have any questions please do not hesitate to contact PhysioLogix, upstairs at the Gap Health and Racquet Club, on (07) 3511 1112 or email us from our website at www.physiologix.com.au