Move with Hazel: Shoulder Party!

Hey everyone! Welcome back, I’m Hazel and this is session three! 

Today we’re going to be having a party for our shoulders! We’re gonna get some shoulder movement – now many of us don’t move our shoulders very well, so to start with I’m going to get really close to the camera and show you that I’ve put an ‘x’ on my elbow pit. On both sides there.

So, can you do this? This bone here, the humerus – it’s gotta stay still. And I’m gonna do this movement that we call pronation supination – you don’t need to remember that but can you keep this bone still and move here? Then, can you keep this bone still [pointing to forearm] and move this bone [pointing to bicep]? All the while you’re doing that, can you not move your shoulder around? Cos lots of people slop their shoulder blade, this bit here, around the back and we all get stuck in this position of internal rotation cos we spend so much time typing, driving, all of those things.

So play with those movements, it can help to grab something, hold something in your hand  to do that pronation supination and that internal external rotation – just play with it! On both sides, can you do those movements? If you can, awesome! If you can’t, something to practice!

So, the first move we’re gonna do here is called the blanket party. Now, I’m gonna do this on my knees so you can see what my hands are doing. But you’re gonna need a blanket, some kind of blanket – I’ve got a bath mat! Just, anything! And what you’re gonna start with is just this full shoulder movement – you’re gonna take that right around your back, and do that both ways. So if I show you that from the side here, I’m just taking this blanket around my back. What you’ll notice I’m not doing is this – I’m not thrusting my pelvis or thrusting my ribs, and I’m not moving other parts of my body, so I’m not leaning back to get it around here, I’m just moving at the shoulders. Shoulders, elbows, yeah. So play around with this one! It’s actually a really good workout for your shoulders! If you do this for five minutes, your shoulders will know all about it.

The other thing we don’t do very often, which may seem kind of weird, but just put your hands above your head and hold them up there! Make sure when you’re doing that, that again you’re not doing this – thrusting out your ribcage – but that you’re just moving at the shoulder joint. And just hold them up there for a few minutes and see what that feels like. And again, are you doing this – are you really using your neck muscles to hold them up? Or are you just using your shoulder muscles? Some things to think about!

Then, come back to the blanket party! This time you’re gonna try and do it with your elbows not bending very much. The first time we did it we did it like this, with our elbows really bent, the second time you just wanna straighten your elbows more. This will mean that you’ll be getting more movement at the shoulder joint. Cool! That is the blanket party!

The second one is the pizza party! Now, I don’t have a pizza, so I’m gonna use a book. And this book is called – very dramatically – “Sitting Kills, Moving Heals”, written by the first ever Director of Life Sciences at NASA, Dr Joan Vernikos – there’s a really cool interview with her on my website if you wanna check it out, she’s awesome! But this is the pizza party, right? So here I am, I’ve got this pizza on my hand, and I’m gonna be a very kind of fancy waiter! And I’m going to do this full movement to get it around. So can you do this in both directions? It’s tricky – it requires a lot of mobility at the shoulder. If you have to move – you’ll notice I’m moving my body around a little bit, that’s because my shoulder mobility needs work. Everybody’s shoulder mobility needs work! This is a super fun movement to just practice getting some movement into your shoulders. When you can do this without moving any of the rest of the body, you’re doing really well. But to start with, to ease the load on your shoulders, feel free to move other parts of your body.

That’s the pizza party! Blanket party, pizza party, doing weird things with your shoulders! I’m just gonna bring the camera a little bit closer down on the ground here so you can see me doing an exercise called the windmill.

So this one’s another really great one for your shoulder. What I’ll get you to do is get something underneath your head, put your head on it, then you’re gonna bring your top knee and bring it down on the ground here. Then you’re gonna reach your arm up towards the ceiling, and you’re gonna have a small bend in the elbow, you’re gonna externally rotate – so you can see my hand is going back and down. Then I’m kind of reaching towards the wall behind me and seeing how far I can take my arm that way.

So again, from the set up, you’re just kind of reaching back towards the wall, and up too, and you’re not gonna straighten your arm, you’re gonna have a wee bend in the elbow, cos you’re reaching from the elbow rather than reaching from the hand – creates different loads in the shoulder, and that’s what we’re after. Yeah, so this is called the windmill. So basically just take it back, and then you’re reaching up here, down here a little bit, and just finding spots that feel like they’d love a little bit of movement in that area. This one’s really, really great, as are the other ones we did today, for getting the lymph moving through your armpit, which is really important for our immune function at this time in the world!

So I hope you have a great day playing with these movements! Any questions, please get in touch at hazel@mindinmovement.co.nz, and I’ll see you soon for some more fun with your moving!