Tutorial #676

Quick Shoulder Release

15 min - Tutorial


Join Niedra for this under-15-minute Foam Roller and Theraband routine aimed at opening up the shoulder girdle and releasing structural patterns that keep the shoulders tight. Enjoy!
What You'll Need: Mat, Foam Roller, Theraband

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(Pace N/A)
Apr 22, 2012
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Okay. Okay. So tonight we're going to do um, a short series of exercises to really open up the shoulders. Everybody's got rounded shoulders. It's like a epidemic conditions. So a, it's always worth doing. It gives a lot of relief and such really the neck. So Debbie, what I would like you to do is lie down on the foam roller with your hips and your head on. So it will be lined up down the center of your spine. Cool.

And that takes some maneuvering to yes. Is that straight? You want to have habits feel straight under your own body. Yeah. So the wonderful thing is that it's down the center and let the shoulders roll out and now bring your hands and bring the elbows starting this way you want to elbow right in line with your shoulder and do that the same with the other hand. So you first, you start like with this box shape and you want this nice stretch here and now without anything changing, start moving the hand back towards, keep the elbow on the floor.

So you're taking the elbow and you're moving the hand back. So as you can see, you're a little tight and you just want to hold a tear because of this. What this starts to do is stretch all the tissue around the coughs, all the pecks connecting into here. And I can see already, Debbie, when the children is tight, it's very easy for the elbow to start to come down. So make sure if you can keep the elbows in line with your shoulders and because you're tight, I'm going to get you a little help. So there are different sized foam rollers and very tight people.

The big foot rollers, they're too high. So let's do this for you. At least you get grounded and yes, so just working, that starts to open up the packs, open up the chest in time. This area of the shoulder that rolls forward starts to come up and back and I can see you starting to relax a little bit. So there's more space, the tighter you are, or if you have a job where you do have with computers, the more frequently you can do this, the better off. And your whole upper chest looks different quite fast. Now, Debbie, from here, start to take the elbows are, so you have pockets and start to glide the elbows downwards.

So, and bring the shoulders and shoulder blades down your back. [inaudible] and then, and then take the hands and starts to lengthen them out towards the floor. So they're literally, yes, yes. Long, long, long arms with this rotation happening. Good. And then without the elbow locking, but just open start to glide the hand. If you can on the floor, move this pillow away, up over.

And any place that you feel tight along the way, you kind of spend a little time, then you'll have all these little knotted areas that are restricting you. That's it. That's it. And then you start again. You start bending the elbows, try to think of the elbows floating towards the floor. Let's give you a little padding again. Um, I would normally work with a slightly smaller bolster for awhile with you and keep bringing the elbows down, elbows down, elbows down, stretch the hands out on the floor with the palms up and then sweep them out to the side. Uh, get the pillows out of the way. There you go. What? Okay. Yes, that's it.

And then start again. So you start bending the elbows. Let's pause here. That's it. Work. Now you're a little bit looser so you can already work this rotation. So the cough is moving back.

All the skin on the back body starting to glide down. As you become dispositive from any dam, as you get looser, you start to check that the lower ribs are down as well. Cause usually when the lower ribs come down, the shoulders come down. But that's for you later because if you're really tight, I'd much rather have the lip ribs up, but the stretch focused in on the packs and then start bringing the elbows down. Very good. Stretch the arms out and again, float them up.

Good, good. Very nice. And one more time. Come back to this position where you're in this like a box shape and let's have the hands come to the ceiling so the elbows will be right in line with the shoulders if you can then, and now you're going to do windshield wipers. So you bring the hands forward even at the shoulder comes forward and then you take them up and you rotate them back. So you work that whole angle and forward and back I into at the beginning like you can feel there's a lot of like the, the cuff is very tight and it drags, but later on it's easy to keep the shoulders down and working.

Right now because you're title, we just want you moving and getting more range of movement available so you can start to release some of that tension one more time and very nice. Now bring the hands down by your sides and you just now you're ha you, all you're doing is using your hands to stabilizers so they're going to be on the floor so you don't fall off the bolster. Let the shoulders go wide and this is to start to stretch the chest, the neck, turn your head to one side and let the shoulder that you're turning your head away from. Don't let it pull up so that it's to really get this stretch along there and then turn the head the other way. That's it. Then then come back and you just go back and forth.

Now as you're turning your chin to wonder side, you can gently rock your body in the opposite direction. So with your yes, so your feet can push you in the opposite direction to your Chin and face [inaudible] and then you slowly in, these are movements you do slowly. So you pay attention to what's happening. You pay attention to where the skin and the tissue and the muscles are dragging and pulling. And maybe the soldiers want the bunch up so that you can consciously not activate things that are pulling you. And if possible, instead of lifting your head, Deb, let your head roll. So it's actually so it will get a little deeper into the neck. Yes, that's it.

And yes, and check that the shoulders [inaudible] keep checking those shoulders cause they will, the pattern is that they pull in and they start to close down under the collar bones. The sternum starts to drop and the whole posture starts to be compromised and get tighter. And you already look so much more open. This is great. So after you've done both sides. Yeah, I know. If you feel safe, you can come up to a sitting position. If you're not safe.

Let's do this. Let's have you roll to one side. So you roll off [inaudible] and then come up to an upright position. So that's a little sequence. It can be done on the bolster. And I would like to add, come up to a standing position. We'll do a few more things using a theraband and get the theraband holding the band.

And you want to take the band and slike. I'm sorry. Bring it up over your head and turn the hands away from you. That's it. And lift arms up. Now pull the band apart, take it behind you a little bit behind you, and then use the band to let, let it relax so it pulls your shoulders and hands closer together. Then pull the band apart, take it lower, and let the band pull you together and pull it apart. Take the band lower and then pull it together so it's pinching your shoulder blades. Opening the chest one more time. Par, little lower.

Make sure the hands have turned out and then together. So there's this beautiful stretch. So good. Okay. Bring the hands up again. Come up. Was that easy or hard or hard? Okay. Because if it was easy, I would tell you to bring the hands closer together.

Otherwise you keep it at the same tension. So again, palms facing out. Pull the bar, the band apart. Take your arms back, lift your chest, lift your chest. That's it. Let the band come together. Good. Pull the band apart. Take it a little bit further back. Let the band release and pull your shoulder blades together. Pull the band apart. Lower the little bit lower. See if you can keep the hands rotating out. Moon. There you go.

Then let release attention. Good. Pull the band apart. Lower and release the tension. I think let's do a little closer and turn the hands inside out. There we go. So we got all of this opening. Good. Pull the band apart. Lift your chest, let the band come together, lift the arms, pull the band apart. Let the hands come together.

Now pull the band apart, lifted and let the band pull you together. Pull the band apart, lift more, let the band pull you together. Good. Pull the band apart. Lift a little more and see, that's it. And one more time. Pull. Lift up. Come a little higher Debbie. Let the band pull you together and then bring the arms over.

So just the roll the shoulders. Pretty intense. Yeah. Should already start to feel a little bit more open. Yes. Take the band and wrap it underneath your shoulder blade. Yes.

And now, so we have about even lengths. And now take one hand and wrap it around and wrap it around. And you want to have a certain amount of tension. And so bring your elbows in, elbows forward, hands down and stretch. And do you see how my hands a little bit in front of my shoulders?

So making this v-shape press, that's it. And back and press. The hand comes. No, this, this angle. There we go. And then bend the hands back and press them. So they'll be coming in front of your, there we go. But you're working.

That's it. Do you feel that and back and rotate out and lift the chest. There we go. Add back and press out and open the chest and back and press out and open the chest and back two more times and press out and open the chest and back. And one more time and press out and open the chest and back.

And then relaxing on staff. So just stand here for a minute. Yup. And roll the shoulders and reverse it other way. I just stand for a minute and see how you feel. It should feel quite a bit looser. This is something you'd take anywhere in the world with you anytime you've been spending a lot of time sitting. Great work to do. Thank you.


1 person likes this.
Niedra you are a great teacher. And this shoulder workout is just what I need to work on my posture.
very nice, thankyou...great for my non-stop texting son!
Elsabe D
Thx Niedra! Ihave so many clients with tight shoulders! This is going to be so helpful!
1 person likes this.
Great little chest opening workout! I also really like the the model is a "real" person and not a super woman or another pilates teacher. Can we have more real-world, average models?
Elise, none of the people in the classes are models. It's true a lot of the classes are attended by instructors, but in fact, in those moments they are students. That said, I take your point to heart and will continue to encourage all to stop by the studio to practice with us. Thank you.
Felt like rehab for old shoulder injuries. Added to my favorites, thank you!
Unfortunately my video stops playing at 2:50?
Amy~ I would suggest restarting your computer and then watching this video using Auto-Detect, a video viewing option located below the video player screen. This should help with the problem.
Great explanation! How wonderful it is to see people who are not experts participate in class --- it truly helps the rest of the novices and their actual problems (instead of what most of the videos portray...where class members are experts). Great video - keep those coming!
Niedra Gabriel
Thank you all - and I appreciate the comments about the various types of clients in class - the studio and filming is always open to all types of people, and many of the teachers come to be part of the filming because we have so many exciting teachers here. But filming is open to all to participate. I get that so many extra fit bodies can be intimidating - This is not intentional, we are just a community of enthusiasts here! and that said, many normal people LOVE Pilates anytime, and I have been invited to teach in the most " normal' places, due to having " normal" looking students - so please, everyone, stay normal, this world needs all of us, right?
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