When you have tight, stiff shoulders it can affect your
breathing, pelvic floor, lower back ache and pelvis.
Your body molds to the shape it is in most often, some muscles become over tight, some weaken, your joints become stiff. Your body then compensates in other areas to allow you to move and do what you need. This all leads to chronic tension, aches and stiffness.
Through fascia, all of your body is connected there are no bits that work in isolation and often pain in one area is just a symptom of stiffness, tension and weakness in a totally different area, and this is why a whole-body approach works so well.
Through fascia your shoulders and pelvis are joined, fascia is connective tissue just beneath the skin that attaches, stabilises, encloses and separates muscles and organs.
If you have stiff shoulders then working on releasing tension and stabilising your pelvis may well help address the issue. You will still have to change how you use your shoulders of course but if you don’t also address any pelvic issue you will continue to have stiff and achey shoulders which could lead to shoulder injuries.
What can you do to help keep your shoulders and pelvis mobile? Get into a routine of doing some arm circling every morning – the key is slow and controlled circling no whirling like a windmill in a storm – that won’t help to move through the stiff parts. Slow, controlled movements. The same with your pelvis, work on isolating and circling your pelvis only don’t let your shoulders come along for the ride. What we are looking to do is start to be able to move our parts in isolation in their full range of motion. Even though they are connected by fascia doesn’t mean that they need to work together.
Rosie is an alignment and movement teacher who runs regular weekly movement classes in Ipswich. She has a special interest in pregnancy and postpartum and pelvic floor rehab.