By Marie-José Blom
The Body Functioning as a Whole is Motivated by Interconnected Pathways of Fascia and Driven by Movement and Posture…
Yet head, neck and shoulders are the easy target to become the (substitute) support system.
illustration from Anatomy, Dysfunction & Treatment by Serge Paoletti
Head, Neck And Shoulder Works
Observing posture of the mean individual may give you a quite accurate impression of where in the body one lives, leads or moves or…not. The time that I spend waiting at the airport is the ideal place for “posture sighting”. Here people are so preoccupied that you can catch them in their “best of worst” daily postural habits. As well as other habits that I will leave for others to write about.
The real time observations:
- Walking – the heads leads the body, by more then a margin.
- Sitting – the head forward slump combination.
- Carrying… anything – a shoulders forward effort with plenty of internal rotation, and this is only above the waistline.
No this is not genetic, gender or age specific. It seems to be the new norm. The early onset of this poor posture bug is, according to the real time observation, much supported by the 24/7 use of our communication devices. Yes I have witnessed very skilled 3 year olds, seated in a buggy… dead to the real world, probably checking the stock market (Do you get that I am envious?).
What does this trend mean for the future for us as movement educators or for the entire wellness industry for that matter?
Our future clients will be younger, presenting with the same back and neck issues not related to aging but to early onset wear and tear. This is where aging is not related to a number but to a feeling. On the upside, our field of business is finally going to be more profitable than the average fashionable “pet boutique”.
A well known posture formula by Vladimir Janda, states the following observation:
“Experimentation becomes gesture/tendency.
Gesture/tendency becomes posture/habit.
Posture/habit becomes structure/identity.”
(this may be applied for the good or the bad)
Given that the body is functioning as a whole. The postural habit by default has to ideally be restored or rebalanced from the foundation up and from the foundation down.
In the previous installment the focus was on restoring this foundation. This foundation, from where all movement is supported and motivated, the respiratory system. In the previous newsletter we addressed global and deep tissue mobility, restored the rib joint mobility related to the spine and also reintroduced the very important “spinal wave “.
The spinal wave relates to the movement of respiration that thru its movement connects the sacrum biomechanically to the cervical spine and the cranium.
As there are many roads that lead to Rome, compared with the body, also many layers and pathways of fascia lead from the pelvic floor to the shoulder girdle, head and neck.
Beginning this pathway at the pelvic floor, the perineal fascia reaches and blends into all directions to ultimately involve and connect with the cervical spine.
- the fascia of the lower limb into the pelvis as the obturator fascia
- merging with the peritoneum and the fascia of the transverse Abdominis
- connecting the transverse Abdominis (three layers) with the diaphragm
- the crux of the diaphragm share a fascial connection with the fascia of the illiopsoas (back again into the pelvic floor)
- the diaphragm shares it’s fascia (the diaphragmatic pleura) with the parietal pleura of the lungs as well as with the pericardium of the heart
- the lungs are on both sides topped by a pleural dome which is slightly exposed beyond the first rib
It is here that the fascia of the lungs further invests with the deep cervical fascia, thus the fascia of the neck as well as the fascia of the scalenes, the muscles of the neck. Taking these connections in consideration, it is not really hard to visualize how the cervical spine musculature could behave as the end station of compensation via the entire involved fascial track from top to bottom.
The resulting now overactive structures will even affect and restrict the essential movement of the respiratory diaphragm, sabotaging the descent upon inhalation. This is because the scalenes will uphold the lung fascia, which in return upholds the diaphragm. Ultimately this will affect the necessary IAP that mitigates posture and “Core Ability “.
View this special animation of respiratory events by Fiametti. This version is in slow motion and translated by me from French into English.
Teach and Treat SmartSpine™ Solution
If the above scenario is all too familiar with you, the following illustrated protocol may just be the solution to recalibrate posture and alignment from the head, neck and shoulders back to the center.
Tools for this protocol (SmartSpine™ and SmartGlobe) are available online at www.smartspine.com.
Use code: “mj20” for a 15% discount. This code is valid July 4, 2016 – August 4, 2016.
HEAD, NECK, AND SHOULDER WORKS (SmartSpine™ & SmartGlobe)
Breathing Assisted Neck Release – SmartSpine™
- A release and mobilization protocol to liberate and associated movements of the head, neck, and shoulders
- To realign and restore movement synergy and harmony with the respiratory system
In supine position, the client, with head towards the end of the treatment table (or on the floor), knees and hips flexed in a 45° angle. The instructor places the SmartSpine™ as a supporting sling (warmed) under the occipital bas.
While keeping tension in the SmartSpine™, gently roll the relaxed head and neck from side to side without and side shift or translation off center.
Respiratory Assisted Traction – SmartSpine™ & SmartGlobe
Take both handles of the SmartSpine™ in one hand. Position your body sideways, the handles in the far hand; the other hand is positioned on the SmartGlobe resting on the client’s sternum.
- Exhale: gently sink the SmartGlobe and drag it toward the pelvis while with light traction the cranial base is lengthened away from the shoulders
superior fascia / lymphatic pump
Scalene and Upper Trapezius Release
Let one SmartSpine™ handle rest on the table, then switch hands. With the one hand you have, gently rotate the head toward the opposite side and depress the shoulder with the SmartGlobe.
- Inhale: gently guide head rotation
- Exhale: depress the shoulder
To Complete Protocol 3:
Center the head and drape the SmartSpine™ over both shoulders and gently depress.
- During the exhalation: gently depress the shoulders
Positioning & Preparation:
Attach the long yellow (light leg) to the SmartSpine™ handles and connect to the top from or the trapeze table. Position the warmed SmartSpine™ sling just behind the occipital base. Allow the client to move away from the frame until slight traction is experienced.
- A very small rolling (nodding) of the head without moving the cervical spine
- With neutral head alignment:
- Puppet arms
- Small arm circles
- Leg levitations
- Leg slides