Where Are Your Shoulders?

Stop what you are doing right now and look at your posture and notice…where are your shoulders? Chances are, if you are reading this while sitting at your desk or while looking at your phone, your shoulders are rounded forward. [Insert crying emoji😢]

When shoulders are rounded forward, the neck and chest muscles are always “on” which ultimately tires us out and causes muscular strain. When shoulders are rounded forward, the airway to and from the lungs is “bottlenecked” and thus making breathing more laborious. When shoulders are rounded forward, the lower back is in a slight flexion causing any impact to irritate the vulnerable vertebrae in that area of the spine. 

Bottomline: rounded shoulders are very very common, but they are not good. The opposite of rounded shoulders is shoulders back and down. That’s what I like to see! So how can we promote shoulders back and down

1. Sit less. Yup, you don’t need to strategize too heavily here…just move more and sit less. Can you take that phone call and stroll around your yard? Can you play actual basketball instead of xbox basketball? Can you ditch your phone every once in a while and look out at the horizon?
2. Do the “Inhale your shoulders up, exhale your shoulders down” exercise. Inhale and shrug your shoulders up towards your ears and exhale and release the shoulders down. Mobility in the shoulders is an excellent first step to bringing them back and down. 
3. Pretend to be a queen (sort of)! In all seriousness, emulate the posture of a confident person. A confident person does not make themselves smaller with hunching. They take up space and they breathe big.

There’s a mind-body connection when it comes to our shoulders. Fear gets in there so easily! Sometimes we have to fake it ’til you make it. Shoulder placement is such an easy thing to correct if you catch it in time. Don’t let your shoulders stifle you…be sure they are back and down.