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December 8, 2006

Shoulder Weakness

A client comes in presenting with shoulder weakness. They report that their habit is to sleep on their side with an arm up under their head. During the night, the arm goes numb so they have to switch sides. As a result of this they are unable to elevate their shoulder girdle and every time a weather front comes through they get a crick in their neck.

Upon palpation, I felt tightness in the scalene area around GB43 at the top of the shoulder. I like to work with clients in a side-lying position because it presents the muscles in a way that is different and more accessible than prone or supine positions. Seated on the table behind the client, I use both hands with the arm closest to the client supporting the weight of the arm. I access the scalene area and roll the shoulder girdle with my fingers working the muscles. This is a very tender area, so good communication is essential. The position also allows for advantageous access to the muscles involved in neck cricks.

My client left the session with much more mobility in the shoulders. They felt as though they had much more strength to elevate the shoulders. I advised morning stretches and shoulder rolls while turning the head left and right and side-bending.

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Posted by linda at December 8, 2006 7:29 AM

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