Winged Blades

Winged shoulder blades (aka Scapula) has become something rather normal.  Forward posture brings the shoulder blades up and puts slack on a muscle group beneath the scapula.

Back shot

 

Serratus Anterior

Serratus Anterior are flat muscles that are between the rib bones of the rib cage.  They go backwards towards the scapula and eventually insert into the inner side of the blade.

These muscles help extend out your arm in front of you and allows the rotation of your scapula during movement.

If Serratus Anterior becomes weak, the arm will have a harder time extending your arm out, and range of motion in the scapula will decrease.  Furthermore, this will cause your scapula to “wing out.”

 

Personal Note: My picture below shows a test to see if you have winging scapulas. (You might need a partner for this test.) 

Put one hand on your lower back. If you or your partner can put more than the tips of your fingers underneath your shoulder blade on the same side, that’s a good indication of a winging scapula.

Some clients on my table have such a high wing, I can put almost half my hand under their blade. 

“How do I reverse this winging scapula?”
Guerrilla Zen Fitness has 3 excellent exercises to help strengthen Serratus Anterior.

Personal Note: Watching this, I also realized that the first exercise he does is one that my clients do to help restrengthen the muscles between the scapulas to bring the shoulders back into a proper posture.  Remember, never do an exerise that is painful to do.  Take it slow, and use light weights first.  If an exercise is still painful to do, either check with your doctor or go to a gym to ask a trainer.  You might be doing the exercise incorrectly!

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