If a client has one or both scapulae winging, how do you go about fixing this?
When assessing posture, flexibility and function, it is always important to keep in mind that with distortion patterns (such as scapular winging), there will be short muscle(s) creating the problem as well as lengthened muscle(s) allowing the problem.
- Short Muscle(s) to be Lengthened: (SMFR-self myofascial release on foam roll, static stretching, massage therapy)
- Lengthened Muscle(s) to be Strengthened:
- Serratus Anterior
- Lower Trapezius
- Prone Floor/Ball Cobra
- Standing Dumbbell Scaption
- Shoulder PNF Patterns (up and outs, down and outs, etc.)
All stretches and exercises can be found in the PTontheNET.com Exercise & Flexibility Library.
It also important to realize that these muscular imbalances are very rarely isolated incidences. It has often been my experience that along with winging scapulae, during your postural assessment, you may also notice elevation and/or protraction of the shoulders, with a forward head lean, otherwise known as Upper Crossed Posture. You may also notice restrictions at the lumbo-pelvic hip complex, which may have caused segmental shifting to occur throughout the Kinetic Chain, resulting in the winging scapulae. My point is this: Try to avoid paying attention to only one joint at a time when assessing or training someone. Rather, try watch holistically, as the body is a master compensator.