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Deconstructing Down Dog Putting it All Together Part 5 of 10

Updated: Jul 10, 2023

In the first 4 videos I gave a bit of a background as to why someone would have difficulty finding a down dog position. In the previous videos you can start connecting with the concept of the pose conforms to you. That everyone's pose will have similarities and differences based off genetics, life experience that made these bodies, and available strength. The next set of videos will be covering why the hamstrings aren't the only muscle group that would be restricting this movement.

Remember, we all have a genetic potential. Some people reach it faster than others. When the restriction is based of genetics how the bone is sitting in the joint plays an enormous role and this is where acceptance of self plays a big role. When the restriction is functional, stretching and strengthening cane help quite a bit. But, this too has some sort of limit. While our minds are limitless and how we can serve and connect is limitless, our bodies DO have a limit.

Now what about 3-legged Dog, One have fun with it

Three legged dog is a balance pose. There is only three points of contact. To help ‘balance’ the weight taking a wider stance with the hands is usually a good idea, especially for those who are still developing strength This pose is also good as a calf stretch. 1. Wider stance with hands 2. Allow the heel to relax to the floor to allow for stretch. It doesn’t have to touch floor. If having trouble strength wise simply rest and come back 3. If you open and drop the hip of the leg in the air you can find different areas of the calf to release. 4. Have fun with poses by exploring different positions. Developing the intimate relationship between you and your body.

Shoulder Abduction:

When I’m helping someone either personal training or yoga and there is a lack of range of motion or discomfort with the shoulder; I will often say that there is a faulty recruitment pattern for the movement. The client will often ask what that means. It means there’s a problem in the sequence order of the muscles. You still get this look of not quite understanding what I mean. Muscles just work and do their job right? There is an order to the sequence of muscles. This sequence order is held in the brain, so to speak, until something alters that sequence. Abduction of the arm (lifting the arm out to the side and up over your head) is a complex movement and has a specific sequence so that all is good in the shoulder complex. In yoga, we pull on this movement often. People ignore some of the softer discomfort as though it will go away if they get stronger. What they find is that it doesn’t go away and if anything other things start to get worse. They are also driving the dysfunction deeper into their system. Meaning the dysfunctional movement pattern is what the brain/body go after first, since it’s the strongest pattern. Doesn’t make it right or wrong simply the strongest. This is also why I can’t empathize this enough in class to find other arm positions or height of the arm to be in position where there is no discomfort. The neck wasn’t designed to hold you up in down dog. If that’s where you feel it most of time and it’s burning like a muscle working hard. You are simply training your body to use the neck over the bigger back muscles to assist the arms. This is a recipe for pain The sequence order for the shoulder in abduction without additional weight in your hand: ✅ Supraspinatus ✅Middle Deltoid ✅Upper Traps ✅Biceps ✅Teres Major (internal rotation) ✅Teres Minor (external rotation) ✅Rhomboid Major ✅Levator Scapula ✅SCM (sternocleidomastoid) ✅Pec Major sternal w/Pec Minor ✅Pec Major clavicular ✅Subclavius As you can see it’s quite an involved movement. As far as when these muscles come on: -the First four muscles happens up to 90 degrees of abduction The next four muscles begin their job around 90-110 degrees of abduction the last four muscles begin their job around 110-120 degrees You might feel a sharp pinchy feeling on the medial side of the clavicle.You might feel like something is stuck and needs to move over on the lateral side of the clavicle You may feel like you can’t get the arm all the up without having to bend your arm to do so. You may avoid apart of the movement by altering how the rest of the body movesYou may feel like your neck does all the workThere are probably more descriptions that people have given me over the years. Sometimes it can get sorted about by stretching and then strengthening Sometimes that only helps for a little bit. Sometimes soft tissue work helps and combining the two helpsSometimes that combo doesn’t work either or at least long termThis is where I step in with P-DTR to sort that out. This gets into dysfunction that your typical approach is not able to get. I pair P-DTR with my corrective CHEK skills so we can get full range of motion back, decrease pain or discomfort so you can get back to your fun things. It’s about building a toolbox and pulling out the right tools for the job. It’s not always yoga, it’s not always massage, it’s not always whatever it is you do. Example: yesterday in class one of the participants was still having shoulder trouble. I could see she was taped up. Nothing was helping. I had asked if she would like me to do some PDTR after class to see if it would help. She was open to it since nothing else was helping. I did four corrections using Pdtr. Her range of motion improved, the movement itself improved and he shoulders leveled out. She feels an increase of relief and now wants a full session Since yoga is becoming more and more mainstream you will begin to see more and more problems.

s it the person coming into the poses? Yes Is it the instructor either not knowing enough or conveying that there is only one way? Yes People are going to get hurt and instructors are going to miss things. There is good and and not so good in every profession. Simply don’t get stuck there and just seek out people that are able to help. When I go to other classes I know that I know more about my body than any other person on the planet. I do not let any instructor put me in a position that I know is not good for me. It is up to me to respectfully let them know. Most are cool with that and the ones that aren’t —who cares ... it’s your body. You’re not in a class where it’s life or death if you don’t do it their way. This is why I study the body so much, so I can be open and realize that poses will look different and they should. I also know amazing things to help you get out of pain and move better. And I teach you these things so you can take these concepts into your own practice or other classes so you are the empowered one

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