What it means for you
Your limitations reflect a “compression”, or tightness, of the front (anterior) side of your upper body. This means that you have tight muscles in that region that are “pulling” your shoulders forward and restricting range of motion associated with the ability to elongate those muscles when necessary.
These muscles include:
- Pectoralis Major and Minor
On the visualization, red arrows represent tight muscles and orange arrows represent where your body is being pushed/pulled as a result.
How does this cause SCAPULAR WINGING/ROUNDED SHOULDERs?
The body is primarily concerend with keeping you alive. An important way we do that is breathing. In fact, there is a good bit of evidence that suggests if you stop breathing, you die 😉
The body likes to self-organize itself in a manner which allows it to most easily breathe. The primary way we take in air is through our diaphragm. Whe we inhale, the diaphragm descends. When we exhale, it ascends.
Currently, your diaphragm cannot function as necessary, so it has engaged “secondary” muscles of inhalation to help you get the job done. The restriction of your tight pecs are preventing your diaphragm from being able to ascend as it should upon exhalation, so it is essentially “stuck” in a downward, descended state.
The secondary muscles of inhalation in your neck, which should be working to a slight degree during breathing are now working in overdrive to make up for a lack of diaphragm function. Notice that they attach on the upper ribs. They’re trying to open your ribcage to allow for air to come into the compressed area. This chronically shortens the neck muscles and pulls your head forward and shoulders with it.
Try right now to push your head forward. What happens to your shoulders? They round forward with it. That is what is happening to your body constantly.