Faculty 6: Anatomical Assessment

ShouldersThe Shoulders

"Organize the Shoulders"

When we gather enthusiasm to boldly receive and valiantly endure  (get brave) we release the weight of the world from our shoulders and in turn open our hearts…

Organizing the shoulders is a practical exploration of how to negotiate the details of our infrastructure to align with our intention. From the weight of the world to the heaviness of our daily totes, we all know what it feels like to carry stress in the shoulders. The Shoulders liaison the general state of affairs between the Core, Inner and Outer (Self) Stories. In the role of the Guard &/or Guardian, the shoulders are the gatekeepers of the heart, throat and upper back.

The shape of our shoulders conveys messages about how we feel in our bodies. For example, shoulders raised up signals tension, rounded forward signals fear, forced back signals militant force, frozen in place signals utter exhaustion, dislocated signals effusive boundaries, one up/one down signals uncertainty and imbalance -- but which positions signal themes of quiet confidence, comfort, productivity and genuine openness? Tough question. To know where to place our shoulders we must first understand the roots of their habituated expressions -- many of which are symptoms of too much stress (struggle, strife &/or stagnancy).

Fight or flight responses course through the legs and surge through the arms.  The Core Story sounds the alarm and there's no turning back. The freight train has left the station. Inside our bodies we undergo a series of powerful equations that demand our attention. The Inner Story recruits “all hands on deck,” sending 300 percent more blood to the extrinsic muscles to either hit the road running or stand guard: Get ready to throw punches!

Meanwhile, in our outer story, we may show very few signs of all this inner commotion. Rarely do we sprint away from an adversarial co-worker, slug the person who cut us in line or hide under our bed when the TV is too loud. Nevertheless, the echo of our instincts may reveal otherwise. Our shoulders take the greatest hit as the first line of defense. They are the Fighters. While the legs may flee -- and the mind may abandon the body all together - the shoulders are left behind to execute the defense.

To align the shoulders with more ease requires the willful willingness of a peaceful warrior. Every time we allow our buttons to be pushed -- we signal the shoulders to express this discomfort (dis-ease). We must take ownership for the environments we create around us and from a calm-abiding place shape experiences that resonate with our core values.

As we spend more time with people, places and things that connect us deeper to positive feelings, we begin to know the space within our hearts that responds to any and all situations with dignity and grace. Our shoulders soften and yet, our composure emanates indomitable strength: guards become guardians and gatekeepers tend boundaries as the moon cues the tide.

Main Points: Scapula, Clavicles, Glenoid Fossa, Coracoid Process, Spine of the Scapula, Supraspinous Fossa, Infraspinous Fossa, Glenoid Labrum, Sternoclavicular Articulation, Glenohumeral Joint, Scapulothoracic Conversation, Acromioclavicular Joint

Marker Points: The lower tips of the shoulder blades and the outer most edges of the collarbones (acromium process)

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