Daily Mobility Exercises by Dr. Kelly Starrett Forums General Scap, T-spine and lumbar spine

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    • #70414
      AvatarArchie McEachern

      Hey all,

      I have been absolutely miserable the last 2-years, and just found this site about 5-days ago. I injured my scap/rhomboid about 2-years ago while boxing. Over time, and a month of physical therapy, absolutely no relief took place and couldn’t afford to keep going to phys. therapy. The space between my spine and scapula on the left side has basically become rock solid. When I get chills, sometimes I don’t even feel it in that area. When I do pulls, I can feel the right side burning, but not the left. Over time, it appears that the problem has spread. I went to a sports massage therapist who said my insanely tight rhomboid began to pull on my intercostals on the left side, and also began to rotate my spine slightly causing my mid-right T-spine muscles to become rock solid as well.
      I bought a Gemini and today is my second day hammering away at the areas. It loosens up a little, but no matter how much I dig at the left rhomboid area, it remains rock solid, albeit some spasms/twitches. I also roll the Gemini up and down my t-spine to dig at the tight spots. Once it hits certain points on the right side it’s almost so intensely sudden that I quickly hold my breath (but man does it feel good after I dig at it for a while). With no surprise, my lumbar is also practically granite near my SI joint.
      Has anyone had any experience with this? I am desperate for relief so I can get back to olympic lifts. I can’t do olympic lifts or deadlifts without the right side of my thoracic lighting up and forcing me to stop and roll out and ending the workout. Any suggestions or tips would be immensely appreciated. No routine would be too extreme. I’m willing to dedicate whatever time and effort it takes to gain my mobility and performance back.
    • #72619
      AvatarMartin Repcek

      Sounds like my back was pretty similar to yours. I always got spasms on my right side and it felt like my traps and rhomboids were stuck together. For starters, you need to attempt to always maintain good posture. When I first found this site a year and a half ago the lacrosse ball became my best friend. I rolled around whenever I got the chance to work out the tightness in my back. Sometimes I laid on the floor and sometimes I would lean up against a wall. After a couple days of really working at it I literally felt 20 years younger. I was able to stand up straight and maintain a posture I didn’t thinkI was capable of. I obviously did more than just roll around on a ball. I also fixed my frozen shoulder on my left side.

      I think my left scapula was stuck to the ribs or something also. While on vacation I spent some time just walking around the resort making a conscious effort to keep good posture with the shoulders back, back and neck straight and so on. After about half an hour of walking around like this my left scapula spontaneously peeled away from whatever it was stuck to and I instantly had full range of motion in my left shoulder. It was the weirdest and most awesome feeling in the world. 
      Something else I used is a Finn hook. http://www.finnhookusa.com It works great for pinpointing those trouble spots in your back and for getting up underneath your scapula. 
      You will probably see some relief by also working on our shoulders, neck, and abs. I found that tight abs will cause me to sit and stand with a rounded back in the thoracic area. The gut smashing that Kelly and Jill Miller demonstrate are great. Standing backwards bends work well (careful not to pinch your spine). Hook your feet under a bar and lay back over a stability ball to really stretch your abs. Enhance the stretch by holding a weight and reaching your arms out. 
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