Is your overhead range of motion or shoulder position trash? Try showing your pec minor some attention. Most folks go right after the t-spine and lats when working with soft tissue restrictions or lack of range of motion. Do these need to be addressed? Probably so, but you would be wise to not neglect a major player in overhead position and stooped posture.
The pec minor lies under the pec major, originates on the 3rd, 4th, and 5th ribs and attaches to the coracoid process of the scapula. It doesn't take up much space but it has a lot of responsibility and can cause major havoc. Th pec minor contributes to shoulder blade protraction, depression, and downward rotation of the scapula. It also tag teams with the serrates anterior to aid in forced inspiration. Whew, I'd be tired too man.
So what does this mean for you? Why is maintenance of the pec minor important.
We have established that the pec minor is closely interwoven with the condition of the scapula, ribs, and tspine and if any of these tissues get tight and short then it's going to be key getting your shoulders into stable positions. Pec minor dysfunction can present a huge problem, especially if you are sitting at a desk, cycling hours a week, or driving miles for work because now your arms have to internally rotate as a way to stabilize your shoulders to remedy your limited range. Taking this into the gym or sport where we spend time under load in these compensated positions your pec minor has to work really hard to keep your shoulder stable causing chronic tightness.
If you were to write a SOP for the elbow, the work flow would be insane. This guy is a workhorse. We rely greatly on this joint, flexing and extending is a big part of our day to day, not to include the demands in sport and in the gym. The thing with elbows is that people believe it to be a "simple" joint, that all it really does is flex and extend. There is a rotation piece that gets over looked.
Most dysfunctions tends to spread elsewhere, usually showing face in the shoulder or even down to the wrist. Now, there are many times when tissue and fascia around the elbow are the culprit, for example: tennis or golfer's elbow. Restoring and/or maintaining range of motion at this joint is crucial.
Banded Elbow Distraction:
1. Hook a band around a rig or pole, create tension by sliding your arm back.
2. Keeping your shoulder in a stable position, flex and extend your elbow
𝐂𝐔𝐏𝐏𝐈𝐍𝐆 THERAPY these are my thoughts about this recovery tool and why/how I incorporate it, as always, don’t let this be the only form of recovery
Some purposed mechanism ideas of what cupping is actually doing to the tissue, there is obviously some metabolic changes happening through suction force, creation of new blood flow to the area aka angiogenesis, evidence by the bruising circles. The cups are suctioned so that they pull on the skin and the blood, drawing it to the surface especially in areas where it doesn't typically reach all that well. Some people believe it helps to alleviate blockages of debris/adhesions in the body, as well as energy that is congested in the body.
For me, the effects of cupping have to do with the nervous systems, and modifying sensory input and perception of pain and how that translates to them performing better. When someone is experiencing pain, there are some inhibitory responses to performance in the body. If I can reduce the Pain to the area, Maybe I can help someone feel better in their sport. For some clients, they swear by it, they preach better range of motion and less tension.
How long do you leave the cups on for? Personally, I usually cut off around 10 min the reason for that, seems like most people will tend to get bruising- it isn’t necessary to have bruising, doesn’t make treatment more effective. Other things can have a role in how bad someone bruises: stagnation and tissue pathologies.
When should I get this done? for recovering and dampening of the nervous system, I would go post workout. This is def in recovery realm and be in addition to all the other boxes you should be checking: food, sleep, yoga, etc