If you have been diagnosed with a shoulder issue, you may be wondering if there is a corrective exercise for when one shoulder is higher than the other. You may find that doing some strengthening exercises will help to make you feel a bit more comfortable and slow down the progression of a spinal disorder called scoliosis.
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Scoliosis is a medical condition where the affected individual has an abnormal lateral curve in his or her spine. It may be found in conjunction with other medical conditions, such as spina bifida, cerebral palsy or muscular dystrophy.
Most of the time, the exact cause of scoliosis remains unknown. It can present in children, adolescents or adults. The majority of cases are diagnosed at about the time the patient enters puberty.
What is the typical progression or scoliosis?
People who have been diagnosed with scoliosis may be told they need to wear a brace to help correct the curve in their spine. Core body exercises can help to strengthen this part of the body, which may make wearing the brace a bit more comfortable for the user.
While exercise is not a cure for scoliosis and shoulder misalignment, it can help to slow down the progression of the disorder. Wearing a brace regularly does affect muscle tone and exercise can help to keep the muscles in the back and shoulders toned and in shape.
Can Pilates exercises help correct a shoulder misalignment?
Some people who have been diagnosed with scoliosis have found that taking Pilates classes is helpful. This approach to exercise focuses on strengthening the core of the body through a number of deliberate motions.
When the muscles of the back or abdomen are stronger, they are able to provide a better level of support for the spinal column. In the case of people with scoliosis, the Pilates exercises focus on strengthening the pelvic floor and the individual's inner thighs.
What are some examples of exercises that could help correct a high shoulder?
A simple exercise that can help a patient with scoliosis or a high shoulder is for the client to lie on his or her back on a mat. The person's knees should be bent. This simple relaxation routine uses gravity to help the spine push down into the mat.
Part of doing Pilates is learning how to control one's breathing. Deep breathing that engages the individual's ribs and upper back is taught as part of this approach to exercise.
Some Pilates exercises are designed to be done while wearing a brace. One example is a push-up performed with the pelvis tilted and the knees slightly bent. Another one is a back stretch performed while sitting in a cross-legged position where the participant attempts to touch the floor in front of him or her.
Lying down on a mat and moving one's legs in a bicycle motion is another exercise that will help to strengthen the core without putting a lot of pressure on the spine. Pilates participants can also lie on a mat with their knees drawn up toward the chest. By rotating the knees from one side to the other, the abdominal muscles are stretched and strengthened.
Do I need to check with my doctor beforehand?
Yes, before trying Pilates as a way to correct your shoulder or scoliosis, it's important to check with your healthcare provider to make sure that this form of exercise is recommended for your personal health situation. If your doctor has given you the go-ahead for this type of exercise, ask if you should be seeing a physical therapist to get you on the right track or if you can go ahead and sign up for a Pilates class.
In some cases, surgery is recommended for people who are living with scoliosis. The exercises are not a substitute for surgery if this type of treatment is recommended. Instead, they should be considered as part of a treatment plan to help the patient live with this health condition instead of solving the issue.
Before trying corrective exercise for if one shoulder is higher than the other, it's important to be clear about the level of relief they can provide for your personal situation. The exercises will not cure the condition but they can help to slow its progression over time. Strengthening your back and shoulders can also make you feel a bit more comfortable, too.
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