Exercise #158 – Relaxing and Loosening the Shoulders, Part 3

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…the award-winning blog of seated Tai Chi and Qigong exercises to balance mind, body and spirit for people of all ages and levels of fitness.

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“Good traveling does not leave tracks
Good speech does not seek faults
Good reckoning does not use counters
Good closure needs no bar and yet cannot be opened
Good knot needs no rope and yet cannot be untied.”

Tao Te Ching 27:1, translated at http://www.taoism.net


In this week’s exercise, we will be lifting one shoulder while dropping the other, alternating from one side to the other.   If you have painful shoulders or have had shoulder surgery recently, work through this exercise slowly and cautiously.  As always, consult your physician before beginning any new exercise program.

Push Up Sky, Press Down on Earth:

  1. Sit as usual with your feet flat on the floor, shoulder-width apart.  Sit up straight and tall with your back against the back of your chiar for complete support.
  2. Breathe in through your nose as you raise one arm straight up as high as possible without locking your elbow.  At the same time, press your other arm toward the floor, fingers pulled back so that your palm is facing the floor.
  3. Bring both arms back to your lap as you breathe out slowly through your mouth.
  4. Reverse arms and repeat for a total of 18 repetitions, alternating arms.
  5. If you are unable to lift your arms completely, lift as high as is comfortable but continue the exercise still alternating arms.  You may be able to loosen your shoulder muscles so that you can gradually reach higher.  The height of your upward-reaching arm, however, is not as important as moving your shoulders regularly so they won’t “freeze”.

Shoulder Well (GB21) and Outer Arm Bone (LI14):

(Illustration from Michael Reed Gach’s book, Acupressure’s Potent Points)

  • Click on the illustration above to enlarge your view.
  • Locate the acupressure points GB 21 and LI 14.
  • Cross your arms so that you can press on LI 14 with the fingertips of your left hand and the fingers of  your right hand can reach GB 21 at the highest point on your shoulder.
  • Press for at least a full minute as you breathe slowly in and out through your nose, gradually increasing the amount of pressure at each point.
  • Reverse arms and repeat.  Remember to begin with soft pressure and increase to a firmer pressure as the muscles begin to relax.

Don’t forget to drink water at the end of your exercise session or any time you begin to feel thirsty.  A Word of Caution…If you have or have had problems with your kidneys, please consult your physician.


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This week’s featured item from the Healing Tai Chi Store for the reader in your family:   http://www.healingtaichi.com/blended-none-B000U2C2CM-Paperbax_Hand_held_Page_Holder_Portable_Book_Stand_Bookmark_Kindle_Holder.html


Natural remedies:   http://www.all4naturalhealth.com/remedies-for-bursitis.html
How to de-stress your weekends: http://www.prevention.com/health/health/emotional-health/stress-relief-make-your-weekends-stress-free/article/5dcdab3b786bf210VgnVCM10000030281eac____
Exercise video:  

Click on the links below for sites that feature products for your fitness program or informative blogs to help you live a healthier life.

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Find brand name products for home exercise equipment at Exercise Equipment Super Store.


The exercises in this blog are intended for educational purposes only.  Always consult with your health care provider before beginning a new exercise program.



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