Mastering Scapular Control And Proper Abdominal Recruitment
BS, CPT, LMT, NMT
How often have you heard people complain of back pain when they are doing sit-ups?
Why does this happen?
Let’s start by first understanding the role of scapular control and how that effects core strength which in turn achieves lower abdominal strenth and a flat stomach.
The scapulas move in basically four directions.
These four movements affect how our spine and abs will be recruited during movement.
Scapular protraction moves the shoulder blades forward on the rib cage and shoulder girdle in a forward direction. The muscles working in this scapular exercise are the pectoralis minor and the serratus anterior.
Scapular retraction moves the shoulder girdle and blades together toward the vertebral column. The muscles working in this scapular exercise are the rhomboids and middle trapezius.
Scapular depression moves the shoulder girdle and blades down the back and involves the pectoralis minor and lower trapezius.
Scapular elevation moves the shoulder girdle and blades up the back toward the ear, like a shoulder shrug. Muscles working in scaular elevation exercises are the upper traps and levator scapula.
Here is a secret that most people don’t know…
If one can not forcefully protract the scapula, one cannot effectively engage the pelvic tilt muscles responsible for flattening out the lower stomach.
It is this pelvic tilt response that allows us to flatten the lumbar curve during a sit-up.
If your client can not effectively engage their protractors and use proper latissimus tension, they will forever have low back pain upon attempting a sit-up.
Watch the video below for some clips from Spider Training that may help you see the light during your next personal training session.