Let’s talk about pectoralis major. Recently I taught an SMRT lower extremities course. During classes therapists/students finish their trades at slightly different times. There was a table in the room that finished with about 5 minutes left before I called time. The person working began to work on a tender spot their partner had on the anterior shoulder.
This tender spot happened to be where the sternal portion of pectoralis major, the long head of the biceps brachii tendon, and the proximal fibers of latissimus dorsi coming into its insertion on the humerus crossed. There was a rather large mass (for lack of a better term) at this juncture.
From across the room I could see the therapist on the table wincing. Her partner was telling her to just breathe and she was attempting to do that. When did we, as therapists and clients, decide that the only way to get relief from pain was to cause or be in pain? I walked over and asked what they were doing. They explained that they were done and so had moved to a different area. I asked if I could show them something different.
I palpated the area and found this rather large lump in the tissue. It was painful for the therapist on the table with only the slightest touch, I could only imagine how it had felt with her partner digging into it. I used SMRT, explaining to both of them what I was doing, to position the humerus in a way that engaged the precise area where the three muscles involved were interacting.
The therapist on the table suddenly took a deep breath and her entire body relaxed into the table. While I was holding the SMRT position, we were discussing which muscles were effected and why this position worked for this situation. I released the position and felt this mass again. It was down by 80% and the extreme tenderness that had been there only seconds before was almost gone.
Alleviating pain or dysfunction in the human body does not have to cause tremendous pain nor should it. When a client wants to experience the sensations brought on by deep pressure work, we should honor that. When we are working with existing pain or dysfunction, other modalities, SMRT being one of them, can help us to quickly and painlessly restore function to the area. At which time, deep pressure bodywork can feel amazingly good.
Learn one of the most amazing ways to work the shoulder girdle by joining us in Dewey Beach, DE from November 2-4, 2018. Register now at https://efullcircle.com/workshop-schedule/