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Alumni Shoulder class

Mom_3boys's picture
Last seen:
4 years 3 months ago
09/22/2009 - 11:12am
Alumni Shoulder class

Hi Esther,


I was fortunate enough to be able to watch the recording of your special shoulder class for alumni given May 23, 2011.  Unfortunately, about halfway through the recording, the video of you konked out, and I was only able to hear your audio and watch the image presentation.  You mentioned during this time a few things I could not picture due to no video and limited audio description:

--you mentioned an exercise where you hold your inner corset and keep a tall neck, and then bob your shoulders up and down??  That is where the video klunked out.  It seems odd that you would recommend bobbing your shoulders up and down.  Fast?  Slow? 

--You mentioned towards the end of the class something about a trajectory for your arms going over your head while keeping your shoulders back.  What is that trajectory?  Can you reference something from the book?  I am confused what you were referring to.  It seems that you keep your arms externally rotated and then raise them on like a 45-degree angle??  Unfortunately, there was no video to be seen when you were on the floor on your back doing a demonstration of this trajectory.

I have been noticing over the last year that while I sleep, I tend to want to have my arms over my head when I am on my back.  The problem is that later in the night, when I shift positions, it seems that my arm weighs a ton and it is very achy from being in that position for so long (it almost seems that my upper arm ends up behind my ear due to the pillow holding my head forward but my arm wanting to be above my head, resting on the edges of the pillow.  It can take hours upon waking to work out the stiffness.  Do you have any advice to prevent this problem?

THANKS SO MUCH.  Your work is absolutely life-changing and a godsend.


charlenehannibal's picture
Last seen:
3 years 5 months ago
12/15/2010 - 7:51am

Hi there and thanks for your great questions!

Yes, the video shows Esther using her Inner Corset and the bobbing or jogging in place.  When you do this with the shoulders relaxed then they will bounce up and down with the rhythm of your jog and release the shoulder girdle and stretch the traps a bit.  It can feel very nice!

As far as taking your arms over your head, I would try and roll the shoulders back and anchor the ribs firmly.  Then lift your arms as high as you possible can without letting your shoulders lift up toward your ears.  You can also think of continuing to rotate the arms and shoulders outward while you do this to keep the shoulder blades down and flat.  This will help pattern your arms well for when you get things off of a shelf for example.

If your arms feel more comfortable over your head when you sleep that is fine.  However you may not have the type of shoulder flexibility to support this throughout your sleep.  I would either try and and keep the arms down by my side or on the belly instead.  Or, you could build up the sides of your pillow on either side of your head and let the arms rest a bit higher so it's less strain.  This might not be sustainable throughout the night, but it might be worth a shot.

I hope this is helpful to you!


Charlene Hannibal

Gokhale Method Teacher, Palo Alto and San Francisco




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