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Thread: Winged Scapula?

  1. #1
    Registered User Geddes-i's Avatar
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    Question Winged Scapula?

    Hello there people

    Lately I have been concerned with the fact that I may have winged scapula. To those of you who don't know what that is here is a definition from Wikipedia "A winged scapula (scapula alata) is a condition in which the shoulder blade, or shoulder bone, protrudes from a person’s back in an abnormal position. It is a rare condition with the potential to lead to limited functional activity in the upper extremity with which it is adjacent. It can affect a person’s ability to lift, pull, and push weighty objects."

    Anyway I just wanted your opinions on it and any advice you may have. I have no pain associated with this and I am able to pull and push objects perfectly fine. So I was just curious if I do have this issue, or if maybe I just need to add some muscle to my back to hide the shoulder blades more (maybe need to add more muscle over them?)

    I have added a few pics of my back for you to see, what are your opinions on my shoulder blades? Do you think I have winged scapula, or do I just need more muscle on my back?

    Thanks everyone, I really hope you can offer some form of advice!
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    Last edited by Geddes-i; 04-06-2011 at 03:11 PM. Reason: adding another pic
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  2. #2
    Back Hater __Iceman__'s Avatar
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    If you have it then it´s definitely not serious compared to just a google image search.

    http://images.google.com/images?hl=e...=&oq=winged+sc
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    Hm I don't know. Looks like your shoulders and scapula are uneven. I'm not sure if that's winged scapula but it's definitely some kind of postural problem or something. Maybe scoliosis, not really sure. I have scoliosis and my shoulderblades used to stick out a lot but after working out my back and practicing proper standing posture it has gotten a lot better. It's hardly noticeable for me anymore, you could probably only tell if I told you. I still get back pain though. Ask a doctor and see what they think. Seems weird that it was never brought up before because these things don't happen overnight and they should be doing posture checks at your physical and gym class at school.
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    Registered User Geddes-i's Avatar
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    Well I have been working on my posture lately and have also been doing Scap pushups a lot to try and balance my shoulders out (I heard this was the best exercise for the scapula)

    When I tense my right arm my right shoulder blade sticks out pretty bad on my back, but when I tense my left arm my left shoulder blade is perfectly fine....

    So yeah maybe I do have some sort of imbalance on my back, but there is no pain whatsoever...

    Thanks for the replies so far guys I appreciate it !
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    Registered User Geddes-i's Avatar
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    I was wondering could the scapula 'wing out' due to the trap muscles.

    When I tense my traps my winging seems to get pulled in and my back upper back actually then looks normal

    Do you think I should work on my traps to hopefully pull the scapula in ?

    Thanks
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    Medical Espada BitterBlossom's Avatar
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    Keep an eye on it. The moment any kind of nerve pain arises or weakness in the serratus anterior, trapezius or rhomboids - bitter wants you to go see a doctor.

    Also, none of us can determine what exactly caused it. There are a lot of other possibilities out there other than muscle imbalances.
    Last edited by BitterBlossom; 04-14-2011 at 07:01 PM.
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    Man on a mission take3's Avatar
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    used to think i had it, i dont, you also dont

    look up "rounded shoulder" - seems to fit your case better.
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    Man on a mission take3's Avatar
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    bitter - its not letting me quote you for some reason... anywho

    i turned down the flashyness on the 2nd pick and ya it does look more wingy that i thought but i'm not 100% convinced, with winging scapulae, shouldnt they stick out when the person pushes against an object?
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    Originally Posted by take3 View Post
    bitter - its not letting me quote you for some reason... anywho

    i turned down the flashyness on the 2nd pick and ya it does look more wingy that i thought but i'm not 100% convinced, with winging scapulae, shouldnt they stick out when the person pushes against an object?
    bitter deleted the post. Took a second look and decided not to jump to conclusions yet. The problem is, bitter doesn't know what caused the shift in the scapula. So bitter can't determine whether or not it technically is a "winged scapula" or not.

    One way or the other, OP needs to keep an eye on it. Muscle weaknesses can occur and unfortunately, muscle paralysis too. There's also nerve issues that can be caused. So the moment anything pops up OP, go see a doctor - don't play around with this, kk?
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    Registered User Geddes-i's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by take3 View Post
    used to think i had it, i dont, you also dont

    look up "rounded shoulder" - seems to fit your case better.
    Yeah man, that sounds a lot like me! It does fit my case better

    How did you fix this? Just posture exercises?

    If so what in particular did you do ?

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    Man on a mission take3's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Geddes-i View Post
    Yeah man, that sounds a lot like me! It does fit my case better

    How did you fix this? Just posture exercises?

    If so what in particular did you do ?

    Cheers!
    - rear delt fly (strengthen muscles that pull shoulders back) on the cables
    - make sure my head isnt stooped forward infront of my body when reading/at the comp
    - keep back straight whenever i can
    - stretch my chest alot

    i still have it but its not as bad .

    physio told me to lie on a swiss ball (feet on ground, ball on chest) with 2-5lb dumbells and 'flap my wings' (rear delt fly kind of action) and i did that at first before switching to cables..maybe you could start there?
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    Registered User Geddes-i's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by take3 View Post
    - rear delt fly (strengthen muscles that pull shoulders back) on the cables
    - make sure my head isnt stooped forward infront of my body when reading/at the comp
    - keep back straight whenever i can
    - stretch my chest alot

    i still have it but its not as bad .

    physio told me to lie on a swiss ball (feet on ground, ball on chest) with 2-5lb dumbells and 'flap my wings' (rear delt fly kind of action) and i did that at first before switching to cables..maybe you could start there?
    Yeah thanks for the quick reply :-)

    I am really working on my posture when sitting at my computer as that use to be pretty bad, so I have stopped my stooping my head forwards to the screen.

    I will try and keep my back straight as possible whenever I can.

    Also I am going to try and sleep on my back in a straight position instead of on my sides, this will feel weird but I think it may help straighten out my upper back.
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    I have it too OP, Mine is actually worse than yours. Its not an issue for me except when I go heavy on bench but is easily manageable if you remember to tuck your shoulder blades back while doing so.
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    Yo OP its not really anything to be CONCERNED about. You need to work on it but you dont seem to have any pain or problems with real life functionality. The only problem is that loading weight onto a poor posture will cause problems in the future and from an aesthetic standpoint poor posture is terrible.

    Unless you were born with it, the cause of your poor posture is due to lifestyle. If you spend a lot of time with your arms in front of you, ie. at a desk studying, working, browsing, whatever you will develop a problem. Its just a way your body adapts to make your life more comfortable (going completely against weight bearing functionality and aesthetics). Postural problems are very common and awareness of posture is a key ingredient to gaining muscle and strength.

    You need to STRENGTHEN WEAK MUSCLES and STRETCH TIGHT MUSCLES.
    Typically winged scapula is a result of WEAK: Rhomboids, mid traps, lower traps and serratus anterior. These muscles spend too much time in a stretched/elongated position.
    TIGHT muscles are: anterior delt, pec major, pec minor. You need to stretch these religiously.

    To correct these you need to spend time building proprioceptive (spacial) awareness of the position of your scapula, perform back exercises to strengthen the weak muscles, stretch the tight muscles, and perform posture checks/maintain good posture throughout the day.

    Push exercises will extenuate your problem. This is not to say you should not do them though, you should just do plenty more rows and pulls for back than pushing exercises for chest, delts, tris.



    CLIFFS:
    - stretch tight muscles
    - strengthen weak muscles
    - build scapula/postural awareness throughout exercise and during every day
    - for now weighted back exercises should be performed with scapula in good position for the whole movement (retracted and depressed/ back and down)
    - exercises without weight (eg. lying on your front and squeezing scaps to good position before relaxing) should use full rom.
    - your program should have more back exercises than push exercises.
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    Question

    Just a quick update, thought I would post another picture here too. What do you guys think is up with my traps? It looks as if my left one has collapsed in the picture. The picture added shows me standing in a neutral position without tensing.

    I think it is likely just a muscle imbalance, however I thought I would ask you guys what you all thought first...

    I await your replies :-)
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    Registered User Geddes-i's Avatar
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    Anyone else have this issue?
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    Originally Posted by Geddes-i View Post
    Just a quick update, thought I would post another picture here too. What do you guys think is up with my traps? It looks as if my left one has collapsed in the picture. The picture added shows me standing in a neutral position without tensing.

    I think it is likely just a muscle imbalance, however I thought I would ask you guys what you all thought first...

    I await your replies :-)
    Just do shrugs and they'll balance nicely.
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    Registered User Geddes-i's Avatar
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    I never really feel my traps with shrugs :-/
    I am obviously not using enough weight with them.

    Would I be best to use dumbells to get a better ROM?

    Also, judging by that pic do you think I have gyno? I am most likely being paranoid however...
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    I have the exact same issue except mine is worse!

    And i am playing college football.... so it does not effect you too much. i have no idea how to fix it and pretty much no one does.

    the only problem with it is that it may more may not be appealing to chicks. other than that it isnt a big deal physically.
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    Originally Posted by Geddes-i View Post
    Just a quick update, thought I would post another picture here too. What do you guys think is up with my traps? It looks as if my left one has collapsed in the picture. The picture added shows me standing in a neutral position without tensing.

    I think it is likely just a muscle imbalance, however I thought I would ask you guys what you all thought first...

    I await your replies :-)
    I have that. Looks exactly the same. It's just an imbalance, I only shrug dumbbells and it hasn't been fixed so whatever.
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    Registered User Geddes-i's Avatar
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    So it's not just me then. It kind of seems like my middle traps on my back don't work right. When I look at my back in a mirror and tense my arms the shoulders pop out from the middle trap area upwards.

    I always thought on just bulking up to cover it :-/

    At least I know I am not alone. I still think it is a muscle imbalance issue to be honest, it's just nothing seems to get the left side growing :-(
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    op i have it alot worse than you, i can take a pic if you want.
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    Registered User Geddes-i's Avatar
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    Yeah post a pic if you feel like sharing ;-)
    I want to see if people have a similar issue to me as they say they do

    thanks!
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    Psuedo Winging

    I finally got to a physiotherapist who did a full check on me and it turns out I have "Psuedo Winging" of the scapula. Apparently Pseudo-winging (scapular dyskinesia) is far more common than true winging and develops when the periscapular muscles do not work in a synchronized manner. This makes perfect sense and fits my case exactly.

    I was given a few exercises to work on for the next 4 weeks and then I must return to see if there has been any progress. I was also told that I have a big muscle imbalance and my traps tend to do most of the work that my scapula should actually be doing. I also must try and keep my shoulders back and keep my collar bone long and straight because it turned out that my shoulders were very pulled in towards the center of my chest. Also my pec muscles are extremely tight, and I was told this is also contributing to the winging problem. I must do the 'doorway stretch' to try and loosen up my pecs because they are pulling far too much. Stomach work is another thing I am told to work on because my stomach was angled up too much causing the arch in my back to be over excessive thus contributing even more to the wining problem.

    So has anyone else been told they have "Psuedo Winging" before? Also, does anyone know of any other exercises that are good for stretching the pec muscles because that is something I really need to work on!

    Thanks again people :-)
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    bump?
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    Originally Posted by Mr.NoPrint View Post
    Yo OP its not really anything to be CONCERNED about. You need to work on it but you dont seem to have any pain or problems with real life functionality. The only problem is that loading weight onto a poor posture will cause problems in the future and from an aesthetic standpoint poor posture is terrible.

    Unless you were born with it, the cause of your poor posture is due to lifestyle. If you spend a lot of time with your arms in front of you, ie. at a desk studying, working, browsing, whatever you will develop a problem. Its just a way your body adapts to make your life more comfortable (going completely against weight bearing functionality and aesthetics). Postural problems are very common and awareness of posture is a key ingredient to gaining muscle and strength.

    You need to STRENGTHEN WEAK MUSCLES and STRETCH TIGHT MUSCLES.
    Typically winged scapula is a result of WEAK: Rhomboids, mid traps, lower traps and serratus anterior. These muscles spend too much time in a stretched/elongated position.
    TIGHT muscles are: anterior delt, pec major, pec minor. You need to stretch these religiously.

    To correct these you need to spend time building proprioceptive (spacial) awareness of the position of your scapula, perform back exercises to strengthen the weak muscles, stretch the tight muscles, and perform posture checks/maintain good posture throughout the day.

    Push exercises will extenuate your problem. This is not to say you should not do them though, you should just do plenty more rows and pulls for back than pushing exercises for chest, delts, tris.



    CLIFFS:
    - stretch tight muscles
    - strengthen weak muscles
    - build scapula/postural awareness throughout exercise and during every day
    - for now weighted back exercises should be performed with scapula in good position for the whole movement (retracted and depressed/ back and down)
    - exercises without weight (eg. lying on your front and squeezing scaps to good position before relaxing) should use full rom.
    - your program should have more back exercises than push exercises.
    x2. Great post man. Was about to write up a nice post about all of this until I saw it, saved me time :P




    OP- Stretching Alone
    To stretch these two pectoral muscles, stand in a doorway. Make a "T" with your upper arms, bending your elbows, and placing forearms against the door frame. Step forward or lean forward until you feel a stretch. Hold for 30 seconds. Relax. Repeat the stretch making a "V" with your upper arms this time. An alternative to this stretch is to place one forearm against the door frame, with the elbow bent, and turn your upper body away from the door frame as your arm is stretched. Hold for 30 seconds, and repeat with the other arm.
    Stretching With a Partner
    To stretch your pectoral muscles with the assistance of a partner, sit with your hands clasped behind your head. Allow your partner to gently pull back your arms. Hold for 30 seconds, relax, and repeat. An alternative to this stretch, while standing, is to have your partner stand behind you. With your arms positioned behind your back and parallel to the floor, allow your partner to gently press your wrists closer together.
    To answer most training questions-

    Strength: >85% 1RM <6reps 2-6sets
    Power
    - Single effort: 80-90% 1RM, 1-2reps 3-5sets
    - Multi effort: 75-85% 1RM, 3-5reps 3-5sets
    Hypertrophy: 67-85% 1RM, 6-12reps 3-6sets
    Endurance: <67% 1RM, >12 reps 2-3sets

    --GCSU Athletic Training--
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