On Wednesday, I talked about preparing myself for the rigors of travel. On to the trip!
Metro rides are perfect for hanging and shoulder movement. Stephen Goldberg, in Clinical Anatomy Made Ridiculously Simple, reminds us that “shoulder movement depends not only upon the movement at the Glenohumeral (GH) joint, but also upon movement of the scapula.”
A host of muscles including trapezius, pectoralis muscles, deltoids, supraspinatus, infraspinatus, and more help to stabilize the humerus bones in the GH joint, lift the arms overhead, and rotate the scapula in order to achieve a hang. Stretch, stabilize, and strengthen comprehensively with a hang!
Hanging in the Metro
How? Step onto the Metro (Mind the gap!), and grab the overhead bars, keeping feet on the floor and shoulders depressed (relaxed down). Resist the urge to allow the shoulders to hike up to your ears or conversely to pull them down towards your pockets. Keeping the chest in line with the pubic symphysis, begin transferring more and more weight off of your feet and into your hands/arms until you notice that one of the above alignment points begins to buckle. Congrats, you’ve found your edge! So hang out and get a little comfy for a moment.
The upside is that even on the most crowded of metros, the higher bars tend to be the least popular (most people scrambling to sit as if enacting a game of musical chairs). So there is usually room for a hand or two to practice your hang.
Not ready to hang? Try warming up your shoulders with a Yoga Tune Up® exercise, Halo Arms, to being priming your limbs for hanging. Note: if you have shoulder pain or hear clicking, crackling, etc please see your doctor or physical therapist.
Each day of our trip, out of the 16 waking hours, I swear we walked 6 -8 hours per day (Why don’t I own a Fitbit!?). Before retiring, my shins (and obviously feet) appreciated a little rub down using the grippy, pliable YTU Therapy Balls. These little rubber scalpels are stellar travel companions and help to soothe the tired travel weary tissues.
By practicing these tips and innovating one’s own (while paying attention to alignment), we widen the scope of how we get our “movement fix” and we actualize the change we wish to see in the world. Join me in a movement MOVEMENT and travel on!
Enjoyed this article? Read The Aches and Pains of Travel
Shin splints were a huge problem for me as a growing athlete (infact, I’m not sure I knew a kid who didn’t experience them). The roll method included in this fun take on metro travel would have been a great tool to know in that time period. The muscles of this area are challenging to stretch closer to their origin points, as the only mobile joint most cross is the ankle- just another reason everyone should have a set of balls- which would release tension consistently throughout these muscles.
I love the everyday exercise routine of walking up the escalator instead of riding or taking the stairs instead of the elevator. Subway cars present amazing opportunities for a full workout while you are riding. Subway surfing with the feet firmly planted and the knees slightly flexed is a great way to fire up the hip flexors and the glutes! Just make sure to have a hand ready to reach out and grab a pole nearby so you don’t fall over in the event of a sudden stop.
Thank you for the idea of the Metro Hanging ! This is perfect for training instead of “loosing your time” . As a runner, I tend to forget training my shoulders and arms. But they are so important too!
Thanks for the specific details on how to hang on the metro/subway. And as always, love the video! Such a simple and fast way to incorporate the yoga tune-up therapy balls into my day to help release tension without having to pay hundreds of dollars for massage 😉
Thank you for this awesome metro tip! I have so many clients who take the metro and will love this!!!
Also, I had never tried de shin rolling, I will definitely get started with this!
I enjoyed this ‘metro tune up’ idea though it’s unlikely I’ll use it until my next trip to the airport. However, I did really benefit from the link to Jill’s halo arms and suspect I’ll need a good deal of practice here before going for the pull-up 🙂 And the shin rub down is divine . . . well, maybe not at first but eventually. I’m planning to hike the Grand Canyon this October and will be sure to pack my YTU balls as they are weight well worth carrying down and up the canyon! Thanks Christina