Postural Respiration – Sacramento, CA

In 1848, a gold nugget was found in the Sierra foothills of California at a place called Sutter’s Mill that started what would be famously known as the “Gold Rush” where thousands flocked to find their fortune. Last weekend in Sacramento, CA at Sutter Health, a class of nearly all new to PRI or Postural Respiration students enthusiastically discovered new nuggets of insight into posture being delivered through air pressure sense into a thoracic wall and how that influences patterns, position and dynamic posture of the entire axial skeleton.

This course was what I would consider very homogenous since more than 85% of the students had never taken this course. Breaking down digestible pieces for everyone new to PRI can be a challenge since all of our courses have the potential to be a significant paradigm shift in reasoning and application.

The similarities of the attendees were that most were new to PRI while the differences included PT’s, a DC, an OT, massage therapists and strength and conditioning personnel . Not only were those professions represented, but a dentist was present who is taking a more broad or holistic approach applying PRI principles to his practice from what we mention as a stomatognathic perspective in Cervical Revolution and our Occlusal course. Sharing how occlusion, respiration and mandibular appliances integrate was an advanced discussion with him that was professionally stimulating and confirming!

As the weekend progressed and students began to sense changes in themselves after non-manual and manual techniques were practiced and applied, the enthusiasm for these first timers to PRI began to build. For one OT, her response to PRI was essentially “where has this been my whole career?” When new students ask which course they should take next or what is the process for PRC or PRT certification, it is a good sign that curiosity and motivation is significant!

One of the questions was how does a tricep influence the position of a scapula, especially the right side? How is it that it is like a left hamstring on a left ilium?

When the right arm is extended and in a fixed position, especially with an active left abdominal wall resulting in a left ZOA, the static contraction with a right arm reach has a positional effect resulting in posteriorly tilting a scapula much like a left hamstring has the potential to posteriorly tilt or reposition a left ilium. This can be seen in the non-manual technique, “Left Stance in Left AFIR Position from the Left AIC Pattern with Right Upper Extremity Resisted Reach.”  Or in a “Paraspinal Release with Left Hamstrings”, it can clearly be seen that the tricep is engaged positionally to posteriorly tilt a scapula. Both of these techniques are in the Right Lower Trapezius and Right Tricep section of the manual and since the long head of the tricep attaches to the infraglenoid tubercle of the scapula and then to the olecranon process of the ulna, not only does the tricep extend a humerus or ulna, but it also has the potential to position a scapula from a fixed position of the hand and forearm.

Many thanks to all of the students, including one of my patients who is a massage therapist and flew in from Salt Lake City, that attended with much enthusiasm and attention to this course. Thank you to Taylor Lewis, Ph. D once again as my faithful lab assistant. Thank you much to Anne, Erin and Susie at Sutter Health for providing such a professional location and facilitation of Postural Respiration and future PRI courses. It is the behind the scenes facilitation of location, food and a learning environment that enhances everyone’s next step into their PRI journey  and makes the job easier for  PRI faculty.

– Skip George