T Nation

My Left Shoulder Is Higher Than My Right Shoulder

I recently had an x-ray done and my doctor said I have minor scoliosis and anterior pelvic tilt but he said it looks normal and it is nothing to worry about, I asked my mom to look at my shoulders from the back and she said that it looks pretty bad.

will strengthening my back muscles fix this problem through movements like pushups/barbell rows/facepulls/deadlifts/squats?

or do you have to stretch the muscles?

is it potentially dangerous if ignored?

this is a serious question bump


If you leave it, it will get worse.

I would search “rehab” (hips & Shoulders) and start training, realigning the shoulder and your hips.

if you don’t you will grow unbalanced and end-up looking like a gimp.

There is plenty of information on this site and the internet.

good luck.

[quote]Footyking wrote:
If you leave it, it will get worse.

I would search “rehab” (hips & Shoulders) and start training, realigning the shoulder and your hips.

if you don’t you will grow unbalanced and end-up looking like a gimp.

There is plenty of information on this site and the internet.

good luck.[/quote]

my doctor said it was nothing to worry about because it is just a slight curve, i have not experienced any imbalances of muscle so far and i have had my family take a look at it and they all said it was barely noticeable (shoulder height difference), although it irritates me. besides the point anyway ill have a look at it thanks

If this is a fairly recent development, it is probable that your “scoliosis” is not in the bones (as is the case with children who have severely twisted spines who are not treated early), it is in the fascia. Adhesions in the fascia (caused by anything from injury to chronic immobility/bad posture/whatever) can pull your structure out of alignment (the elevated shoulder that you are experiencing).

The truth is your body is a tensegrity structure–the skeleton doesn’t hold you up, the skeleton is suspended in a network of tensile structures. Without the suspension of the rest of the structures–specifically the fascia and muscles–the skeleton would collapse to the floor.

For a much better explanation, here is a video by Tom Myers who innovated the idea of thinking of the body as a tensegrity structure and its therapeutic effects: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rOQw-GR8A4o

The solution: Go see person qualified (and skilled) in Structural Integration (colloquially called Rolfing). I used to have fairly significant tilt in my hips, which led to a bent spine and thus a hiked shoulder. It didn’t cause a lot of problems, but I was starting to develop more imbalances and irritation in the scapula. Rolfing has a 10-Series that they put you through that cleared the vast majority of the tilt up. I still have to work to maintain it, but the tilted spine is gone and the shoulder has dropped.

I actually have a similar experience, one of my shoulders was way higher than the other and I only noticed because I was send pics to my nutritionist. Not long after I detroyed my low back deadlifting after a long summer of competing in strongman and powerlifting, it took 6 months before I was able to get over it, and for a time I couldn’t stand up without help.

What I know now was that it was primarily tight tight hips, as well as a shoulders rolled forward posture from playing hockey.

Here’s what you need. I’d also like to say to add in a simple rear leg elevated hip stretch, do 2 sets per leg for 30 seconds and repeat at least daily, idealy 3x a day… Do the warm up in the video also at least daily.

Also this is the upper body warm up, you can substitute the band stretches for just regular stretches, but do the rest.

As far as training, ditch deadlifts and bentover rows for now. also ditch all bench pressing and focus exclusively on your standing military. Do a shit ton of upper back back, I do 100 face pulls 3x a week, I’d reccomend 100 reps daily for at least a month, and you should have to work at them, not light. Just do 5 sets of 20. Lat pull downs and chin ups are good, and I’d personally recommend you do back work twice to three times a week. Don’t worry about what you’re doing, just do something and do it frequently! Also hamstring work 3x a week, I’d focus on front squats, high bar back squats, and rear foot elevated split squats, as main movements, then follow those up with hamstring work. ie, hyperextensions, gh raise (if you have access), kettlebell swings, even the hamstring machine is fine. You’ll notice what we’re going for here is to loosen up your shoulders and pecs, while tightening your upper back like crazy, as well, we’re loosening your hips but doing a ton of hamstring work to correct the tilt that is likely one of the reasons your shoulders are pulled forward. There’s a relationship between hips and shoulders that I just don’t have it in me to get into, but read NEANDERTHAL NO MORE, just search it, and read that series as many times as it takes for it to make sense.

Put together your own training template based on this, for however many days you want to get in the gym and I’ll look it over, if you don’t go to the gym, start… if you can’t, buy a band, and we’ll go over how to use that. If I don’t reply to this thread, just PM and remind me and I’ll swing by and take another look.

This should fix your posture in record time, mine was so bad at one point I barely had a chin it was so tucked into my throat and I looked ridiculous, now I’ve got a jawline and chin, and it’s glorious!

Best of luck man.