3. How to relax your shoulders

Black Tea Concentration Pu-erh Tea

  • Concentration connects mind to body
  • Easy shrugs to loosen your shoulders
  • Focus on where you are
  • Concentration Tea recipe coming soon


Author: Andrea Cooper, Founder and Owner of PILATEA®


Concentration connects mind to body


Principle of Pilates, Concentration, builds the bridge between mind and body. When we don't pay attention while we exercise, our mind remains unplugged from our bodies. We move without moving forward. We move without changing.

Frustration is likely to come up of you are new to building this mind-body bridge. Shining a light on parts of your body you have either accidentally neglected or purposefully avoided, due to shame or injury, takes courage and a willingness to sit in discomfort. 


Easy shrugs to loosen your shoulders


During exercise, most of us unconsciously hold tension in our shoulders, including myself. Through my entire ballet career my left shoulder went up when I was really tired. A few simple shoulder shrugs are a good way to loosen that tension. Also, concentrating on the exaggerated shoulder movement will start the process of better mind/body connection.


Let’s shrug together

Sit tall.

Arms relaxed by your sides.

Start nice and easy.

Inhale, shrug your shoulders up toward your ears…

Exhale, depress your shoulders…

Stay sitting tall…


More effort this time.

Inhale, lift your shoulder up higher…

Pay attention to the tension in your neck and upper shoulders…

Exhale, press your shoulders down.

Reach your fingertips toward the floor.

Notice the stretch in your neck and upper shoulders.


Last time.

Inhale, shrug your shoulders way up toward your ears.

Feel where you are creating tension.

Exhale, depress your shoulders as far down as you can.

Lengthen your neck and enjoy the stretch.

Ok! Wiggle it out.


The next time you feel tension in your neck and shoudlers, sit tall, intentionally shrug, then drop those shoulders down into the ribcage where they belong.


Focus on where you are


Step 2. Concentration: Focus on where you are. Be brave enough to accept your starting place.

Truly observing a part of your life or a habit that needs adjusting or your own body can be completely overwhelming. It’s seemingly easier to focus our energy on appearing perfect than to have the honesty to admit something isn’t working and needs to change. By blurring our issues we only fool ourselves.

Change sprouts from a willingness to focus on where you are.  What you will find is an invaluable gift. Stand tall and open your eyes. What do you see?


“It’s the mind itself which shapes the body.” -Joseph Pilates-


Next Up

Have a good day. You are fabulous.


The information included in this website is not to be construed as or substituted for medical or nutritional advice, diagnosis, or treatment.  

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