Are you sitting at a desk or in front of a computer for more than 3 hours a day? If so, chances are that you may suffer from the “Upper Cross Syndrome”. This posture is linked most commonly with upper back and neck pain, headaches, and pain at the front of the shoulder.
Your body is an excellent adaptation machine – if you are spending a lot of time in a certain position, your body will become really efficient at it! So if you are sitting and slouching a lot, you will eventually end up with rounded shoulders, a slouched back and a head-forward position.
We see this so often at our clinics and are able to get instant relief for almost all of our clients through thorough assessment and specific treatment.
Fortunately, there are a few really effective ways to improve your posture and alleviate some of the symptoms you may be experiencing. Before starting, make sure you are safe and confident to perform all of these exercises by consulting with your doctor and health therapist.
Release the chest muscles
The pectoralis minor and the anterior deltoid are both muscles that contribute to that rounded shoulder position. This can lead to discomfort in the shoulder, as well as add tension to your neck. Releasing these muscles can provide immediate relief. To start, place a massage ball on the tender area on your chest just inside the armpit. Gently lean onto a wall/doorframe and allow the muscle to soften and release. A few relaxed and deep breaths can help a lot with this.
Upper back extension
Regaining the uprightness of your upper back is important in correctly positioning your neck and shoulder position. One of the best ways to achieve this is placing a foam roller/peanut ball on the floor under your upper back. Apply pressure by arching over the foam roller – make sure your lower back remains straight and support your neck with your hands if you need to. You may hear a few clicks – this is completely normal.
This is an excellent exercise to strengthen the upper back and shoulder blade muscles to maintain your posture. Start by grasping a light resistance band approximately shoulder-width apart. Remain tall in the chest as you rotate your shoulders outwards as far as you can without arching your lower back. Hold this position for 10 seconds and slowly return back to the start. Repeat 10 times.
Try these exercises out and perform them daily. If you are experiencing any pain or increasing symptoms, STOP and consult a qualified professional before continuing.
Hope this helps,
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