Chronic neck and shoulder pain? Feels like a knife in the shoulder blade? Its not all because of the economy. Maybe you should stop slouching!
It appears that our parents were right when they constantly reminded us to sit up straight. Good posture is key to maintaining proper head alignment and reducing the constant tension in the large neck and upper back muscles. It improves breathing, aids smoother shoulder and arm movement, and it makes you look better as well.
Consider this; The most common headaches are chronic tension-type headaches. The description has more to do with muscle tension than mental tension. Improving posture can help reduce tension type headaches as well as relieving your neck and back pain. Lately I have been showing patients an exercise called a Brugger that I’d like to share in this newsletter.
Brugger Postural Correction Exercise
- Perch at the very edge of a chair
- Feet wider than your hips and turned out slightly
Chin tucked in slightly
- Breathe into your abdomen (so that it pouches out)
- Exhale slowly while;
a) turning palms out with extended fingers,
b) raising your breastbone slightly,
c) squeezing your shoulder blades together while
d) keeping your shoulders down
Hold posture for 10 seconds. Repeat once per hour, especially if you’re working at a computer.
If you find your spine resisting when your sitting up straight, you’re due for an adjustment. I’ll get the spine moving, but then it’s up to you to keep it moving!