Let's take a moment to talk about posture and taking charge of your own wellness.
I see so many clients that are suffering from what I call computer posture syndrome, or bad company… When your head falls forward and your ears and shoulders start to hang out, a bit too close for comfort, a problem is not far away! Hell... it's already with you.
As the stress of hours spent at the jobs and on the screen grow, so do the conditions. What most people call their shoulders, technically the thoracic spine or upper back becomes the center of tension and begins to cry out in pain and discomfort. As it progresses, pain, tension, miss aligned posture, headaches, TMJ, tinnitus, and so much more arrive on the job with you.
As we slump forward, our head gets heavy, our neck get strained, our chest compresses, and our pectoralis minor tightens pulling us ever forward. This rounded posture effects our muscles, our breath, and our over all well being…..
Posture has been a focus of rehab, medicine, training, and massage for a long time. All over the internet these days one sees posture, posture, posture…Stick on back buzzers apps like Upright GO, bondage looking braces like Copper Compression posture Corrector or, Flexible Bear ( both amazing by the way!!! and well worth investigating). Just know, this posture focus trend can make one think "OMG my posture is bad, I need the perfect posture"……
As you know perfection is never going to happen and posture or any issue relating to the body is never a good or bad thing, it is simply an awareness thing. As we recognize things that our body is telling us we have the opportunity to work on change. Posture varies as much as each of us do, it is a great teacher of bad habits, a guide to becoming more self aware, and and opportunity to better our personal wellness program.
I work with people every day, one client comes in 6’3” 230 lb, the next 5’2” 98 lb, they both have the same muscles, the same organs, the same bones, yet each have different and unique variations. POSTURE is the same. Posture and its play on conditions causing discomfort depend on variables, time spent, load, tolerance, capacity, etc. As I said above there is no perfect posture and when it come to soft tissue related pain you can never blame one thing!
In order to improve, one must address ones posture from multiple perspectives.
First: My FAVORITE!!!!! Clinical Massage Therapy, when done properly, is a wonderful way to address the acute conditions of the upper back as well as the compulsory conditions that are so closely linked to postural, muscular discomfort. When the back is crying, the chest, arms, legs, feet, and head are for sure involved.
Please note: If you suffer from this computer posture syndrome, and your LMT does not work on your chest, quads, achilles tendon and biceps, they have no idea what they are doing and you should no longer work with them.
Second: After some massage treatment, you must take yourself off the table and into some exercises and weight training protocols. Its your body and your responsibility to take control of your own functional wellness. If your LMT is doing his or her job properly they should incite this important step. If they do not, it is up to you to find a personal trainer who can help you along with a training system to engage and strengthen your posture muscles.
When you find this multi-perspective system, your posture will improve, your wellness will advance and your education on how to take charge of making your self better will continue to grow.
Brian Riley LMT
100 Valley Rd. Suite 204
Montclair, N.J. 07042
917 968 2112