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Posture…do you think you’re slouching too much?

How we sit and stand can make a difference to how we feel. As winter approaches we may find chest opening ourselves huddling in the cold, wind and rain. After a hard day it's easy to slouch in front of the TV, laptop, or hunch over our phones, perhaps slipping into habits that put strain on our body. Our bodies can adapt but these repetitive patterns can eventually lead to tension, chest muscles tighten and those of the upper back over stretch often leading to pain between the shoulder blades, top of the shoulders and neck.

Research shows that posture can affect mood too with upright participants showing less fear and higher self-esteem. Minor changes such as organising your desk for optimum posture can help, prolonged sitting not only affects our neck and shoulders but can also put pressure on the lower back. I have one client who is amazed at the difference made by using a rucksack instead of carrying a heavy bag on one shoulder. If you experience neck pain in the morning’s perhaps take a look at the height and number of your pillows, an adjustment can make a difference, the neck is an extension of our spine so ideally everything should be in alignment.

How to get a little relief. One simple exercise that lets gravity do all the work is to position yourself as the picture above. Use a bolster, rolled up blanket or similar, rest for however long is comfortable making sure your head is fully supported. Massage too can help relieve back, neck and shoulder pain, regular treatments are often helpful for managing the stresses of daily life. Using heat such as a hot water bottle can be comforting and act to relax muscles too.

See what sitting too long can do to our organs, spine and muscles!!

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