Tuesday, 24 August 2010

Question received re: Neck and Shoulder tightness

"How do you treat neck and shoulder tightness that has gone to the point of the muscles being almost as hard as rock?"

Interesting question.
I think the problem here is a postural issue leading to muscular symptoms.
If you work requires you to be always at a computer/laptop and hunched over for the majority of the day, then it is very common to develop neck and shoulder tightness and pain.

Posturally, your head and shoulders will be hunched forward, and if this posture is acquired for a prolonged period of time, it will place a lot of strain across your neck muscles (in particular, trapezius). Adding to the postural problems, stress and tension will make you naturally tense up in the neck and shoulder girdle, increasing the strain and tightness of those muscles.

Some helpful tips:
  • Take regular breaks from your computer/laptop (hourly) - look away from the screen, stand up and walk around, stretch your neck and shoulders
  • Ensure that your workstation ergonomics are set up appropriately and that you are sitting upright with a good chair
Computer Workstation Ergnomics

  • Perform regular stretches to your neck muscles by tilting your head sideways, rotating both sides, bringing your head forward and backwards (hold each stretch for 15s, repeat 2-3x)

  • Strengthening of the deep neck flexor muscles and the postural muscles around the neck and shoulders are also important
  • Some people have also found alternative therapies such as massage, acupuncture, acupressure to be helpful

1 comment:

  1. I have been having the same problem for ages. thanks for the little tips Roberta! =)

    btw, nice website!