I know I have talked about posture and pain before. It’s something I am passionate about and want to keep educating people on the hows and whys behind your posture and how it’s affecting your lifestyle. From sitting at a desk all day to driving in a car for 3 hours in traffic, it all connects. It all has some affect on you in ways you probably don’t recognize.
Let’s say you don’t sit at a desk all day. Let’s say you are a coffee barista or local grocery store clerk or nurse at a hospital who is standing on your feet, walking around 10-12 hours a shift. How do you think that feels to that person? Obviously we would immediately think “Their feet have GOT to be killing them!”. But do you know the most common issue I find in my patients who stand for their job? Shoulder, neck and hip flexor pain/weakness. Think about the position these people are in while they are working. Just like sitting at a desk, their shoulders are more than likely pulled forward because they are using their arms to work. Whether it’s writing patient notes, moving a patient, working a cash register, making coffee, etc. they are always moving in a “forward” position. This will eventually wreak some major havoc on their upper back which then leads into tension of the neck. If they are always in that position their bodies start to compensate for this movement pattern. Their chest becomes shortened because the shoulders are pulling forward and down, their hip flexors become tight because those muscles are under tension for hours on end, which in turn can lead to low back pain. Yuck! This sounds horrible right?
Next time you are at your local store, coffee shop, or hospital I want you to pay attention to the person helping you. Watch how their body moves. What do you notice? I bet you aren’t paying attention to their feet or how they are standing but rather how well they are doing their job, right? If they are scanning items at a register they are more than likely “hunched over” with shoulders and chest pulled down towards their belly button. This cannot be good on their body can it?
So, how can massage help? So many ways! We can not only identify body compensating patterns but begin to work with the body and muscles and manipulate the muscles to lay in a healthy position. The tension relief will almost be immediate, but the postural patterns take time to work through. Which is completely normal and OK. We can also provide immediate feedback on which muscles are tense and which muscles are weak. We talk a lot about lifestyle, sleep, activities and how they may be causing symptoms to potentially a more in depth and dangerous injury down the road.
We also talk about a recovery plan and how we can help strengthen AND release pain and tension.
If you are dealing with pain that you feel will eventually just go away let me help! I had a patient recently tell me they always just dealt with the pain. It never occurred to them that a massage would help relieve some of the pain they were dealing with. They were amazed once we worked through some issues and couldn’t believe how massage really does work. 🙂
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