Are you struggling with neck pain and headaches? Do your symptoms worsen throughout the week? As osteopaths, we are bombarded with patients experiencing these symptoms. Consider trying these hacks to help ease your muscles into relaxation.
- Monday a.m. start the week by spending 10 minutes mobilising; In a kneeling or seated position, start by rolling your shoulders forward and backwards 10 x each way. Then move on to gentle neck circles 5 x each way. Next drop your chin to your chest and let the weight of it stretch your upper back. Finish by standing, taking a big breath in as you lift your arms out from your sides and up above your head, exhale to lower them, repeat 5 times. Repeat mon-fri
- If you work in an office, pay attention to how you are sitting. Try to keep your shoulder blades in contact with the seat rest behind you. Every time you fall forward, scoot your chair in and sit those shoulder blades back onto the backrest.
- By Wednesday your body may need a rest. Consider lying flat on your back on the floor for 10 minutes once you return home. If you have a deep curve in your neck, you may need a shallow book or yoga block to rest your head on, otherwise, just let your head relax on the carpet / floor. Put on some music or an audio book or simply lie in silence for 10 minutes. Bliss! If it works, repeat daily!
- How are you holding your phone / tablet / newspaper / knitting? Be aware of how much time you spend looking down. Your head is heavy. Either reduce your duration / frequency or alter your neck posture so that you are looking more infront of you to reduce the strain.
- Finally, Stand tall. Instead of drawing shoulders back, consider your breastbone, lift it UP and grow from the crown of your head (the top bit at the back). Feel how your abdominals tighten – best cheats core exercise ever. This will help improve your posture, tone your stomach and give more room for your diaphragm and ribs to expand (letting more oxygen in, feeding all of your cells = more energy!)
If you can’t quite get a release, come and see us sooner rather than later as the sooner we see you, the less compensation patterns we’ll have to unwind = less treatment!
Disclaimer: if you know you have an issue with the mechanical elements of your neck or have low blood pressure, consult your GP or osteopath before performing these exercises. If you experience any adverse symptoms while performing these movements, stop immediately.