Massage for Postural Problems by massage therapist, Tia
- Thursday, 16 August 2018
Our posture suffers the most from the daily grind, it’s something that we don’t really notice until we look in the mirror or someone points it out to us. Posture is the position in which someone holds their body whilst standing and sitting. It is extremely common to have a postural disorder, particularly in this new age of technology.
Let me paint you a picture; remember that day in the coffee shop hunched over a warm cup of coffee staring at your computer replying to emails, working hard; and later in the day, you noticed your neck was hurting and/or you were experiencing some headaches. This is from your posture.
This daily activity of life in front of a computer is one of the biggest contributors to postural dysfunction. The strain it puts on your muscles during those long hours in front of the computer can have detrimental effects. Postural dysfunction occurs when muscles that are overworked and tight pull on our skeleton causing it to change its structure. The most commonly seen posture issues seen today are an upper cross syndrome, kyphosis, lower cross syndrome and lordosis.
The upper cross syndrome is not as scary as it sounds, although gives us a very round-shouldered, head forward, hunched appearance. This is a result from our chest (pectoral muscles and anterior neck muscles) being too tight and our mid-upper back (erector spinae, trapezius, rhomboids and posterior cervical muscles) being too weak. Kyphosis is an excessive curvature of the thoracic spine and is generally a more chronic spinal dysfunction, this excessive curvature comes from the incorrect use of our postural muscles. This gives us the hunch back posture much like the famous Disney character from the Hunchback of Notre Dame.
The lower cross syndrome is generally caused by our gluteal muscles being weak and making our hamstrings do all the work. Our hamstrings are attached to our pelvis and when they are tight they pull on our pelvis which causes it to tilt and furthermore puts a strain on the lower back giving us lower back pain. When the glutes aren’t working properly, and the hamstrings take over and so do the hip flexors; these muscles also attach to our lower back but pull from the front of the spine. When referring to the lower back and lumbar spine we can also get lordosis which is an excessive curvature of the lumbar spine. This is predominately seen among pregnant women due to the extra weight on their stomach which pulls their bottom and stomach out.
Massage is a fantastic way to help remedy the postural issues. We use massage to help release the overworked and tight muscles and activate the weak ones. As a result, the muscles are then ready to be strengthened correctly using postural and specific muscle exercises. This is a long road to recovery but a worthwhile one. Postural disorders don’t get better by themselves, it is essential to act as soon as you notice there might be an imbalance!
For further information or to book your appointment with a sports or remedial massage who can help with postural disorders, give us a call on 020 3794 9760. We can’t wait to help you!
Tia, Remedial Massage Therapist at Fulham Massage & Wellness