Posture: A Big Source of Neck Pain

Rounded shoulders are where the resting position of the shoulders has moved forward from the ideal alignment. This gives a person a hunched appearance. It can lead to neck, back, chest, and shoulder problems. Rounded shoulders can cause headaches, neck and back pain, and even nerve damage. With society becoming more plugged into technology, the risk of developing rounded shoulder grows greater. [1]

As with many conditions related to pain and orthopedics, posture plays a key role. Rounded shoulders result from poor posture, so it makes sense that proper posture would improve the problem. [2] If you have a job that involves typing for long periods of time:

  • Sit up straight in the chair
  • Do not hunch over to look at the keyboard
  • Keep your eyes straight on the screen as you are typing
  • Raise your screen if needed to keep you from looking down to read it

There are also a variety of corrective exercises and stretches that can help with rounded shoulders. One example is door chest stretches.

  • Standing straight in front of a door frame, place one hand on either side of the frame, just above your head.
  • Move one foot forward and gently lunge against the frame and hold the position for thirty seconds.
  • This will help stretch out the chest muscles.

If you are experiencing neck pain, schedule an appointment with a physical therapist for a thorough assessment.

[1] Szeto GP, Straker L, Raine S: A field comparison of neck and shoulder postures in symptomatic and asymptomatic office workers. Appl Ergon, 2002, 33: 75–84.

[2] Yip CH, Chiu TT, Poon AT: The relationship between head posture and severity and disability of patients with neck pain. Man Ther, 2008, 13: 148–154. 

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