Ever had a headache?
Headaches are a common ailment that affect an estimated 80-90% of people. The most common type being a tension headache. Tension in the shoulders and neck is, unfortunately, something that a majority of people battle. This should actually be looked at as a symptom of other underlying issues. At The Massage Space, our goal is to not only help relax those muscles and reduce the tension, but also to help you understand why you’re so tense in the first place. The natural answer most people have is stress. “I carry my stress in my shoulders.” And this does tend to be true for a lot of people. Massage is a natural way to lower stress, which should help improve the situation. However, there is one big culprit for shoulder and neck tension that not many people recognize: forward head carriage.
Forward Head Carriage
Forward head carriage is a postural mis-alignment where your head is in front of your body. From a postural standpoint, your ear and shoulder should be stacked in a vertical line. Unfortunately, for most people, including Taylor and Obama, this is not the case. But how does this effect shoulder and neck tension?
Simple. As your head moves forward it is no longer balanced on top of your spine. This balance is key to not only reducing shoulder and neck tension, but also maintaining and improving neck mobility. When your head is in front of your body, your muscles work harder to hold your head up, thus you end up with more tension in your shoulders and neck. Essentially, the further forward your head is, the heavier it gets, and the harder your body works. Think of it like a holding a rock at the edge of a cliff.
If you tie a rope around a rock and slowly begin nudging it towards the edge of a cliff, you have to work harder to keep it from falling once it’s center of gravity has crossed a certain point. The same is true with your head.
It may not seem like a very serious issue, but when left unaddressed forward head carriage negatively effects your entire body. From muscle tension, to respiration, disc health, brain function, and nerve activity forward head carriage is more than just a headache.
Relieve shoulder tension and reduce headaches…
In order to resolve shoulder and neck tension, head and spine alignment is vital. Watch our video on Exercises To Relieve Headaches and Reduce Forward Head Carriage. Though correcting this postural mis-alignment takes time, there are some stretches you can do right now that will help temporarily relieve shoulder and neck tension. Watch this two minute video and learn how to do these stretches.
http://www.ihateheadaches.org/headache-statistics.html, https://cabotchiropractor.com/head-forward-posture/, http://claimingpower.com/forward-head-posture/