Over the last week, I’ve noticed a lot of people complaining of neck pain, myself included, sometimes all it takes is for you to wake up. You go to get out of bed and feel that unmistakable twinge of pain shoot down your neck as you realise you can’t look to your left or your right. At that point you realise that your next few days are ruined. You start to wonder is your pillow hurting your neck? Or could it be that your neck is hurting your pillow? Last week we met a new client who had 30 pillows at home. He had been testing so many without a change in his neck. He thought he would give remedial massage a try. As a massage therapist, we can definitely help release muscles in the neck that tighten in the course of our day. Whether it be working at a computer or desk, looking down at smartphones or picking up the kids. We are often focused on the external activities to change but we also need to look at the way our bodies have reacted and ways we can improve our bodies before buying 30 pillows. When you are searching for a pillow, here are some tips to help your neck along the way.Adjust your pillow to support your head, according to how you sleep: Side Sleepers – you will typically need a thicker pillow, or even to fold a thinner pillow over. Your head should be in a neutral position, meaning that once you head is on the pillow, it should be positioned in the middle of your shoulders. Back Sleepers – Generally you will need a thinner pillow, no one pillow works better than any other so the best way to find a pillow for you, is take a photo of you laying down on it, turn it around, it should look like you standing up with good posture, if it doesn’t, find a new pillow! Stomach Sleepers – If you can avoid sleeping like this, this position applies the most stress to the neck muscles. If you have to sleep like this, you want the thinnest pillow or no pillow at all. If you are still suffering from neck pain after changing your pillow, consider changes you can make to your body with Remedial Massage. We are here to help you get more out of life and live without pain. Make a Booking Online or Contact Us with your questions.
Lately I have been getting the same question from clients, whether they be Personal Training clients or Remedial Massage Clients. Can you fix my hump? They are referring to the hump on the back of the neck. These humps usually form as a result of poor posture, mainly forward head posture where you poke your chin forward and slouch your shoulders. The hump develops over time and appears to be a build up of fat or tissue at the base of the neck. In most cases, this can be corrected through exercise, improved posture, remedial massage and weight loss. Many clients are surprised that there is a solution as they had been living with it, thinking it was there to stay. What should you do to reduce the hump?
- Stand up tall
We have trained ourselves to be very lazy over the years with much of our work completed sitting down at a computer or our leisure hours in front of a TV. We have forgotten how to stand tall. One thing I discovered through corrective exercise training is how light your body can feel when you stand or sit in correct posture. So pick a way to remind yourself, place red dots over your house, or every time your mobile dings, stand up tall. This involves bringing your shoulders back, chest out, stomach in, bum tucked and your chin tucked in too.
- Lengthen your neck
Ok so while you feel like you are standing tall, you are probably starting to worry about a double chin. Pretend you have a string pulling your head up. This will help to lengthen your neck and straighten the hump at the base as you start to stand in correct posture.
- Practice against a wall
A great exercise involves standing with your back against the wall. Using all of the cues I have given above, stand against a wall. Your head should touch, so should your shoulders and bum. There will be a space at your lower back where the natural curve of the spine occurs.
- Look at your nutrition and weight
Unfortunately your weight can be a factor in the formation of the hump. As you put on weight, it can seem to be worse in this area. It is not that the fat is choosing to go to the back of your neck but as you gain weight overall it will appear worse in this area. Start to make better food choices and drink plenty of water. We know when we are feeling down and yuck we choose to slump through our shoulders. As you feel better with good nutrition, you may feel better, more confident and wanting to stand tall.
- Remedial Massage
Of course Remedial Massage can help too by identifying any areas of muscular restriction causing poor posture. I can advise corrective exercises and treat the muscles causing the restrictions. If you have any questions or would like me to assess your hump, Contact me or Book Online to make an appointment.