Last Updated on December 3, 2021
Poor posture contributes to many of the chronic pains we experience on a daily basis. Imbalance in the muscles of our necks and shoulders leads directly to headaches, stiff necks, and numbness and tingling in the fingers. In the above image, the woman is shown first with an exaggeration of a common posture known as an upper cross syndrome and then with a good posture.
Many of us spend hours in front of computers or in other sedentary office situations. These types of work environments encourage a forward head position. As our heads move forward the muscles on the front of the neck become shortened and tight. At the same time, the muscles on the back of our necks are lengthened and weakened. The normal curvature of the neck changes, leading directly to headaches and neck pain.
These types of work environments also lead to the rounded shoulders seen in the above image on the left. The chest muscles pull the shoulders forward, at the same time, the muscles of the upper back and shoulder blades are pulled into a lengthened and weak position. When this happens we often experience pain in the upper back and shoulders. No amount of treatment on the upper back will make the pain go away completely until the front of the chest and the posture is properly addressed.
Fortunately, Inner Gate Acupuncture has trained to effectively apply the principles of sports medicine and acupuncture to help correct this postural imbalance. We use a combination of acupuncture to relax shortened muscles, massage techniques to stretch and tone, and postural exercises to correct the imbalances.
Correction: Last month we accidentally wrote that the masseter muscle opens the jaw. The article should have said it closes the jaw. Thanks to those who noticed and took the time to correct us!