Acupuncturist In Chapel Hill, NC
One’s posture communicates more than we realize and posture also influences back pain and other conditions such as neck pain, headaches, shoulder, and hip pain, and others. To help you improve spine alignment, Dr. Lisa Oskardmay teaches exercises in-office or using telemedicine online patient visits that focus on stretching first followed by strengthening the spine and surrounding muscles. These balancing exercises will help you look stronger and more confident as they help to improve posture and reduce inflammation and spinal misalignment. Online video exercise tutorials provide added reminders on how to perform these important and helpful stretches and muscle activation poses.
Extensor muscles on our back pull us upright or even into a backbend on standing.
Most of us have no intention to do a backbend during the course of a day; but we end up doing the energetic opposite throughout the day as we sit, walk and even exercise in a flexed forward posture.
This chronic flexed posture causes a weak tightening of the back extensor muscles and other muscles. An anterior head tilt, slumped shoulder, lordotic back appearance results and postural distortion ensues over time.
To combat this problem, stretch and strengthen the extensor muscles. Stretch first to provide the muscles adequate space to contract. When our muscles are tight, the tiny fibers comprising the muscles are fully racheted and they can’t move any more.
Stretch the shoulder muscles by giving yourself a hug and moving the forearm across your chest or elbows overhead. Stretch the back and neck by bending forward to touch the toes allowing the head to hang. Stretch the back of the leg hamstring area by putting the foot on a chair and lean forward to touch the toes in that position. Hold each stretch 15 seconds or three breath cycles. After a good stretch, move on to strengthen the stretched area.
Strengthen the extensor muscles of the body quickly in one of several ways. On the floor on all fours, lift opposite hand and leg, maintaining balance and stability. Hold for 15 seconds then switch to the opposite side. Another option is to lay face down and lift head, both arms and both feet and legs from the surface. These exercises use the extensor muscles and deliver a body message to increase muscle mass in those areas, helping to achieve a more balanced, supportive posture.
Over time, increased muscle mass and strength in the extensor muscles will have the effect of seamless posture improvement. Muscles that are tight and weak do not function well. Focus on strengthening the muscles that are on the extensor back side of the body to improve posture and appearance and to reduce back and neck pain. For more guidance on how to do these stretches, visit this youtube video offered by Dr. Lisa Oskardmay, chiropractor and acupuncturist in Chapel Hill, NC. Call us at Acupractic today.