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Sitting Posture – Are you practicing it right??

What is the right sitting posture?

In the previous article on posture, we discussed basics of a right sitting posture. This article will focus on the neutral joint position while sitting and cues to correct them. Now days, majority of people spend their time at work or home, sitting in front of a computer. We tend to ignore the fact that human being was evolved to be active, to walk, to run and not sit for 8+hours at a desk. A plethora of problems arises from prolonged sitting and also the way we sit. Health conditions can range from chronic neck and low back pain, fatigue, increased risk of cardiovascular, metabolic disorders and many more.

Interestingly many people are aware of these facts but they find it hard to do anything about it. It’s surely not that feasible or practical to just change your line/type of work. However, there are ways to reduce the impact of sitting on the body. The most common sitting posture mistakes we encounter at work are slouched posture, forward head, resting to one side and bad work station ergonomics. There are more if we look down further at the position of feet which can lead to poor blood flow and knee joint pain.




Common Sitting posture mistakes

incorrect-sitting-postures

  • Forward head posture
  • Neck rotated (commonly seen in people working on two screens and also if the screen is kept on the side)
  • Hunched back
  • Protracted shoulders
  • Arms kept too far from the body
  • Forearms not resting on the table
  • Side bending or listing at back (tends to happen when people rest to one side – specially on the opposite side of hand using mouse)
  • Posterior pelvic tilt ( which forces the spine to hunch)
  • Sitting forward (buttocks not close to back rest)
  • Crossing of legs
  • Knees excessively bend and feet kept under the chair either straight or crossed
  • Feet kept far from the body
  • Sitting for prolonged hours without regular breaks and enough movementincorrect-foot-postures





Continue reading – Page 2 of 3



Shoulder exercise – Let’s do it right

 Dumbbell shoulder press

shoulder exercise

Dumbbell shoulder press

Dumbbell press is one of the pushing exercises to train those big shoulder muscles. It is a great functional exercise for upper body. However, it is one of the most common exercise to develop upper body issues if done incorrectly. To get that right technique and avoid injuries, it’s important to understand about shoulder’s axis of movement. There are two axis formed at shoulder joint. First one is body axis and second one is the scapular axis(refer pic 1). Majority of people do all their exercises in body axis, which leads to injuries. Poor posture is another reason for scapular axis to shift further forward and cause injuries.



DB-press-wrong-2

Pic 1  – Red line – Body Axis                                Green line – Shoulder blade axis





The prime muscle we train with this exercise is deltoids. Other muscle involved is upper pectorals and triceps and rotator cuff muscle in stabilizing humeral head.

Common mistakes while doing dumbbell press exercise: Next Page



Shoulder Pain and Serratus Anterior

Shoulder Pain and Serratus Anterior

There is a sudden increase in neck and shoulder pain pertaining to many reasons. The most evident reason to this is our poor ergonomics which leads to muscle imbalances. Tightness or weakness of muscle around the shoulder or neck increases the load on its counterpart or other joints. One such muscle is serratus anterior, its weakness is usually targeted but the tightness factor is often overlooked.

Serratus anterior muscle lies underneath the shoulder blade and comes out on the sides of the rib cage. It is commonly known as punching muscle or boxer’s muscle. Serratus anterior has many functions in keeping a smooth and coordinated movement of the shoulder blade and arm. It helps in rotating the scapula upwards for arm to elevate overhead. It also keeps the shoulder blade pressed against the thorax and helps in bringing it forward around the thorax.




Serratus anterior weakness

Now since we know the movements it does around the shoulder, it is easy to relate what will happen if the muscle is weak. Reduced upward rotation from serratus anterior will increase load on other upward rotators, which is your upper trapezius muscle. Increased load on upper trapezius muscle will cause tightness and ache around the neck. Secondly, its ability to hold shoulder blade pressed against the rib cage also reduces. This affects the ability to pull or push objects and alters shoulder joint mechanics which can lead to problems like shoulder impingement.



Serratus Anterior tightness

Ever noticed when we are working on computers, the hand controlling the mouse is often kept away from the body? This is one of the leading causes of serratus anterior tightness now a day. When our arms are extended forward for prolonged hours it draws the shoulder blade forward, thus making serratus anterior muscle rest in a shortened position. Over time this leads to gradual onset of problems in shoulder joint as the joint mechanics gets altered.




Targeting strength and flexibility of serratus anterior muscle

Cervicogenic Headache : Causes & Treatment

Cervicogenic headache

There are many kinds of headache, which people experience ranging from migraine, tension or sinus headache. Cervicogenic headache is one type of headache which is often misdiagnosed and never gets treated the way it should be.

Cervicogenic headache, as the name suggests, originates from neck (cervical spine) especially the sub occipital area. The sub occipital area refers to the upper back of neck just below the occipital region of the head. Disorders affecting the neck muscles, joints or nerve can lead to this kind of headache.

Nerves which supply the upper neck also supply the areas in head and face. That’s why it is a secondary headache, referred/caused by a neck lesion or disorder.




Sign and symptoms

Usually the pain starts in the neck as a dull ache, which gradually leads to the head. Aggravating Factors may include prolonged sitting or lifting heavy things with a poor posture. Upper neck area might be tender to touch in people suffering from this condition. Apart from pain patient can experience stiffness in the neck, dizziness, nausea and light headedness.




Causes

Activities or posture which causes stress on the neck, especially upper neck can result in cervicogenic headaches.

  • Poor posture (slouched posture, forward head posture)
  • Working on computer for prolonged hours
  • Heavy lifting activities with poor posture
  • Trauma (e.g. whiplash)
  • Increased upper body stiffness/ limited movement
  • Poor breathing technique
  • Stress
  • Improper work desk setup




Treatment

Get a proper diagnosis done by a physiotherapist or an orthopedic

In most of the cases conservative treatment does the trick.

  • Joint mobilization
  • Soft tissue massage
  • Posture correction
  • Correcting muscle imbalance around neck and upper body area
  • Stretching exercises for neck and pectorals
  • Strengthening exercises for neck and upper back muscles
  • Deep neck flexors retraining
  • Improving thoracic/rib cage mobility
  • Activity modification
  • Correcting workplace setup and sleeping position
  • Improving breathing technique
  • Tapping

Rehab Mantra
Stay Fit. Love Life

READ OTHER ARTICLES

Sitting Posture – Are you practicing it right??

What is the right sitting posture?

In the previous article on posture, we discussed basics of a right sitting posture. This article will focus on the neutral joint position while sitting and cues to correct them. Now days, majority of people spend their time at work or home, sitting in front of a computer. We tend to ignore the fact that human being was evolved to be active, to walk, to run and not sit for 8+hours at a desk. A plethora of problems arises from prolonged sitting and also the way we sit. Health conditions can range from chronic neck and low back pain, fatigue, increased risk of cardiovascular, metabolic disorders and many more.

Interestingly many people are aware of these facts but they find it hard to do anything about it. It’s surely not that feasible or practical to just change your line/type of work. However, there are ways to reduce the impact of sitting on the body. The most common sitting posture mistakes we encounter at work are slouched posture, forward head, resting to one side and bad work station ergonomics. There are more if we look down further at the position of feet which can lead to poor blood flow and knee joint pain.




Common Sitting posture mistakes

incorrect-sitting-postures

  • Forward head posture
  • Neck rotated (commonly seen in people working on two screens and also if the screen is kept on the side)
  • Hunched back
  • Protracted shoulders
  • Arms kept too far from the body
  • Forearms not resting on the table
  • Side bending or listing at back (tends to happen when people rest to one side – specially on the opposite side of hand using mouse)
  • Posterior pelvic tilt ( which forces the spine to hunch)
  • Sitting forward (buttocks not close to back rest)
  • Crossing of legs
  • Knees excessively bend and feet kept under the chair either straight or crossed
  • Feet kept far from the body
  • Sitting for prolonged hours without regular breaks and enough movementincorrect-foot-postures





Continue reading – Page 2 of 3



Shoulder exercise – Let’s do it right

 Dumbbell shoulder press

shoulder exercise

Dumbbell shoulder press

Dumbbell press is one of the pushing exercises to train those big shoulder muscles. It is a great functional exercise for upper body. However, it is one of the most common exercise to develop upper body issues if done incorrectly. To get that right technique and avoid injuries, it’s important to understand about shoulder’s axis of movement. There are two axis formed at shoulder joint. First one is body axis and second one is the scapular axis(refer pic 1). Majority of people do all their exercises in body axis, which leads to injuries. Poor posture is another reason for scapular axis to shift further forward and cause injuries.



DB-press-wrong-2

Pic 1  – Red line – Body Axis                                Green line – Shoulder blade axis





The prime muscle we train with this exercise is deltoids. Other muscle involved is upper pectorals and triceps and rotator cuff muscle in stabilizing humeral head.

Common mistakes while doing dumbbell press exercise: Next Page



Shoulder Pain and Serratus Anterior

Shoulder Pain and Serratus Anterior

There is a sudden increase in neck and shoulder pain pertaining to many reasons. The most evident reason to this is our poor ergonomics which leads to muscle imbalances. Tightness or weakness of muscle around the shoulder or neck increases the load on its counterpart or other joints. One such muscle is serratus anterior, its weakness is usually targeted but the tightness factor is often overlooked.

Serratus anterior muscle lies underneath the shoulder blade and comes out on the sides of the rib cage. It is commonly known as punching muscle or boxer’s muscle. Serratus anterior has many functions in keeping a smooth and coordinated movement of the shoulder blade and arm. It helps in rotating the scapula upwards for arm to elevate overhead. It also keeps the shoulder blade pressed against the thorax and helps in bringing it forward around the thorax.




Serratus anterior weakness

Now since we know the movements it does around the shoulder, it is easy to relate what will happen if the muscle is weak. Reduced upward rotation from serratus anterior will increase load on other upward rotators, which is your upper trapezius muscle. Increased load on upper trapezius muscle will cause tightness and ache around the neck. Secondly, its ability to hold shoulder blade pressed against the rib cage also reduces. This affects the ability to pull or push objects and alters shoulder joint mechanics which can lead to problems like shoulder impingement.



Serratus Anterior tightness

Ever noticed when we are working on computers, the hand controlling the mouse is often kept away from the body? This is one of the leading causes of serratus anterior tightness now a day. When our arms are extended forward for prolonged hours it draws the shoulder blade forward, thus making serratus anterior muscle rest in a shortened position. Over time this leads to gradual onset of problems in shoulder joint as the joint mechanics gets altered.




Targeting strength and flexibility of serratus anterior muscle

Cervicogenic Headache : Causes & Treatment

Cervicogenic headache

There are many kinds of headache, which people experience ranging from migraine, tension or sinus headache. Cervicogenic headache is one type of headache which is often misdiagnosed and never gets treated the way it should be.

Cervicogenic headache, as the name suggests, originates from neck (cervical spine) especially the sub occipital area. The sub occipital area refers to the upper back of neck just below the occipital region of the head. Disorders affecting the neck muscles, joints or nerve can lead to this kind of headache.

Nerves which supply the upper neck also supply the areas in head and face. That’s why it is a secondary headache, referred/caused by a neck lesion or disorder.




Sign and symptoms

Usually the pain starts in the neck as a dull ache, which gradually leads to the head. Aggravating Factors may include prolonged sitting or lifting heavy things with a poor posture. Upper neck area might be tender to touch in people suffering from this condition. Apart from pain patient can experience stiffness in the neck, dizziness, nausea and light headedness.




Causes

Activities or posture which causes stress on the neck, especially upper neck can result in cervicogenic headaches.

  • Poor posture (slouched posture, forward head posture)
  • Working on computer for prolonged hours
  • Heavy lifting activities with poor posture
  • Trauma (e.g. whiplash)
  • Increased upper body stiffness/ limited movement
  • Poor breathing technique
  • Stress
  • Improper work desk setup




Treatment

Get a proper diagnosis done by a physiotherapist or an orthopedic

In most of the cases conservative treatment does the trick.

  • Joint mobilization
  • Soft tissue massage
  • Posture correction
  • Correcting muscle imbalance around neck and upper body area
  • Stretching exercises for neck and pectorals
  • Strengthening exercises for neck and upper back muscles
  • Deep neck flexors retraining
  • Improving thoracic/rib cage mobility
  • Activity modification
  • Correcting workplace setup and sleeping position
  • Improving breathing technique
  • Tapping

Rehab Mantra
Stay Fit. Love Life

READ OTHER ARTICLES

Shoulder Impingement : Simplified

Shoulder Impingement – Causes & Treatment

The term impingement itself explains some kind of pinching or compression in shoulder joint. Most common location of shoulder impingement is under the sub acromion arch followed by less common sub coracoid impingement.

Sub acromion arch is formed by clavicle (collar bone) and acromion process of scapulae (shoulder blade). The space below sub acromion arch comprises of one of the rotator cuff muscle (supraspinatus) and a bursae which sits over the head of humerus (arm bone). If the space between sub acromion arch and head of humerus decrease it causes compression and irritation of supraspinatus muscle and the bursae.

 

It is more common in middle aged group but can also be seen in active sporting individuals at young age. Usually, the symptoms are pain, stiffness and clicking. Pain is worse with overhead arm movements and sleeping on the affected shoulder. Location of pain is around tip of the shoulder and might refer down till mid arm on outer side. Hand behind back might also be painful in some cases.

In sub coracoid impingement the affected muscle is another rotator cuff muscle (subscapularis). Location of symptoms is more in front of the shoulder as compared to subacromion impingement.

Causes

  • Poor posture – protracted shoulders, thoracic kyphosis (hunch back)
  • Stiff and decreased mobility in thoracic area
  • Altered position and movement of scapula
  • Tight and overactive pectorals muscles and deltoids
  • Weak rotator cuff muscles and scapular stabilizers
  • Repetitive overhead movements
  • Poor sporting technique
  • Involvement in activities performed away from body (painting , desk work)
  • Type II and Type III acromion (Curved or hooked acromion)
  • Development of  a bone spur on front or side of acromion

 

 Conservative treatment

  • Posture correction
  • Ergonomic advice – workplace setup
  • Strengthening scapular stabilizers and rotator cuff muscles
  • Stretching exercises for tight muscles(e.g.: pectorals)
  • Soft tissue mobilization
  • Joint mobilization
  • Sporting technique correction
  • Improving overall core strength and control to reduce stress on shoulder in activities like throwing, smashing.
  • Taping
  • Icing to reduce inflammation
  • Correcting sleeping position

 

Rehab Mantra
Love Life. Stay Fit

READ OTHER ARTICLES