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Posted by on Nov 6, 2012 in Blog | 0 comments

Get Rid of Office Back Pain

The number one complaint I get as a pain management therapist is upper back pain. As I listen to my client tell me what is causing them pain, 90% of the time they are hunched over with their shoulders drawn forward and their head forward of their bodies which brings the body out of alignment. What people don’t realize is that the source of their back pain actually starts on the front of their bodies! When you slouch at your desk (or while looking at your ipad/tablet/cellphone) you are putting your Pec minor muscle which rotates your shoulders forward in a state of constant flexion. The antagonist (muscle that does the opposite movement) to Pec Minor is the Rhomboids. Every action as a reaction so your muscles in your back, specifically your rhomboids get overstretched, hence the pain your feel in your upper back and neck. Frustrated with the results that I was getting with massage alone, I became a NASM-CPT so I could educate my clients on using their bodies better and correcting muscle imbalances.

If you sit like this your back will always hurt!

Although every client is different and each session is tailored to them specifically, in general I treat them with the following protocol.

1) Assessment: Written intake form with health history as well as ROM(range of motion) testing and visual assessment for muscle imbalances throughout the body.

2) Active stretching and Fascial stretching to restore the muscle’s ROM and muscle length.

3)  Trigger point therapy and active release to break down any adhesions(knots) in the muscles and fascia. 4)  Functional training, Self Care for the client and stretching prescriptions so the client can stay pain free.

Pec Minor pulls shoulders forward.
Rhomboids retract your shoulders.

Three simple steps to rid yourself of pain in these areas.
1) Sit up straight! Your mother was right. Ideally you want your abs drawn in but not too tight, your shoulders relaxed and open and your head should be in line with your spine and level to the ground.

2)  Stretch your Pecs daily to bring the mucles back to their original length and range of motion.

STRETCH. Pec Minor Stretch with traction

3)   Strengthen your rhomboids to help keep your shoulders back and rotated down and NOT drawn up into your ears!

STRENGTHEN. Rhomboids: Swiss Ball Fly

These three simple steps done correctly will keep you pain free!

Gregory Beale NASM-CPT, LMT

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