May 2012

Posture: upper cross syndrome

upper cross syndrome

In this syndrome, the neck protrudes forward and the back forms a kyphosis. It is caused by the superficial neck flexors being too tight and the back extensors being weak. It manifests from our sedentary lifestyles. By drawing the chin into the chest and raising the chest we can abolish this postural deformity from our own lives.

Our back pain and posture website offers information regarding this syndrome.

Office Ergonomics

posture back

The figure depicted displays the optimum posture for office workers. Notice the inclination of the legs in regards the floor, the lumbar support, the level of the table in regards the hands and the level of the computer display in regards the head.

Legs - The legs must be perpendicular to the floor so as to reduce constriction of the hip flexors, the feet are facing forward.

Arms - The arms are level putting less strain on the flexors or extensors of the wrist and fingers.

Head - the eyes are looking down at the display, this is a good resting posture of the sub occipitals.

Back - The back is supports by a lumbar support so as to reduce pressure on the disks, caused by a flexed position of the back.

Posture is explained on the site Posture and Back Pain.

Sittting Posture

Screen shot 2012-05-10 at 16.16.21

The above 3 images represent the bad posture, over corrected posture and good posture of sitting.

The method to acquiring good sitting posture is to hyper retract the head and hyper extend the lower back as in image2, then bring the whole action back by 10% as in image 3.

View Back Pain and Posture for more information

Diagnosing back pain

It is important to know what type of back pain the client is suffering from, this can be ascertained by asking if they feel pain in sitting, lying and standing.

If pain increases whilst sitting, we know that it is flexion that causes mechanical dysfunction and extension exercises are indicated.

If pain increases in relaxed standing, then extension causes mechanical dysfunction and flexion exercises are indicated. The same goes for walking.

If lying causes pain, then extension causes mechanical dysfunction and flexion exercises are indicated.

The above methodology is described in Mckenzie’s Lumbar Spine - Mechanical Diagnosis

We focus on such techniques at Sports massage Techniques

Our modern day increases the amount of time we spend in flexion such as stooping and sitting down. Studies in 1972 and 1979 indicate that low back pain sufferers had a loss of lumbar extension in 75% and 86% respectively.

Back Pain Success

The success of back pain resolution is in any remedial interaction is not necessarily due to the therapists modality. Mckenzie “Lumbar Spine - Mechanical Diagnosis” describes the recovery of back pain due to its self limiting nature as 42% of back pain resolving itself within 1 week, 86% within 1 month and 92% within 3 months.

These are remarkable statistics considering the staggering number of remedial therapies on the market and numerous modalities individuals can experience.

It is in fact self perpetuating the popularity of all remedial therapies as it is highly likely the natural resolution of back pain coincides with any treatment the individual receives.

The “successful” therapy be it acupuncture, massage, osteopathy etc. is touted by the client as being truly effective.

As remedial therapists we must look beyond the “treatment ritual” and administer a true longstanding therapeutic intervention.

Sports massage techniques