I carry my stress and tension in my upper body – neck, shoulders, arms, upper back and have done so for years. Unfortunately – over time – it takes its toll.
I am under the care of a good chiropractor and now have a wonderful massage therapist too. I really noticed problems starting last year when I had to direct theater productions. Since we only had done two of them a year – it is not something my body is used to. And in directing during rehearsals and then in the four performances I use muscles that I am not accustom to – throwing my neck and shoulders in a foreign position and taking much therapy to resolve. This year before I had to have a ‘conducting week’ I made sure I had a massage – a really deep tissue one – actually it was a Thai massage which was wonderful and gave me extra movement, elongating some of the muscles I was going to be using. It really helped.
This last Sunday I went to a new massage therapist – someone highly recommended by a friend from church – and she was really excellent. I felt like I got the best information and advice – as well as free massage lotions (she makes her own) and other gifts. I probably learned more about the muscles in the neck and back – and what can happen over time due to poor posture and bad habits – (playing the piano, sitting at the computer) like we all develop if not careful. It has sent me on a search to help correct some of the problems that have already started in my neck and back – and she even suggested acupuncture to help with some of it – as that procedure has greatly helped her. I have even looked into using a Rolfer – and have been searching for information and testimonials from people who have received help by using this type of therapy and with similar problems to mine.
In the meantime though, it’s amazing what help you can find if you do a ‘search’ on the internet – and there are many exercises on youtube and other websites for the neck. One site in particular gave some wonderful neck and spine stretches – and another video used some light weights to help get that posture back in the right place – instead of the head pulling forward – as happens to most of us as we get older. Very good information – and I have been following this good advice and feel better in just a couple of days. Amazing!
Last week – as part of my birthday present – Greg bought me a new office chair. Not the cheap kind either – but one of those chairs with the lower back support. It’s like a dream to sit in this chair – and easy to sit taller and better when you have a supportive chair to sit in. It arrived yesterday and I was all SMILES when sitting in it to teach piano lessons – it made one of my students giggle 🙂 And of course they ALL wanted to sit in my new chair. It looks like something from Star Trek! Very cool!
I’m also back to yoga – as my massage therapist says there’s nothing better. I have a weak wrist so it makes it dicey – but it is so good for my neck, spine and shoulders – so I am doing them anyway – modifying the poses where I have to.
At night before bed – I have 3 neck stretches that I’m doing. Talk about a long good stretch! Wow. These are amazing. I am sticking my neck out – literally. I also now sleep with a body pillow – as per the suggestion from my chiropractor. It gives that added support to the hips and shoulders. He sleeps with one all the time – and if you want to know the best way to sleep – ask your chiropractor how he sleeps. I figure if it’s good enough for him – then I should be doing it!
Here’s to good posture and healthy ‘sticking your neck out’ moments 🙂
- Day 4 (cindyholman.wordpress.com)
- How do I keep from messing up my neck & shoulders in my sleep? (ask.metafilter.com)