MED+ Urgent Care Blog

Quick Fix For "Turtle Back" & "Text Neck"!!
Tue, May 30, 2017

Forward rounded shoulders are all too common these days. When we see people with forward rounded shoulders, it is a sign that two other postural symptoms are also present. These are a rounded upper back, commonly called “turtle back,” and a forward leading head posture, now commonly called “text neck.”

All three of these issues make a trio of poor upper body posture that causes headaches, neck pain, shoulder pain and stiffness and chest muscles that are painful to the touch.

In today’s video, Kellie Bach will share with you three simple maneuvers you can do in a door jam, to relieve those forward rounded shoulders. Take a look.

The cause of forward rounded shoulders
When the pecs or muscles of your chest become shortened, or tight, the naturally pull your shoulders forward. This shortening of muscle length happens every time you reach forward, and is a natural movement.

However, when we keep our arms extended in front of us for too long — like we do when working at the computer, using a mouse, or playing iPad games — a new muscle memory is created and the chest muscles remain in that shortened position. They think it’s the “new normal.”

To restore proper upper body posture and reduce pain and tightness, you must lengthen the tightened chest muscles. This simple 3-part series will show you how.

Left arm raise – Stretch
Stand in the middle of a door jam, just behind its threshold. Raise your left arm and bend your elbow so your forearm is at a 90-degree angle to the biceps. Place the forearm against the outside of the door jam.

Step forward with your left leg until you feel a stretch in your left chest. Hold and relax into this position for 20 seconds and allow to pectoral muscles to relax.

Now, turn your body to the right, giving a deep stretch to the muscles. Hold this position and relax for another 20 seconds.

When finished, step your left leg back to the starting position and lower your arm.

Right arm raise – Stretch
Stand in the middle of a door jam, just behind its threshold. Raise your right arm and bend your elbow so your forearm is at a 90-degree angle to the biceps. Place the forearm against the outside of the door jam.

Step forward with your right leg until you feel a stretch in your right chest. Hold and relax into this position for 20 seconds and allow to pectoral muscles to relax.

Now, turn your body to the left, giving a deep stretch to the muscles. Hold this position and relax for another 20 seconds.

When finished, step your right leg back to the starting position and lower your arm.

Both arms raised – Stretch
This time you will hold both arms up at 90-degree angles and resting against the sides of the door jam. Slowly allow your upper body to fall forward. Hold the position and relax for 20 seconds.

It is important after the stretch time, that you step forward with your legs to come out of the stretch. Then relax both arms once you have stepped through the door way and tension is off the chest muscles.

NOTE: Do NOT press your forearms against the jam harder to push yourself back up, as this can cause inflammation or tearing to the chest muscles as you are attempting to contract them from a fully extended position.

Thoughts
This 3-part door jam stretch will lengthen your chest muscles back to their normal resting length. This will provide immediate relief to the pain that results from shortened muscles, as well as allowing the muscles of the shoulders to relax as they will no longer be pull forward. To be effective and to create a new (correct) muscle memory, doing this 2 – 3 times per day for 7- 10 days will offer best result. Then, just repeat as needed to avoid forward rounded shoulders.

Many thanks to Dr. Mark Wiley and Easy Health Options for this information