Forward head posture is frighteningly common in modern society, particularly among younger people. It happens when you spend hours a day sitting at a desk or looking down at your phone. Your posture is terrible as your upper back rounds, shoulders come forward and your head starts to follow suit. It hangs forward over your body, putting loads of strain on your neck muscles.
If you have chronic neck pain or pain in your middle pack, it could be down to forward head posture. You should treat this ASAP before it becomes harder and harder to correct. The good news is that it can be corrected, so you can reverse poor posture and see pain relief.
Here are three things to do:
Improve neck mobility
Those of you with a forward head posture will know your neck feels incredibly stiff. Tilting it back brings some relief, but you feel so much stiffness and pain in the joints. So, you can counter this by bringing more mobility to the joints in the neck and loosening the muscles.
The best approach is to find a chiropractor who will loosen things up and make spinal adjustments so your neck is in the right alignment. Alternatively, you can work on neck mobility drills at home while using your fingers to self-massage the muscles. This will free up so much tension and make your neck feel much better already.
Strengthen your neck muscles
Improving neck mobility can loosen tight muscles that try to pull your neck forward. But, you should focus on strengthening muscles that keep your neck tucked back in its proper alignment.
These muscles are called your cervical muscles and exist on the front of your neck. Strengthening these can lead to long-term pain relief, and the exercise for it is easy.
- Stand or sit up straight with good posture
- Place two fingers on your chin and tuck it in
- Force your head backwards with your neck muscles and keep the chin tucked
- Hold this tucked position for a few seconds
- Repeat for 10 reps
You’ll quickly feel the muscles firing and this also brings a lot of instant relief too. You’re basically bringing balance back to your neck! Do this a few times throughout the day while you’re working and it’ll gradually build up strength in the area.
Focus on better posture
Lastly, if you truly want to see long-term results, you need to keep doing these two things regularly. Not only that, but you should focus on better posture at all times.
When you’re working or walking around, remind yourself to have good posture. Here are some cues that can help:
- Retract your shoulder blades and pull them down
- Push your chest out
- Tuck your chin slightly and look straight ahead
Do this when you’re at your desk to avoid falling into the bad forward head posture for hours a day. If you’re more conscious of your posture, you have a better chance of correcting it.
Remember, it’s much easier to correct things early on. Don’t let forward head posture get worse and worse to the point where it’s almost impossible to put right. Use the tips above for short and long-term relief.