Now that we are officially in the New Year, many of us have turned our attention to our “New Year Resolutions” and while the studies have consistently shown well over 75% of these new year’s commitments will fall by the wayside before Valentine’s Day, we thought we’d share a resolution that IS actually achievable!
Have you ever experienced headaches, neck or shoulder pain? Who hasn’t right?
Well, pain in the upper body is so very common (although certainly *not* normal and *not* something you have to live with), and more than that, it is COMPLETELY fixable with some simple physical therapy!
Why not make 2023 the year you resolve to deal with your headache, neck or shoulder pain once and for all? You’ve got nothing to lose and a whole lot to gain.
Finally, a resolution you can stick to!
Just imagine being able to play with the grandkids, read that next great book in your favorite comfy chair or lace up those shoes for a long run or winter hike without the concern of upper body pain.
One way to start on that New Year’s Resolution of more mobility and less pain is to start stretching and increase your flexibility.
Our Two Best Stretches for Shoulder Pain & Headaches:
In today’s video, Dr. Jereme shares more about solutions for upper body pain and how your shoulder and their daily position may be causing you headaches, neck or shoulder pain. He demonstrates a few simple stretches to help loosen the upper chest and provide relief to your head, neck and shoulders. All you need for these stretches is a door frame and or two tennis balls and a sock.
The first stretch has you positioned within a door frame. Place one foot in front of the other as if you are going to take a step (it does not matter which foot as long as they are not together). Place your elbows at shoulder height against the door frame and gently lean into the frame. You should feel a gentle stretch across your chest and shoulder area. If it hurts or you have discomfort at this height, you can lower your arm or even raise them higher. You experiment to find the right spot for you. For a longer release of the tension in your tissues, hold this position for 2-5 minutes. For a quick release, hold for 30 seconds. We recommend holding it for at least 2 minutes to properly gain the release needed for long term relief.
The second stretch uses two tennis balls taped together in a sock or a myofascial ball. Place the sock or ball against the door frame. Gently roll into your chest area. Usually a good spot to start is at a 45 degree angle from your shoulder down to the midline of your chest. How do you know that you have the right spot? You may feel a knotted or tense area – that is the spot! As with the first stretch, for a longer release of tense tissue hold for 2-5 minutes. You can do a quick release for 30 seconds as well.
As Dr. Jereme demonstrates, stretching is good for your body and can provide relief to your aches and pains in your shoulders & neck. Read on for more benefits of stretching.
4 Benefits of Stretching
Stretching is a great activity to begin your pain relief journey. And what better time than New Years to start your wellness journey! To help inspire you, here are four of our favorite benefits to stretching your whole body:
- Reduce stress – Stretching relaxes the tight muscles & connective tissues which usually come along with stress. Extra bonus: this is a two-way street; so when you have less tension in your body, you will naturally feel less stressed too!
- Increase range of motion & reduce stiffness – Proper flexibility makes it easier to reach overhead, tie your shoes, get those shoes and socks on and improves your ease with hobbies & sport performance.
- Improving posture – Stretching helps keep muscles and connective tissues from tightening up and pulling you into a hunched forward position at your hips, chest and head/neck area too, making it much easier to straighten up (and easing back, neck, shoulder, headache and jaw pain!)
- Promote circulation – Stretching can help increase blood flow to your muscles, making it easier to nutrients to your muscles and take waste away.
These stretches are a great place to start. But if headaches, neck or shoulder pain are much too common for you and if pain that doesn’t go away sounds familiar, don’t wait, get help today! Our highly specialized treatments are safe and effective and the quality-of-life improvements are dramatic!
And if your new year resolutions were more about working out, getting fit, and staying in great shape, worry not – we can help with all of that too. Balance Within Physical Therapy offers one on one customized treatments to help your aches and pains without the need for medication and/or surgeries, 2023 can be your year to get back to being active & enjoying all your favorite activities again with your family and friends. Click this link for a FREE CONSULTATION with one of our expert Physical Therapists.
Don’t forget we have TWO great ways to save this month! For a limited time, new patients can receive a full 50% off their first session (wow!) and all clients can stock up bundle package sessions at a rate of $25 off per session.