Forward head posture occurs when your neck slants forward, placing your head in front of your shoulders. It’s caused by bad habits, such as spending long periods sitting at your computer or looking down at your cell phone. Forward head posture forces the muscles in your neck and back to work harder to keep your head upright.
When dealing with this “new posture” of today. I treat it similarly to treating whiplash. I address the scales which is a group of muscles located on the side of the neck. Originating from the neck vertebra, they run all the way down to the first rib. The primary purpose of the scalene muscles is to laterally flex the neck (i.e., to tilt your head sideways).
How to perform a Scalene Release
1. Locate your lateral scalene by placing your fingers right above your collarbone, halfway out to your shoulder. There you should feel the muscle attachment of the scalene.
2. Hold down the muscle and bend your head to the opposite side. …
3. Do this combination of movements until you feel the muscle release.
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You’ve carried your little one for 9 months. But, 9 months postpartum you are still having trouble losing the excess weight around your core? The answer may be this often ignored condition called, Diastasis Recti.
When you are pregnant, your stomach stretches to accommodate the baby growing inside of you. Your stomach will stretch where there is the least resistance. Which is usually right down the middle. In some cases, the fitter you were or the harder your abs were before pregnancy, actually can make it more difficult to snap back!
What is Diastasis Recti?
Diastasis (which means separation) recti (outer abdominal muscles) are the separation of the outermost abdominal muscles. When the muscles separate the connective tissue joining this muscle stretches sideways. The job of these muscles (called rectus abdominis) is to support your back and your organs.
100% of moms have some level of Diastasis Recti by the third trimester. Even men can acquire this condition from fad dieting or from performing incorrect weightlifting techniques.
Your chances of ab separation are increased when having a child after age 35, delivering twins/triplets, or have more than one child.
What are some signs of a diastasis? Feelings of weakness and back pain after pregnancy are common, so diastasis is something that often gets missed
Although diastasis isn’t painful and is not typically obvious until the postpartum period, it can sometimes be detected around the 25-week mark during pregnancy via a physical exam or ultrasound.
Signs during pregnancy is when the belly takes on a cone or dome-shaped look when you activate your abdominal muscles as you’re leaning back on the couch or trying to sit up in bed
Other signs include: • Weakness in core • Low back pain • A bulging belly • Poor Posture • Outie belly button • Constipation • Half football bulge when bringing the shoulders off the floor • A belly that gets bigger after eating and at the end of the day • Urine leaking while laughing or sneezing
A lot of moms say their core feels weak when they go to pick up something like a bag of groceries—it feels like there’s nothing there
Diastasis is not bad—it’s what your body is naturally supposed to do to accommodate the growth of your baby. Postpartum, it’s bringing the abs back together and restoring function in those muscles that are important.
So why should you care if your muscles are separated? Because separated muscles are weak muscles. Separated muscles cannot do their job of supporting your back and organs. To achieve a strong core, your muscles must be close together. The sideways stretching of the connective tissue causes it to become thinner and weaker.
So, what happens is this weak saran wrap-like connective tissue is NOT effectively supporting your belly button, low back, and organs. They are only supported when the muscles are close together.
What are the effects of a diastasis on the body? Back pain, abdominal hernias, poor posture, pelvic floor problems, gastrointestinal disturbances like constipation and bloating are all effects of a diastasis. They occur when the support system for the back and organs are the weak connective tissue instead of the muscles. Most women who have had a baby do have diastasis recti.
Steps for testing
• Lie down on your back with both knees bent • Place your index and middle finger directly above your belly button. • Raise your head and shoulders off the supporting surface and feel for any gap or dip under your fingers. Note the width and depth of separation. • Lower your head and shoulders back to starting position
Repeat this test 1-2 inches below your belly button and about 1-2 inches below your sternum.
Clinically, Diastasis Recti is defined by a separation > 2.5 cm wide, this is about 2 fingers wide. But it is really the depth that indicates how strong your connective tissue is which is what will keep your tummy in.
And the difference in depth when engaged which shows how well your TVAs are firing.
How to heal Diastasis Recti
Don’t freak out if you’re less than eight weeks postpartum—healing takes time. During this period, some women are lucky enough to have what is called a “spontaneous recovery,” meaning the connective tissue linking the large ab muscles knits back together or comes close enough to restore normal core function.
Most women will say, ‘I look like I’m still five months pregnant. I’ve lost my weight, and I’m back in my normal jeans, except for my tummy. Usually, it’s not baby weight. It’s the diastasis.
I’ve known some of my clients to wear corsets to bring the abs back together. Unfortunately, this a short-lived option because you still are not addressing the muscles of the core.
Before you get down on the floor to exercise and do 100 crunches a day. You should know that most common core exercises—crunches, abdominal twists and, when done incorrectly, planks—can all worsen the condition.
The best ab exercises for women with diastasis are the ones that target the deep core stabilizers.
These exercises tend to be low impact exercise that won’t even make you break a sweat. They are just as effective and more beneficial for your condition than you dong a 30min core class at the gym.
Things you should avoid: Avoid traditional crunches, sit-ups, and planks postpartum until your abdomen is healed from diastasis recti. These exercises can make the condition worse. • Strenuous exercises where your ab muscles are bulging out • Holding your baby on one hip, if it’s painful • Lifting or carrying heavy loads • Coughing without supporting your ab muscles
If you have any questions please comment below, and if this was useful for you please share this article. Don’t let other mommy’s wonder WHY they can’t regain their flat belly.
It’s never too late to get it looked at. There’s always something you can do!
Chances are you’re reading this while leaning over a table or slumped back in a chair. Your head is tilted forward; your shoulders are curved.
If you’re on a mobile device, your arms are bent by your side and your back hunch is even more profound.
Am I right?
The position you’re in is probably causing you pain, whether you’re aware of it yet or not. Don’t worry, physical therapists have a diagnosis for the headaches, neck cricks, and achy shoulders. They call it “Text Neck.”
Want to find out how you to can ease “tech neck” pain? Want to know the secrets of eliminating “tech neck?” Find out how: https://goo.gl/tTxrFg
Prevent Crossfit injuries by doing these stretches.
If you’ve spent any time doing CrossFit, then you know how high-intensity and high-impact it can be. As a rule, CrossFit is a mix between calisthenics, Olympic weightlifting, and requires a lot of different movements that incorporate weights, barbells, jump rope, and a host of other exercises and aerobics mixed into one brand.
Because the exercises are intense and require a full body of motion, there are injuries that can occur, even if you’re in incredible shape. The majority of injuries caused from working out is linked to a lack of proper stretching and preparing your body for strenuous exercises.
The reality is, stretching before exercise is just as important, if not, more so important than the exercise itself. You must make an effort to include stretching into your workout regime or you risk becoming injured. The two main reasons why CrossFit can cause an injury: the muscles don’t fire as they should or the user has improper joint mechanics.
In laymen’s terms: if you get hurt doing CrossFit (or doing a variety of other exercises), it’s’ due to a lack of free range of motion and your body wasn’t prepared for the repetition and/or weight you threw at it. Let’s take a look at different stretches you should do before taking on CrossFit to prevent injuries and setting back your workout routine.