Just how common is neck and shoulder pain & tension?
At Bendable Body people come to us for a wide variety of pain points and injuries. Neck and shoulder pain are at the top of the list. Our culture of excessive time spent on the computer and cell phone has of course accelerated both neck and shoulder pain.
Here are some very common neck and shoulder diagnosed injuries. But perhaps you don't have anything on this list, except general neck and shoulder pain. We've got you covered!
- Frozen Shoulder
- Labral Shoulder
- Rotator Cuff
- Shoulder Impingement
- Swimmer’s Shoulder
- Pinched nerve in the neck
- Spondylosis, or arthritis in the neck
Let's talk about the joints associated with the neck and shoulders.
First of course you have the spine and neck, then you have shoulder joint and the shoulder girdle. Different muscles groups regulate each of these areas, so depending on what kind of neck and shoulder pain you have and how you experience it, will determine which stretches and exercises you should do and the best treatment of neck and shoulder pain.
- Shoulder Joint - Stretch the Deltoids (top of shoulder / Large Intestine Meridian) and Pecs & Biceps (chest and front of arms / Lung Meridian))
- Shoulder Girdle - Stretch the Traps (shoulders and upper back / Thymus Meridian) and lats (middle back and inside of arm / Appendix Meridian)
- Neck - Stretch all 4 of the above muscle groups!
Why do we need to stretch the larger muscles in the arm to help the neck and shoulders?
If you are wondering how to loosen up neck muscles and how do you relieve tension in your neck and shoulders... the answer is in targeting the unhealthy fascia that has accumulated in the muscles that attach at the shoulder joint, girdle and into the neck. When fascia becomes dense and unhealthy through repetitive movement or lack of movement, it prevents muscles from working. When muscles don't work 2 things happen: first the joints have to over work to make movements you continue to make and they eventually experience wear, tear and injury. The second thing that happens is the the dense, hardened fascia holds the muscles in a twisted or dysfunctional position which in turn creates a misalignment in the joint that muscle attaches to. When the joints are pulled out of alignment and over-working - you have the perfect recipe for pain and injury.
The traditional treatments of strengthening muscles or end range stretching fail to address the fascia which is acting as a binding substance in your muscles. Addressing the fascia requires a movement that is designed to do just that and that's what the stretching we do at Bendable Body does.