Labor Day weekend has arrived… the unofficial end of summer. As you use your phone to find fun weekend activities, text friends to make plans, or check out social media, pause and think about your posture. Is your head hanging forward while you gaze at your mobile device? This posture has a name. It’s called “text neck” and it can lead to serious problems.
“Unfortunately with greater and greater levels of technology being added to our lives, we are sitting more often or slouching over a computer or phone,” says Dr. Jonas Marry, DC. “Generally there is a decrease in the lordosis or curve of the neck. This leads to neck pain, stiffness, decreased range of motion, and can even result in arthritis over time.” Dr. Marry adds having your nose buried in a phone, rather than being aware of what’s happening around you, can also lead to serious accidents in today’s world.
What’s a technologically connected person to do? “The correction for this injury is chiropractic care, specific exercises aimed at strengthening the extensor muscles (the muscles on the back of the neck), and a change in phone/computer habits,” explains Dr. Marry.
Here are three of Dr. Marry’s favorite extension exercises for the cervical spine from basic to most difficult.
- Use a strength band to perform neck extensions with gentle resistance
- Perform “Superman” exercises (prone position)
- Perform extensions using a Roman chair
“Lastly, turn your phone into the solution to your problem rather than the cause. All smart phones have the ability to set an alarm. Use this simple feature several times a day to remind you to sit up straight or get up from your desk and stretch. It will make all the difference.“