In the wake of the coronavirus pandemic more people than ever are working from home and away from their normal office environments. This often means sitting at a less than ideal working-situation. Whether it is using a laptop on a bed or turning the kitchen table into a home office most home work situations aren’t the best- particularly for our posture. We are hunched over, leaning forward, putting strain on our head, neck, spine and upper back. This can lead to pain but fortunately if we have upper back pain there are some steps we can do to find relief.
Part of the reason you might be feeling more pain is because of conditioning. Working each day at your normal office has conditioned your back and neck to experience a particular kind of posture and positioning. Now you are in a different environment and your muscles are having to adjust. An easy solution to this problem is working in normal work breaks to get up and stretch your muscles. Believe me! Your body will thank you!
Without a traditional office environment it can be easy to let the days get away from us. This makes taking structured regular breaks very important. Plan it into your schedule even if it is a simple walk to get the mail or take out the trash it will help to give your muscles a break and leave you mentally refreshed as well. Also if you notice your posture is slouching, shape up! After all, getting rid of bad habits like poor posture starts one change at a time.
Weight training can also be an effective tool for improving our upper back muscles. It helps the area be strong and more resilient when pushed. Here are some weight training exercises you can do with free weights:
As with any muscle pain alternating heat and ice can provide effective relief. The ice packs help to reduce swelling, inflammation and pain while the heat helps open blood vessels which then assists the body in its ability to heal itself.
The Zim’s Max-Heat liquid can help with its warming formula to relax stiff muscles quickly and effectively and its long-neck applicator makes it easy for hard to reach places in the upper back.
Massage is also particularly helpful when it comes to the upper back. There are several trigger points in the upper back and shoulders and a skilled massage therapist will know how to work the muscles to provide the most relief.
As always it is very important to talk to your doctor when dealing with pain and starting an exercise regiment.
What have you found to be helpful when dealing with your upper back pain? We’d love to hear your strategies.