Improving Posture, Neck Width

  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Feb 15, 2010 10:59 AM GMT
    Sorry if these topics have been discussed already...

    1) I feel like my shoulders slouch and my neck juts forward (possibly from sitting at the computer too much?) when I don't make an effort to sit or stand up straight. Are there any exercises or stretches or other things we can do to correct our posture?

    2) What are some safe ways to widen the neck/build muscle in that area? Any neck strengthening exercises? I like the look of a wider neck on a muscular frame, and sometimes I feel like my neck is too skinny.
  • Bunjamon

    Posts: 3161

    Feb 15, 2010 4:32 PM GMT
    Your neck is looking fine to me....

    As for posture, for me it's more of an issue of making a conscious effort to sit in a better way, and making it a habit. Strengthening your back is also an option, but judging by your front I think your back is probably just fine, too. Get a better office chair, if you're sitting at your computer so much.
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    Feb 15, 2010 6:19 PM GMT
    when looking at your neck, also look at your "traps" they fill out the area between your shoulders and neck
  • geojock

    Posts: 141

    Feb 15, 2010 6:39 PM GMT
    I have the same problem. There was a good article here on RJ about posture that had some good advice. I also find that when I am at the computer desk taking a quick break every 10-15 to sit-up strait and fix my posture keeps me from hunching forward too much. I ve heard that sitting on an exercise ball at the office is great for your back and neck as it keeps you sitting strait. I don't know of any neck exercises you can do, that actually sounds a bit like one of those ideas that seemed like a good plan at first but ends up putting a chiropractor's children through university....
  • AlexGuess

    Posts: 364

    Feb 15, 2010 9:58 PM GMT
    for the neck thingy,
    get one of those pilates stretchbands, grab it with your hands and raise your arms, then stretch it in front of your head and then to the back of your head, and so on, its so difficult to explain :S
    For improving your pose, dancing its always the answer (;
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    Feb 16, 2010 4:31 AM GMT
    I have lower back problems and I used to slouch before I started back running about a year ago. I have found that if I make sure to sit in a chair that has a straight back (usually wooden one and usually uncomfortable) and to make sure that you are sitting up with your butt pressed against the back of the chair that it will straighten out a bit.

    I had a car wreck when I was 18 and ever since then if i slouch too much my back does not want to straighten out so I have made it so that even in my car my seat is sitting straight up. It will actually feel uncomfortable for a while doing this but after your back starts to correct itself you should find yourself walking taller and you will also pick up a very sexy little curve in your lower back that goes well if you (like me) have a little junk in your trunk as some would say.

    This may not work for you, everyone's body is different, but I have found it had corrected a little knot I had at the top of my spine from slouching too much when I was younger.
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    Feb 27, 2010 9:35 AM GMT
    I have read that tight chest muscles can negatively affect posture and can cause shoulder problems over time. There are all kinds of articles and posts about this elsewhere online. Regular chest stretching exercises is the recommendation.
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    Feb 27, 2010 11:26 AM GMT
    basically a lot of neck problems originate around the shoulder girdle and make their way up into the neck. the shoulder girdle is pretty unstable hence why so many people injure it, thie "instability" is usually compounded by muscle imbalances around the shoulder girdle - firstly most people arent aware of where their shoulders should naturally sit, focus on GENTLY bringing your shoulders back and down - the focus should be a GENTLE squeeze between your shoulder blades to activate your lower scap stabilisers (rhomboids/lower traps) which are commonly weak - by concentrating on this basic contraction you will learn how to hold yourself properly. next is correcting the postural imbalance - if the lower traps and rhomboids are weak its because the upper traps are tight and overactive, leading your shoulders to hike up. stretching your chest, upper traps, neck (GENTLY) will help, plus working on your scap stabilisers. by this i dont mean heavy weights / lat work etc, you need to work on your muscle ability to stabilise before overloading what they can do with heavy weight, which will only further the issue. exercises such as push up plus will work the serratus anterior, and something like the dart will help to stabilise and support everything and any neck issues should start to fade away.
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    Feb 27, 2010 12:11 PM GMT
    Seated rows at the gym.

    Pec stretches every 15 mins. at work for a week, then every 30 mins. next week, then every hour from there on out. Hands softly behind head, push elbows up toward the ceiling and gently pull back using rhomboids for 3 seconds, relax. Repeat 12-15 times. icon_wink.gif
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    Feb 27, 2010 1:40 PM GMT
    mach01 saidI have read that tight chest muscles can negatively affect posture and can cause shoulder problems over time. There are all kinds of articles and posts about this elsewhere online. Regular chest stretching exercises is the recommendation.


    Your rather yummy pecs (hi icon_wink.gif ) and computer use suggest kyphosis, and yes, stretching is one half of the answer. The other half is focusing on the back muscles which hold the top of the back upright (erector spinae, quadratus lumborum, lower Traps aka the middle and lower back). Postural awareness is important, but unless you have the back strength you can´t maintain the changes you´d like to make).

    SOOO
    (1) sort out your work environment so that you don´t have to bend your head down to look at the screen
    (2) make sure you stretch your pecs more than you work them
    (3) Make a strong effort to equalize your back muscles with the strength of your chest. Now I think of it, working your upper traps will also make your neck thicker.

    Now, if you would be so kind as to fly to Holland I would be happy to lay on hands and show you a few things...








    I´d also help you with your kyphosis icon_lol.gif