Aside from those who come to my office with neck pain due to a trauma or car accident, I would estimate over 90% of my patients with neck pain develop that pain, at least in part, due to poor posture.
With more and more people spending an ever-greater amount of time sitting at desks, the number of people developing serious neck pain and dysfunction is also increasing. A great deal of this pain could be avoided if people were to set up their desk space in a way that promotes and supports good posture, and if they were also adamant about maintaining these proper postural positions.
I find myself explaining appropriate postural positions and ergonomic desk set-ups on a weekly basis, so I decided to write an article and make a video about this issue.
Based on the video above, whether or not you have a desktop or a laptop, it is likely you will need an adjustable keyboard tray. Here is a link to one of my favorites. Note, you may be able to save money if the 17 inch version is big enough for you. You can also opt for the “standard tray” rather than this “adjustable tray” which essentially just gives you more adjustments for the mouse pad area (though if you have wrist or elbow issues, I would stick with the adjustable tray).
If you are using a laptop, here is a link to a wireless keyboard you can connect to it. If this one doesn’t suit your needs, just look around on Amazon for one that does. Here are general directions for connecting the keyboard to the laptop wirelessly.
If your chair is not adjustable in the ways described in the video, here is a link to the fully adjustable chair in the video. With all that said, if you read this post on the dangers of sitting still and fully supported all day long, you may want to try this swiss ball chair. You can still attain very good posture with this type of chair… you just have to work at it throughout the day, which is likely much better for your health. All the angles of the body and placement of the computer/keyboard demonstrated in the video still apply.
If you have any questions about posture or neck pain that are not addressed in this article or video, please feel free to contact me at any time.
So Formula One is coming to the great city of Austin, Texas and there will be many people flying in from out of the country to see the races. These long flights can do a number on the body and especially the low back. There are a great number of things that can contribute to and/or cause low back pain, but today I’d like to focus on one that commonly affects people having to sit through long flights.
I rarely see a patient with low back pain whose “hip flexors” are not at least partially involved in their symptoms. So what are the hip flexors? And how can they cause back pain? I think this is most easily explained with a video … Read more
I will try to keep the answer to this question as short as possible, but it’s one I feel very passionate about. I don’t directly bill health insurance or Medicare because I didn’t become a Physical Therapist to run from one patient to the next every 15 to 20 minutes and spend hours each day on paperwork. I didn’t become a private practice owner so I could become an expert at figuring out what treatment codes and billing techniques will keep my business from going bankrupt. I became a Physical Therapist to help people to the absolute best of my abilities, and I became a private practice owner to do so on my terms … not the terms of an insurance company or the federal government. Read more
The popularity of Manual Therapy has skyrocketed over the last decade both among consumers and health care practitioners. So what is Manual Therapy? The American Physical Therapy Association defines it as:
A clinical approach utilizing skilled, specific hands-on techniques, including but not limited to manipulation/mobilization, used by the physical therapist to diagnose and treat soft tissues and joint structures for the purpose of modulating pain; increasing range of motion (ROM); reducing or eliminating soft tissue inflammation; inducing relaxation; improving contractile and non-contractile tissue repair, extensibility, and/or stability; facilitating movement; and improving function.
When we look at the two words in the term “Manual Therapy,” I can see why many are defining it much more simply as “hands-on therapeutic techniques.” In no way am I dumbing down the term or its definition. I simply want to convey that it is being defined in a very broad sense by a growing number of practitioners out there; and that there are important consequences to this trend. Read more
Last Saturday, I had the privilege of working with the RunTex ATX TRAINING groups and providing some information about avoiding injuries as they work toward their inspiring goals. More specifically, I taught about hip muscles weaknesses that are predisposing factors to many back, hip, and knee injuries I treat in the clinic. We covered:
I occasionally get the above question, and the short answer is, “Yes, of course.” What people call a “crick in the neck” can come from a few different things, but in my experience, the majority of these painful scenarios occurs when the tissue surrounding a neck joint (called the joint capsule) gets pinched inside the joint. This can happen during sudden head movements, while lifting objects, and also when you sleep with your neck in an awkward position. The joint capsules have a lot of nerve endings and are very sensitive. When this occurs, the reaction of the muscles in the neck is to tighten up and protect the area, which is why a “crick in the neck” almost always has muscle spasms associated with it. These spasms add to the painful, stiff, debilitating condition that, for some, will go away within a few days but for many others will leave some level of tightness and pain for months. This can ultimately turn into a chronically stiff and often painful neck. Read more
So are you planning on “getting back in shape” in 2012? Like every January before, gyms, running trails, and “boot camps” around the country will see a flood of new people who haven’t exercised regularly since earlier the previous year. There are a number of things that keep people from staying active and sticking to their New Year’s resolutions. This is not an article about the psychological factors that people need to stay on the wagon. This is about how to keep injury from being your reason to quit exercising in 2012.
The good news is that many injuries can be avoided altogether if the predisposing factors are identified and resolved beforehand. For this reason I made a short video to help you do a quick “screen” your own movements to identify the potential for injury. Read more
You don’t need a doctor to tell you that sitting all day probably isn’t good for your health, but some interesting research about inactivity has recently emerged that I feel my patients should know about
Excluding the young athletes I treat, the vast majority of my patients have a job that puts them in a chair at a desk most of each day. Many of you are very health conscious, and you attempt to combat the effects of this inactivity by the hitting the gym or doing something active at least a few days a week; and that’s Great! But read on Read more
So now that we have a better idea of how fascial distortions can cause pain in the same area, I’d like to explore an example of how they can lead to pain elsewhere in the body. The patient I am about to describe is actually quite common, though I often see patients like him after unsuccessful visits to multiple practitioners. Why? Because the underlying cause of his pain was not in the area he was experiencing symptoms.
One year prior to meeting ‘Mr Smith,’ an avid runner, he had strained his right lower back lifting a heavy box. The discomfort from that injury faded over the next couple months, and since the symptoms were getting progressively better he decided he would not get checked out by a healthcare practitioner. Read more