You begin the day with the best of intentions. Your back is straight, your shoulders are pulled back, you feel light and energetic. And then you get a stressful phone call that sets you off… You know what comes next. You hunker down to write that report you’ve been putting off. And the next thing you know you’re hunched over the keyboard like Quasimodo pining after Esmeralda.
Very few people in our modern world are “hunch immune.” Commutes, conference tables, computer stations and La-Z-Boy chairs — they all conspire to reshape us in their own image!
And it’s a self-perpetuating cycle. The more you hunch, the more your pecs and biceps tighten up, and the more you get pulled into that hunch… Is there any escape?
Thankfully, yes. It’s simply a matter of releasing tight tissues periodically throughout the day, while simultaneously awaking and activating their “antagonists” — the muscles of the rear shoulder and upper back.
Here’s my favourite “hunch breaker.” It’s a movement that I use several times throughout the day:
Keeping your thoracic region open and well balanced is a key to improving your overall well being. You’ll breathe better by freeing up your lungs. You’ll look better — tall and proud — and people will interact with you differently. Your body language has a profound affect on your mood, so you’ll probably also notice an increase in optimistic and positive feelings.
Remember: Everything in your body is interconnected. Your entire muscular system is enveloped by a substance called myofascia. It’s a big web of connective tissue that transfers force and tension throughout your body. If it tightens up in one place, problems eventually start radiating out into other areas.
The chest and biceps region is one of those areas that you should constantly look after. So be sure to compensate for “the hunch” on a regular basis if you want to stay healthy and happy.
You’ll find more posture, shoulder and back exercises here.