It’s a trap!
“Honey, I’ve had a long day at work. Can you rub my neck?”
Most of us can use a neck massage after work. We sit in front of computer screens, with our head jutted forward. When we commute, our heads are not relaxed. We walk with a forward leaning posture, meaning our head is not purely stacked over our shoulders…
We put an awful lot stress on our trapezius muscle. It starts at the base of the skull and runs all the way down your thoracic spine (think bottom of your rib cage in the back). The “Traps” extend kite-like to the outer edges of your shoulder, forming a nice big trapezoid.
Fun Fact: The trapezius was originally “musculus cucullaris”, or the Muscle Hood, due to it’s resemblance of a monk’s robe hood.
In a head forward posture, every inch you extend your neck, you add 10 pounds of weight to your neck. The muscles that are supposed to support your head don’t, and much of the responsibility of head and neck movement become the trapezius’ problem.
Since the traps are such big muscles, the pain wanders about like a vagabond.
Yes, a good neck rub will help. It’s really easy to massage the neck and trapezius. You can get relief from a table massage, chair massage, Thai massage… it’s easy to do at home or standing in line.
Fixing it yourself isn’t that difficult, either. Make a conscious effort to keep your head back at work or while driving. Stand flush to a wall with your back and make sure your head is touching a wall. Stop carrying heavy backpacks and purses, adjust your monitor at work, and take a break to walk around.
If you are still sore, come on in!