Computer placed under desk, monitor moved from comer, and platform removed. Monitor at or below eye level. Use of phone headset to relieve neck strain. Chair has proper back support and armrests to remove weight of arms from neck and shoulders. Legs supported by footrest under desk.
MASSAGE OF NECK MUSCLES
Massage is an important modality in the treatment of painful neck conditions. The soothing effects of gentle massage can help relax tense muscles. Neck extensor muscles often become short from a faulty forward head posture. Massage, along with appropriate exercises, can be used to help relax and stretch the tight muscles and restore normal range of motion. (See Chapter 1, p. 36 regarding massage.)
The photographs below show the various positions for effectively applying massage to help relieve neck tension and stiffness. The subject is seated on a stool beside the treatment table. Pillows on the table are adjusted to a level that is comfortable for the subject when leaning forward to rest the head on the hands. Massage is applied to posterior and lateral neck muscles, chiefly the upper trapezius. (See p. 152 for flexion and extension of the neck, and p. 163 for rotation and lateral flexion.)
Start the massage at the occipital attachments of the upper trapezius. Begin with a smooth, firm stroking massage (effleurage).
Continue the massage along the trapezius to the attachments on the clavicles and scapulae.
Repeat the massage using a kneading technique (petrissage) to the left and right upper trapezius.
With face turned left to put a mild stretch on the left trapezius, repeat the stroking and kneading massage.
With face turned right to stretch right trapezius, repeat the stroking and kneading massage.
Sit with left side toward table. Wih elbow on the table, rest head on hand. With head tilted toward left, massage right lateral neck muscles. Reverse the above positions to massage left lateral neck muscles.
EXERCISES TO STRETCH NECK MUSCLES
Stretch Neck Rotators: Sit on a chair with hands grasping seat to keep shoulders down and level. Without tilting head, turn toward each side (using opposite neck rotators).
Stretch Lateral Neck Flexors: Sit on a chair with shoulders back and hands grasping seat to hold shoulders down and level. Tilt head directly sideways to stretch opposite lateral neck flexors. Exercises for lateral neck stretching may be modified to tilt anterolateral to stretch opposite posterolateral muscles.
Stretch Lateral Neck Flexors:
Seated or standing, place right hand on left shoulder to hold it down. Give assistance with left hand, by grasping right forearm near elbow and pulling it downward, lilt head directly sideways toward right to stretch left lateral neck flexors. Reverse hands and neck position to stretch right side.
Stretch Neck Extensors: Lie supine (or sit on a stool with back against the wall). With hands up beside head and low back flat, press head back with chin down and in, using anterior neck flexors to straighten (i.e., flatten) the neck.
Stretch Upper Trapezius by Strengthening I.atissimus Dorsi: Sit on a table with padded blocks beside hips. Keep body erect, with shoulders in good alignment. Press downward, straightening the elbows, and lift buttocks directly upward from table. (See also pp. 159, 324 and 325.)
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