Based in Manchester
with health clinic in Didsbury
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Neck pain is a very common complaint. The majority of studies included in a 2008 review, shows that between 20% and 50% of people will experience neck pain each year.
Some studies show that occupations such as dentists, nurses, office workers and crane operators have been shown to have a prevalence of neck pain above 50%, and the annual prevalence of sick leave due to neck pain varies in available studies from 5% to10% (Source).
Studies show that office and computer workers had the highest incidence of neck disorders amongst all occupations studied.
'One to one lessons in the Alexander technique from registered teachers have long term benefits for patients with chronic back pain.'
Neck muscles can be strained from poor posture — whether it's leaning into your computer at work or hunching over your workbench at home. Wear-and-tear arthritis is also a common cause of neck pain. Self reported risk factors for neck pain include:
Sitting for prolonged periods, repetitive work, bending cervical spine for prolonged time, working in awkward positions, inadequate keyboard and mouse position, no chair armrest, upper extremity posture, job strain, low co-worker support, decreased job security and overall stress at work (Source).
Rarely, neck pain can be a symptom of a more serious problem. Seek medical care if your neck pain is accompanied by numbness or loss of strength in your arms or hands or if you're experiencing shooting pain into your shoulder or down your arm.
When you have a stiff neck, if you take a moment to notice how you sit, stand and move it's likely you'll become aware that your movements are also stiff and awkward. You may notice that this includes restricted breathing.. and may also impact on your thinking too, with some mental rigidity. If these symptoms appear to mirror the stiffness in your neck, that's because they do!
This is because your head weighs between 10-12 pounds, it is positioned right at the very top of your neck and if the balance of that weight is compromised, you’re using a lot of muscular effort to hold your head up. This results in a stiff neck.
The biological connections between your head and torso are directly impacted by how free your neck is because air, food, nerve pathways and life-sustaining fluids like blood and lymph all pass through this area to the rest of your body. These structures in your neck are packed into a condense space, so the neck requires minimum tension to allow these to function effectively.
The more stiff your neck, the more this impacts the mechanics of your overall functioning, posture, coordination, ability to move efficiently and general health.
This is why learning how to release tension in your neck is one of the best things you can do to improve your overall functioning. This is where Joshua can help your stiff neck with Alexander Technique lessons
1. You will be able to use the Alexander Technique to move safely and sensibly.
2. You can learn to sit upright without strain instead of slumping.
3. The Technique engages your body's central support system which will reduce straining and overusing your body's surface muscles.
3. You will learn to carry out routine activities, pain-free, such as lifting, walking, climbing stairs, getting out of a car/bed/chair, reaching, climbing stairs...
4. You will become more aware to your body's warning signs of tension.
5. Episodes of pain will be lessened or prevented completely helping you to decrease your painkillers or anti-inflammatory medications.
6. You will uncover where your neck pain comes from and how to change it.
The Alexander Technique is a proven self care practise that reduces pain, increases your mobility and provides long term relief.
It will educate you with a proper understanding of the way your body is fundamentally designed to function and enable you to move in a way that will help your neck pain.
Joshua will tailor your Alexander Technique sessions to your specific needs, by listening to your symptoms and applying professional observation of your movement.
Neck Pain Research
A major 3 year UK trial funded by Arthritis Research UK is currently under way to investigate the effectiveness Alexander Technique (and also acupuncture) in alleviating chronic neck pain.
By learning how to release tension in your neck through Alexander Technique lessons, your head will naturally move upwards, lifting and lengthening your spine. You won’t be collapsed, and your shoulders will sit further back on your previously-collapsed ribcage without you having to push your shoulders back.
Alexander Technique will help you become more aware of your body's signals and signs of distress so you can relieve neck tension before it escalates to pain and restore balance - during and after work.
Alexander Technique lessons will teach you to breathe properly, helping to prevent fatigue and calm the nervous system.
Alexander Technique can be combined well with other treatments for your neck pain.
Most of all it will empower you to prevent and relieve your neck pain problems, in turn having a positive impact on your whole body, helping you to function on a daily basis with greater ease, confidence and productivity.
Alexander Technique has been shown to help with back pain.
If you're still not sure, give Joshua a call on 0161 434 0195 or book an Alexander Technique consultation so you can find out more.
Joshua is a highly skilled Alexander Technique teacher and has been helping people with back pain and posture related issues for over 25 years and he can help you too!
Help Neck Pain with Alexander Technique