The shoulder is a complex joint. Simply, daily activities like sitting, using a computer mouse, driving, shifting and carrying a bag are some of the greatest contributors to shoulder pain. Poor posture affects the position of the shoulder joint by causing excessive tension in some muscles and excessive weakness in others.
For example, a shoulder that is rounded forward results in very tight muscles of the neck and chest, accompanied by weak muscles of the back. Because the body is efficient, it will “help” us hold this posture by adhering muscle tissue in place. This adaptation results in trigger points, hyper-contracted points in the muscle fiber that eventually prevent full muscular contraction or lengthening.
Imagine the axle of a car. Each wheel is meant to spin freely on each end of the axle. Our arms are like wheels, our shoulders and a theoretical axle should be able to pass through the torso to connect the two.
When the shoulders are “locked” in a rounded forward and elevated position, our arms aren’t able to spin freely. Instead, they rub and scrape on the surrounding structures (ligaments, tendons, other muscles and bones). When we combine a dysfunctional shoulder position with daily activity the result is overuse injury and pain.
If you're like me, you spend a lot of time in a rounded forward position. Orthopedic massage therapy can help undo some of that repetitive poor posture.