Body Compensation & Upper Body Pain

  • Rittenhouse Rehab Personal Training at The PrivatGym™

Body Compensation & Upper Body Pain

Here at The PrivatGym™ | Rittenhouse rehab personal training has become an important part of our practice. And if you’re a rehab, “pre-hab” or a fitness client, we always monitor our clients’ physical condition.

One thing that concerns the team is posture compensation. Technical types call this “Upper Cross Syndrome” and “Lower Cross Syndrome.” (Learn more here). Both involve mis-aligned joints and muscles. And, they both cause pain and discomfort.

Tim Hampton our Partnership Director has taken the deep dive to help explain the problem.

So, you might ask:

How do you define posture compensation? And what’s the impact to our health?

Posture compensation emerges from the fact that we live in a fast pace, work-first environment. But our days don’t involve much physical activity. For many of us, our multi-tasking lives are very sedentary.

So what happens? We try avoiding pain and discomfort caused by sitting. To do this, we start contorting our bodies.

First, when we work at a desk we tend to slump. This causes our neck to roll forward and our chest to contract. Second, since we sit so much, our front hip muscles tighten. Then when we walk, we pitch forward. All of this contributes to Upper Cross Syndrome.

Upper Cross Syndrome constricts the muscles of your front upper body.

The muscles also become over active – trying to “correct” by compensating. The chest muscles and the shoulder and neck muscles are the main problems. These muscles combine with weak under-active mid-to-lower back muscles and the cervical spine flexors.

The combined over and under activity creates an unhealthy environment for the shoulders and neck. You slump. And, your slumping causes back and neck spasms. It also can cause curvature of the spine and shortness of breath.

What does Rittenhouse rehab personal training do to correct the problem?

Remember that it took time to develop the problems and it will take time to correct them. A steady program of exercise can help.

For Upper Cross Syndrome, at The PrivatGym™ | Rittenhouse we recommend exercises that stretch the upper back and chest muscles. Even if you are using us for Rittenhouse rehab personal training – we have gentle and effective exercises for you. And we combine these with a regimen of exercises to strength the middle back and the rear shoulder muscles.

For the 99% of the time when you’re not at the gym, you can put in place some simple lifestyle changes. First, add some more movement into your day. Take a few short walks. Get up from your desk and flex. Second, add some stretching too. We particularly encourage stretching your lower back and shoulders.

Again, patience is a virtue here. And if you need some help with a program or encouragement we’re here. At The PrivatGym™ Rittenhouse rehab personal training is part of all of our team’s background.