In periods of duress, we tend to bunch-or pull together our shoulders in a tense, rigid formation without recognizing it. This leads to painful injury such as a fraught neck nerve or a muscle tremor, which could eventually trigger twinges that radiate down an elbow and even into the fingers. Here’s a speedy exercise for neck and shoulder muscles to help stretch and relax muscles. (If you do any of these and experience pain, stop immediately and consult a doctor.)
Stand erect with your shoulder against a wall and place a twelve-inch rubber ball between your head (just above your right ear) and the wall. Push against the ball with your head until the ball contracts slightly. Push from the neck, instead of below the shoulders. Repeat twelve times, then do the same with the other side of the head. Then place the ball between your forehead and the wall for ten repetitions.
End it by standing with the rubber ball across your lower back, pressing the ball against the wall. Squat slowly allowing the ball to “migrate” gently up your spine, subsequently rising again to a comfortable standing position. Allow the ball to shift vertically down the distance of the spine.
Discover & Uphold Good Posture
Huddling your shoulders, a classic “stress stance,” throws off your whole structure off balance, resulting in musculoskeletal damage and associated problems. Sustaining exquisite posture is an acquired skill. Bess Mensendieck, M.D., a Dutch artist-turned-physician, asserts criteria for exemplary bearing that is now known as the Mensendieck Technique:
1. Position your feet parallel, precisely below the hip joints, with the balls of the feet two inches apart, the toes directly ahead, and the heels straight back.
2. Lift your pelvis by tucking the derriere securely together and slightly under.
3. Shrink your stomach muscles firmly upward while maintaining an elongated stance.
4. Pull your shoulder blades toward the spinal column and downward (allowing them to “grip” the vertebrae in midback), forward-up position.
5. Reach your neck upward to your crown, allowing your head to rest, gently poised, on your spine. (Your arms readily come precisely alongside your body.)
6. Evenly distribute your mass over your heels and the bases of your big toes.
Work Your Jaw
Parallel to the stress poise, the human jaw can be regarded a barometer of pressure. While we are edgy we often grit our jaws without realizing it. Several of us scrunch and mill our teeth in sleep until, in worst cases, the teeth become dilapidated and cracked- with the jaw aching perpetually. Almost twenty percent of the population grinds its teeth violently.
Rescue your sore jaw and poor teeth! The key is to become aware of your jaw. Are you gritting it now? Do you grit at night or when stress is at its worst? Relax your jaw by allowing it to go slack, touching your lips together but maintaining a space between your upper and lower teeth. Condition yourself to clutch your tongue in a position that is not touching your teeth. Work out your concerns before bed, if you realize that you grind at night. Now if that doesn’t work, consider getting a night-guard retainer from your dentist to preserve your teeth.
Remember this: worrying and stressing over something never serves you well. Be aware of your tension levels and let out the pressure. You’ll live longer and happier!
Joseph Plazo is a renowned success coach. He collects chi generators,offers executive coaching and helps people find great jobs in the Philippines [http://www.jobcentralasia.com].