Neck pain becomes more and more common around the globe. Much of it is being attributed to the use of tablets and iPads, particularly if they are being used to binge watch TV shows. Some are spending 4 or more hours with the neck bent down to catch up on their favorite shows. Before doing this, it is good to be informed of the following facts.
The head position affects 3 key parts of the body:
- the pelvis position
- the uneven weight load on the spine
- the movement pattern of the spinal joints
The head position leads the lower spinal structures to follow!
The head is in the top of the chain in a closed system when in sitting. It means that one part of the body is grounded to the hard surface such. In sitting position, the pelvis is grounded to the chair. This is important because they are the first contact to the ground resisting against the gravity. In sitting position, the center of the body weight falls on the center of the pelvis, which does not have much room to move. So other parts of the body compensates to cope with the load efficiently on the body.
Keeping the head and neck bent is similar to an isometric body weight work out on your back muscles.
The head and the brain weighs about 10-14 lbs. Lots of different muscle groups are involved to hold that head straight efficiently. More the neck is bent forward, the load or the stress on the upper back and other body parts become magnified. In this case, the muscles are like bands attached to the back and the top of the head trying to pull your head back up. This is why stretching of the upper back or back of the neck may not be the best approach for everyone.
Keeping things steady against the gravity is not an easy task.
Think about 10 lbs. of barbell holding up for a second and 30 seconds. The same thing goes to the spinal structure. When the head and neck muscles become exhausted, it tries to bring in other muscle groups to support the weight of the head.