Forward Head Posture

Consider these 10 fascinating quotes from Spine experts.
“90% of the stimulation and nutrition to the brain is generated by the movement of the spine. This is analogous to a windmill generating electricity” -Dr. Roger Sperry (Medical doctor winner of the Nobel prize for brain research)

“Loss of the cervical curve (i.e. loss of normal spinal posture), stretches the spinal cord 5-7 centimeters, and causes disease.”–Dr. A. Breig, Neuro-surgeon, winner of the Nobel Prize

“Forward head posture leads to long term muscle strain, disc herniations, arthritis and pinched nerves.” –Mayo Clinic, November 3, 2000

“For every inch of forward head posture, it can increase the weight of the head on the spine by an additional 10 pounds.” Kapandji, Physiology of Joints, Vol 3.

“Abnormal postures are well known to play a role in the causation of pain and functional impairment leading to disability.” Calliet, R. M.D., Low Back Pain Syndrome, Edition 4, Pain Series, F.A. Davis Company Fourth Printing, 1991, pgs. 5-8 and 26-43.

“By far the most important proprioceptive information needed for the maintenance of equilibrium is that derived from the joint receptors of the neck” -Guyton A. Basic Neuroscience. 2nd ed. Philadelphia: WB Saunders; 1991

90-97% of all back pain is due to dysfunction of either the spinal joints or the muscles or both. -MANUAL MEDICINE, Vol. 5, No. 3, 1990, 110-114. Kirkaldy-Willis and Tilscher

Shifts in gravity (Postural) in the aging population led to hemorrhoids, varicose veins of the legs, osteoporosis, intestinal problems, overall poorer health and even early death. -Journal of the American Medical Association, J.T. Freeman, “Posture in the Aging and Aged Body”. , Vol. 165, No. 7, 1957, 843-846

And the American Journal of Pain Management, Vol. 4, No.1, 1994, 36-39 “Postural and Respiratory Modulation of Autonomic Function, Pain, and Health” concluded that posture affects all human function including proper breathing, musculoskeletal pain, mind/body interaction and balance, vocal ability–including speaking and singing, proper immune function and, of course, overall health. WOW!

Face pull Exericse: is one of the best exercises to balance out tight Pec’s and Forward Head Posture to achieve structural balance. Charles Poliquin Strenth Coach: 2 min video:

A better version of the Face pull with detailed explanation: 12ish min video….skip or fast forward through the first 2 mins of video. Stop Doing Face Pulls Like This! (SAVE A FRIEND) ATHLEAN-X

Wall Angels(2 mins):

Short Exercise Video:  Forward Head Posture Correction (Anti-Ageing Must)

Posture Predicts MortalityJournal of the American Geriatrics Society-Volume 52 Issue 10 Page 1662 – October 2004-Deborah M. Kado, MD, MS, Mei-Hua Huang, DrPH, Arun S. Karlamangla, MD, PhD, Elizabeth Barrett-Connor, MD and Gail A. Greendale, MD

Why is Forward Head Posture so stubborn?

As a developing postural deviation, Forward Head Posture is mainly caused by subconscious responses of our body to unsupportive environmental conditions in everyday life.

From long hours spent at computer, to poorly designed office furniture, to the slouching tendency of our own body while sitting, the unsupportive environmental conditions are pervasive in our lives.

Of course, education and awareness of Forward Head Posture and its severe consequences is important; education and awareness of health hazards of sedentary lifestyles is also important, including the choice of the right office furniture and work station.

However if the tendency of subconscious negative reactions is not controlled, none of the previous efforts will lead to our desired objective of correcting or preventing Forward Head Posture or sometimes called “Anterior Head Carriage”.

It is the subconscious response that is the most difficult to control. And it is the subconscious response that makes the Forward Head Posture so stubborn.

Furthermore, a forward postured head adds 15 – 30 lb of additional tension/stress on its supporting muscles in the back of the neck for each inch of forward protrusion of the head.

The additional stress will, with time, leads to further protrusion of head – more severe Forward Head Posture  and related complications.

As a result, unfortunately, FHP not only is stubborn, but also will progress from bad to worse, if not being attended.

How to get the subconscious response under control?

The key word is proprioception.

In the early 1900’s, English neurophysiologist Charles Sherrington (1857-1952) first established his landmark research on the function of the neuron and study of reflex action, for which he received the Nobel Prize for Physiology or Medicine in 1932.

It was Charles Sherrington who first used the concept and the term of “proprioception”.

When stimulation’s are provided to the neurons, human body will be activated to subconsciously coordinate and balance itself.

By providing the right stimulation to the right neurons, human body will subconsciously respond in a way that counters the responses that are otherwise caused by unsupportive environmental conditions leading to Forward Head Posture.

Through postural awareness, better ergonomics,  and corrective spinal exercises (chin retraction, shoulder blade/mid-scapular strengthening, and a stronger core) you can correct the devastating effects of Forward Head Posture.

Other good articles and strategies to address Forward Head Posture:

If you are on facebook here is a link to ergonomic workstations and chairs.

article on work stations.

Other related articles…..

Posture Predicts Mortality-Journal of the American Geriatrics Society 2004

Posture may Predict Future Disability-J Gerontol A Biol Sci Med Sci. 2013

Posture and Biomechanics-Journal of Radiology 1996

Healing Time of Soft Tissue

Back Pain-Insider Secrets revealed-San Fran Gate 2012

A New Gatekeeper for Back Pain

Why Does Back Pain Recur?

Fibroblast cells in Healing

Fish oil-Neurosurgeon for the Pittsburgh Steelers

Foam Roller for Back Pain

Exercise Makes Us Feel Good-NY Times 2011

Gluten Free Diet helped Nerve Pain-Neurology 2010

Inflammation-13 Tips To Fight Inflammation

Laser Therapy in Rehabilitation-Irvine California

Low Back Pain Studies 2010

Magnesium Deficiency

Muscle Trigger points vs Acupuncture points

Neck pain-Journal of the American Board of Family Practice 2004

Nerve ingrowth into chronic painful disc-Lancet 1997

Nerve Supply of the lumbar disc-JBJS 2007

Omega 3’s-Molecular Neurobiology-January 2011

Omega 3′s and Nerve pain-Clinical Journal of Pain 2010

Self Movement Screen

Sitting-Can sitting too much kill you? Scientific American Jan 2011

Vit. D-What We Have Learned About Vitamin D Dosing

Exercise and Chiropractic-part of the anti aging strategy.

Spinal Rehabilitation and Chiropractic

If you are suffering from: Sports Injuries, Sprains, Strains, Car accident,  Herniated Disc, Disc Bulge, Degenerative Disc Disease, Neck pain, Headaches, Low back pain, of just want to feel better and have better life performance– please call our office in Irvine, California- at 949.857.1888 or visit our website at ADJUST2IT to learn more about Functional Fitness Chiropractic, Sports massage, Myofascial Release, Corrective Exercise, Non Surgical Spinal Decompression, Class IV laser,  and Functional Nutrition.

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