Help – my device is a pain in the neck!

Valerie helps with neck and shoulder pain.

Valerie helps with neck and shoulder pain.

In the space of 3 days, 3 people reflected to me that they were on their devices so much that they were missing out on connecting with people face to face.

I listened and nodded, knowing from my own experience that the way I use devices can lead to grouchiness, tension or pain – or NOT!

Want to prevent device tension from taking over?

  1. BREATHE! In hurrying to meet deadlines (others or our own), breathing can become shallow or held. No wonder feelings of frustration and pressure can grow.
  2. TAKE NOTICE of how you are. Will the world end if you slow down even a little? Are you hunched? straining eyes? frowning?
  3. Take a STANDING BREAK. A break from sitting, such as standing and stretching and/or moving my laptop to a shelf where I can use it as a standing desk
  4. Take an EYE BREAK. If you can already or can learn to – type by touch and look at something further up in the room from time to time. This can ensure that the heavy weight of your head protruding or leaning forward of your lap top is not a strain on your upper back, neck and shoulders.  LOOK TO THE HORIZON.  Standing at the window and gazing at things at different distances, moving eyes left and right, letting go of a stare or narrow focus, softening the gaze and opening up the periphery are choices that can reduce headaches and prevent eyestrain.
  5. Get MOVING. – a short walk (even down the hall to get a drink of water – also good for you in every way) or a little dance can bring not only physical relief, but a fresh approach to what might otherwise seem like a very difficult task.

Take care of your precious physical self. It’s one of the best ways you can improve your odds of a happy life now and in your maturity.

I love helping you to move easily and effectively and pleasurably.  (What a great job! Seeing these changes in my clients!) Give me a call if you’d like to learn more about how working with me can help. There’s never been a better time to improve your self-care and your well-being.

Exploring my slump . . .

Reading a book the other day, I noticed my eyes had scanned several lines without taking in content.  Was I uninterested, tired, or something else?  My curiosity got the better of me, and I began to apply some Feldenkrais strategies to observe my posture and then change the situation.

Here’s a basic exploration such as the one I did, which you might try to effect your sitting posture, comfort and alertness.  I put down my book to do it:)

1) Notice, are you slumping? twisted? something else?  How are you breathing?  What shape is your chest?

2) What if you do a little bit more of it on purpose? Is it more or less comfortable?

3) How can you apply the least movement that brings improvement?  Why not a bigger “correction”.  Because when we use a bigger muscular effort to improve our posture, we tire, and may collapse back into our default pattern.  Using easy movements to improve, means we are more able to sustain the improvement.  Undo any spinal curl a bit – not by putting your shoulders back, but by uncurling the whole spine and feel the change in your rib cage.  Pause.

4) Can your pelvis be part of the solution?  Just stop for a moment now and ask yourself, what part of your pelvis is on the seat you are resting on?  Place your hands under your pelvic bones or “sit bones” and rock a little forward and back.  Are you sitting behind or in front of the place where you can feel the bones easiest?

Slump a little again (or your version of the challenging posture), and notice, what your pelvis does? If you’re slumping it probably rolls back, your tailbone coming a little nearer the seat.  When you “unslump” can your pelvis roll forward a little?  Yes? How can you apply the least movement here to bring improvement? Explore a little more in a small comfortable range.  Rest.

5) How are you sitting now?  How are you breathing?  Refreshed?  What do you want to do now?  Return to your task, rest, or move on to something new?

There are many mini moves like this one that can improve sitting comfort.  Coming for an intro session, a set of individual hands on lessons, or attending classes is a great way to learn them.  If you want to see if working with me is right for you, why not give me a ring.  I’ll be happy to hear about your situation and see if I can help.

The Feldenkrais Way – Registered Music Teachers Journal article

IRMT articleIRMT article 4 1IRMT article 3 IRMT article 4

Free Your Neck

Turning Heads Article

voiceandmovement.co.nz is now valeriewycoff.com. You may like to update your links.