How Rounded Shoulders are Linked to Workplace Stress and What to do About It

People in high responsibility office jobs often spend a lot of time seated in an office chair. 

They sit in such a way where the head shifts in front of the spine, the upper back becomes curved, and the shoulders are rounded in a forward position.

This puts the upper body out of alignment and affects the way you breath and puts the body into a stressed state called Sympathetic Dominance.

This is where the body’s system automatic operating system works in overdrive leading to symptoms such as poor sleep, release of the hormone cortisol in response to stress, breathing issues and pain.

Click here to learn more about rounded shoulders and poor posture and their effect on your health.

What causes rounded shoulders to occur?

It can come from sitting in a chair for long periods of time in a poor/incorrect position, poor sitting posture, carrying a heavy bag, increase use of lap top computers, smart phones and tablets.

It can also be caused by a muscle imbalance brought about by working the chest and core muscles more than those in the upper back.

What can be done to manage this better and prevent it from occurring.

If you in the office when sitting in a chair. Take note of how you are sitting and make the adjustments to maintain good posture.

Good Posture:                               Bad Posture:

  • Back Straight                       – Back Bent
  • Knees Bent            – Knees Straight
  • Neck Straight                       – Neck Bent
  • Head Relaxed                      – Head Rigid                                        

If You are at Home

Utilise the Healthy Joints Equal Mobile Joints Program as part of the 6P Program focused on the Thoracic (Upper Back) and Shoulder Areas. 

Remember the 3 Rules are to loosen the area, massage it then stretch it.

For example, when focusing on the thoracic area:

  1. Loosen the upper back by using dynamic movements such as Horizontal Arm Swings

2. Use a foam roller and/or a trigger point therapy ball to massage the upper back with a middle and upper back release.

3. Stretch out the Upper Back with a Thoracic Stretch.