Do Joints Matter? Relax & Smile!

Muscle activations are sequenced according to the movement in joints. Let us take a look at baseball batters. Although they do the same hitting, each of them has their unique individual hitting forms, they use different muscles, and how they use them differ each day. And those muscular tensions due to unnatural ways of using them may cause stiffness and pain. In order to perform efficiently, it is crucial to use the first joint properly, which would be the first one to begin moving. For instance, it is a relative movement of the skull and first neck bone to look up, but it is impossible for the first neck joint muscle to work in it’s “sagging” state because of the habitual forward head posture. The forward posture habit causes us to tighten up the neck, which prevent our best performance. The back or shoulder muscles have to compensate and work harder, as they are originally not designed for pulling the weight of our head. Have you ever felt a somewhat “puffy” pain or fatigue in your neck or shoulders when you’ve looked up to the sky or tried to reach up to get something? This uncomfortableness comes from using the muscles in your shoulders and the top of your neck, which are originally not designed to help us look up. The same relative movement occurs in joints for nodding. If you start with a neutral structure where your head is kept in the optimal position, nodding can be easily done using a friendly relationship with gravity. However, if you try to nod while carrying lots of pressure around your neck, you then must bend your neck which is unnecessary for the nodding movement. It is no wonder that you would end up with a neck stiffed from exhaustion. When you use your small joints efficiently, your whole body can perform the best with minimum load.

Head Posture: The Golden Rule
Place your hands at the back of your neck, fingers interlocked.
Slowly look up and feel the movement of your head posture.
How do you feel when you do a nodding movement?
Feel the joints with your third fingers and your little fingers.
Now, move your hands to the back of your head, and gently pull your head downward.
Remember to stretch your back muscles, making sure not to strain them!
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