Written and edited by Clara D. Kim (R. Ac)
To answer the question, understanding why we have pain is important. Pain is a protective reaction and warning to let us know that something needs correction. Poor posture and overstraining tired and weakens your muscles.
For instance, looking down at your phone for a long time or repeating a motion that can overstretch and misuse your muscles will cause slight tear and inflammation. Our muscles play an important role, not only to facilitate movement but to firmly hold bones, joints, vessels, and nerves in place. As overstraining continues to wear out the muscles and one day, you try to move your neck or back; your joints will trigger the nerves or pull a muscle. This trigger will cause a protective reaction(pain), tightening the surrounding muscles to protect from hurting more.
Pain and Acupuncture
When you look up acupuncture on a search engine, pain relief is most likely the reason to seek acupuncture in Vancouver (apart from fertility). I see patients every day with various pain conditions that affect their daily lives, and they ask me what can be done with the issues.
Infographic office syndrome Template Design. Concept Vector illustration
– Working long hours in sitting/standing position
– Studying/typing/ texting with hunched back and turtle-like neck
– Work that involves continuous misuse of the same muscles. (ex. Serving, painting and etc.)
– Lack of stretching/core strengthening exercises
– Diet that lacks sufficient nutrients to nourish your organs, muscles, and tendons
– A poor quality bed that doesn’t support your spine as it should be.
– Desks or chairs that are too high or low.
How many of the above apply to you? Yes, it is true that acupuncture can do wonders to relieve your pain. However, without the efforts to change the derivation of pain, the relief easily becomes temporary. Even if it is work related, there are certainly ways to reduce the harm. For that reason, with each patient under intensive pain care, I go through their posture and give suggestions on daily exercises that can prolong the relief and ultimately eliminate the root of the pain. Lifestyle suggestions vary from patient to patient but there is one rule of thumb to maintain a good posture and make it a healthier habit.
Sit and stand with core stability!
What is core stability? It refers to one’s ability to control the movement and position of the core. Greater stability you have, you have the greater level of control over other parts of your body, thus lesser chance of misusing and straining your limbs or back during daily activities.
Easily put, tightening your core when you are sitting on the desk or standing up for a prolonged period can prevent your spine from misalignment. When your core is strong and stable, your neck shoulder naturally relaxes and deter you from unconsciously crossing your legs or standing on one leg.
The same rule applies when you are lifting heavy objects or carrying heavy plates on both hands. Contraction of your core muscles keeps your back straight and body weight centered to the ground, preventing you from straining or pulling a muscle in your arm or back.
It’s definitely not easy to constantly tighten your core while sitting or standing for hours, and this change of habit takes at least a few months to get used to. Eventually, however, many patients return to thank the advice and you can goodbye to your pain.
Here are some examples of core stability exercises that you can add to your exercise routine!
5 core stability exercises you need to know
Core Stability: 10-minute workout
Triathlon Core Stability Level 1,2,3,4