Are you in pain at work..?

Do you suffer from neck, back and shoulder pain or stress and tension? Try performing Brugger Breaks regularly throughout the day. Brugger breaks are an exercise proven to help relieve tension in the neck and shoulders.

Within our society, a very common postural syndrome may be found where a person’s head is drawn forward with stresses at the top of the neck beneath the skull, and then in the neck and upper back near the shoulders. The slumped posture taken by most may also result in stresses in the middle and lower back.

The slumped posture places increased stress on the spinal discs. If the uneven stresses are allowed to progress over time, the discs may wear out prematurely and give way to deterioration, bulging, herniation of the discs, and eventual arthritis of the intervertebral joints. Faulty slumping posture is also associated with increased muscle tension and poor breathing habits.

Brugger’s relief position allows for a mini-break from the slumping posture and may help to prevent the buildup of stresses that occur throughout the day. It is a great exercise to ease neck and shoulder pain.

If a person works for long hours in a constrained, slumped posture, he or she needs to find some ways to sit more upright, using lumbar supports if possible. Then, micro-breaks every 20 minutes for about 10 seconds may be useful.

I like to perform the Brugger’s relief position while standing but it may also be performed when sitting.

If sitting:

• Sit on the edge of your chair

• Hold your head up high

• Spread your legs slightly apart to the sides

• Turn your legs out slightly

• Rest your weight on your legs and feet and relax your abdominal muscles

• Tilt your pelvis forward and raise your breastbone up

• Turn your hands palms-up

• Turn your arms slightly outward

• Hold this position and take deep "belly" breaths for 10 seconds

If standing:

• Stand tall and proud with head held high

• Spread your legs slightly apart to the sides

• Turn your feet outward slightly

• Draw your belly in slightly toward your spine

• Tilt your pelvis forward and raise your breastbone up

• Turn your hands palms-up and your arms slightly outward, with the arms somewhat raised from your sides

• Hold this position and take deep "belly" breaths for 10 seconds

By being faithful to this exercise, patients may notice less muscle tension, better breathing, and the sensation of straighter sitting and standing.

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