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How To Fix Your Posture With Rounded Shoulders

Physiotherapist Working With Patient — Proactive Physiotherapy in Whitfield, QLD

Have you been spending a lot of time at your desk recently? Have you noticed that your shoulders have begun to look slouched, hunched, and rounded?

If your spine is starting to look like the letter ‘C’, it can make you feel self-conscious about the way you look. Fortunately, there are a number of exercises that, if done regularly, can help you improve your posture.

The Issue of Rounded Shoulders

If you have poor posture, it can have a number of negative health implications. If you have rounded shoulders, over time this may lead to what is known as ‘upper crossed syndrome’.

This is where the muscles in the deep of your neck and your upper-to-mid back become weaker. As a result, the other muscles in your back, neck and chest become tighter, causing your shoulders to pull forward.

How to Fix Rounded Shoulders

If you are worried about your posture and how your back looks, there are some simple changes you can make to reduce and prevent your shoulders from becoming rounded and slouched.

First, it is hugely important that you are self-aware of your posture. If you notice yourself slouching, make sure you sort out your posture straight away.

One way to do this is using the 20-20-20 method. This is where you set an alarm for every 20 minutes.

Every time the alarm goes off, you should look away from your computer and focus on something that is more than 20 metres away, and then do a stretch to reset your shoulders before you get back to work.

There are also a wide variety of exercises that you can do that will help with your rounded shoulders.

Here are some of the best stretches and movements you can do to improve your posture:

Reverse Shoulder Stretch: Stand up straight and reach both of your arms behind you, clasping your hands together. You should immediately be able to feel a pull as your muscles start to be stretched.

Take a deep breath and then move your arms to as high as they can go. Hold this position for 20 to 30 seconds.

Bird Dog Movement: this move is the perfect way to strengthen your entire posterior from your neck muscles to your core. Start on your hands and knees, making sure that your body forms a straight line from the bottom of your spine to the top of your head.

Next, lift your right arm and left leg at the same time, extending them as far as your can. Repeat this with your left arm and right leg. Do this 15 to 20 times for the best results.

Get Professional Help

If you are concerned about your posture and want some expert advice, a physiotherapist can help.

Our trained team at Proactive Physiotherapy in Cairns are professionals and can help you improve your posture with specialist exercises that will have you standing taller in no time.

If you would like to fix your posture today, call 07 4053 6222, our team is available to answer your questions.

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When should you strap a sprained ankle?

Man holding his sprained ankle — Proactive Physiotherapy in Whitfield, QLD

Sprained ankles are a very common injury, especially if you play sport, but also one of the most overlooked musculoskeletal injuries as far as receiving correct targeted treatment. The number of people who develop chronic ankle instability is very high and could be avoided in many cases with the right action taken at the onset of the injury.

There are many questions about a sprained ankle and many factors to consider because each sprain is unique.

The first questions a physiotherapist may ask before they make a recommendation on the strain may be:

  • What is your sport or activity?
  • How often do you play or participate in your chosen sport?
  • At what level do you play your sport?
  • Have you had previous ankle sprains?
  • Have you had an allergic reaction to taping before?
  • What is the severity of their injury?
  • Is this a short or long-term recovery strategy?
  • Where are they with their rehabilitation journey?

What is a sprained ankle?

A sprained ankle is an injury to the ligaments that support the bones of the ankle joint. Initially bandaging an ankle may be used to provide compression to the injury to help control swelling and give some support.

4 steps to wrapping an ankle with a bandage to help control swelling

  1. Ensure the bandage you’re using will be long enough to wrap around your ankle and foot several times. Don’t worry if it’s too long, as a dressing can easily be cut where needed. The bandage should be elastisised to allow for swelling
  2. Start by wrapping the bandage around the ball of your foot below the toes.
  3. Once you have a base around the foot, take the bandage around your foot and ankle, making a figure-eight pattern.
  4. Keep the bandage taut, so it won’t unravel but not too tight that it risks cutting off circulation. The wrap should feel firm enough that the ankle will have limited movement and has support but not uncomfortable. If you feel a tingling sensation or feel numbing, it’s a sign the wrap is too tight and you should start the wrapping process again.

Why should I strap an ankle?

Strapping  for an ankle will be used shortly after major swelling subsides

  • Strapping or bracing a sprained ankle will help in many ways to recover from the injury.
  • It will stabilise the injury to allow the ligaments to heal.
  • It will speed up the time of recovery.
  • It will prevent further complications and injury from occurring.
  • It may eliminate the need for additional treatment.

How severe does a sprain have to be to be strapped?

It will depend on the range of severity. It could be a very low-grade lateral ankle sprain with minimal consequences for the lateral ligaments to an extensive injury. It could involve multiple ligaments, bone bruising, cartilage defects, and even fractures if it’s an extensive injury.

Low-grade sprains usually are not such a significant threat; however, if they are not strapped, pain and swelling could persist, which could turn a low-grade injury into a moderate injury very quickly. Once an injury is neglected or mismanaged, it’s common for reoccurring injuries to happen.

Taping Vs Bracing

Often people ask if bracing is better than taping for preventative measures of a sprain. Here are some pros and cons of each to consider.

Bracing Pros

Buying a brace is a one-off purchase, so it’s less expensive in the long term than taping regularly. It’s also more convenient as it doesn’t require time to put on. Bracing can be suitable for adults and children who don’t have access to trainers and managers who can tape.

Bracing Cons

The downside to bracing is that often they can be bulky and uncomfortable in shoes. Sometimes they can’t be moulded or customised to the foot as taping can, which means they can be more problematic than helpful to an athlete’s performance.

Taping Pros

Taping is less expensive in the short term if you’re only going to tape a few times. Taping is easier to customise to an athlete’s foot, and you can tape in specific ways and around areas of the ankle and underfoot for more comfort than a brace can.

Taping Cons

Taping can be more expensive than bracing in the long term because of continuously buying supplies. Also, the tape cannot be adjusted after it has been applied, and even if used well, it can loosen from exercise or sweat.

With proper care, a sprained ankle ligament will usually heal relatively quickly. Knowing how to strap a sprained ankle firmly but safely will help with healing.

Just remember not to keep the joint immobilised too long or wrapped too tightly or too loosely. And lookout for signs that the injury may be more serious than you originally thought, such as pain that lingers or gets worse.

If you have a reoccurring ankle injury or even if this is your first sprained ankle, it’s best to see physiotherapist to get the right advice and treatment.

Proactive Physiotherapy can help you with any ankle injury and provide a suitable treatment and care plan to strengthen the muscles needed.

Contact us to organise your confidential appointment with one of our physiotherapists to get you back on track.

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How to treat pelvic girdle pain during pregnancy

Pregnancy is a beautiful time of life full of lots of joy and excitement, but the female body will go through immense changes and pressures on different parts of the body. The pelvis area will come under tremendous strain during the pregnancy and will need treatment during pregnancy and after to remain in optimum health.

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Deep Neck Flexor Exercises

Neck pain can result from a range of issues. Injury, incorrect posture and muscle imbalances are usually the primary sources of this pain. If you want to know more about deep neck exercises and strengthening exercises, and why they’re important, this guide is perfect for you.

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What are core muscles? 6 real-world benefits

It’s a misconception that to have a strong core, doing a bunch of sit-ups and crunches alone will produce strong core muscle. Physiotherapy can help build the correct strength in the core muscles that can help your mid-section and help your posture, back pain and have multiple benefits for everyday life.

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An estimated 3.7 million Australians or 1 in 6 people have been reported to have had back pain so severe long-term sick leave was required.

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What are the benefits of Pilates and physio combined?

Physiotherapy can be an excellent way for maintaining optimal physical strength, but often Pilates is only known as a fitness regime and not often understood of how beneficial it can be as a combined physiotherapy treatment.

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WE ARE OPEN.

Proactive Physiotherapy is open for face-to-face visits and group exercise classes.

Your safety is our top priority. We have developed a protocol to ensure that all government recommendations including physical distancing and cleaning are adhered to. We have COVID-safe cleaning procedures in place, we are vetting everyone who comes into the clinic for any symptoms of illness, and we are maintaining social distancing where it is appropriate and possible.

To help minimise any risks, please do not come into the clinic unless you are a patient, parent of a minor who is a patient, or translator or carer for a patient attending the clinic. If you do not wish to come into the clinic, but still require some assistance, please call 40840602 to organise a telehealth appointment.

We look forward to assisting our clients, old and new, in these unusual times and will temper our approach to community safety as the COVID situation fluctuates.

Thank you for your understanding.

Julie Faulks and the entire Proactive Physio team.