Forward head posture refers to a compensation pattern where the head (suboccipital muscles) is tilted forward and downward putting strain on the neck (cervical spine). It is usually caused by sedentary lifestyles and frequently looking downwards at our mobile devices. This gravitational imbalance between the neck and head can cause neck strain and pain, headaches, and muscular imbalances with the rest of the body.
How Does This Happen?
Although modern technology often makes our lives easier, constantly craning our necks to use our touchscreen devices can lead to top-heavy postural distortions. By leaning forward and looking down a lot, our heads become forced out of gravitational balance and neutral alignment with the spine. This prevents the rest of our body (the core, hips, and legs) from properly engaging and leads to lumbo-pelvic instability. With so much weight and strain around the neck and head, our sensory input and neural activity become inefficient.
Signs of Forward Head Posture
- Exaggerated functional curvature at the cervical spine
- Neck strain and headaches
- Regular slouching and poor posture
- Tightness and pain of the back
- Under activated core muscles
- Tight hips and leg muscles
How Do You Fix Forward Head Posture?
To address forward head posture, it is important to focus on relaxing the neck and shoulder muscles, correcting alignment, and sitting up straight. We would recommend the following exercises:
- Release – Hamstrings, Scalenes 60 – 120 sec
- Activate – Laying Prone Cobra 2 x 20
- Integrate – Single Leg Straight Leg Deadlift w/db scaption on the same side 2 x 20
- Strengthen – 4 point prone neck flexion 2 x 20