By megfiddler

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Don’t Do The Scrunchies

The first day of November started with temperatures in the 20’s. There are those who thought it was crisp, chilly, or invigorating and for others it was just down right cold. Ole Man Winter is making his presence known and he will probably just get bolder as the season progresses.

I always start to remind my clients about winter weather posture and warmth protection when the temperature starts dropping. We tend to bend forward, tuck our chin to our chest, elevate our shoulders to our ears and wrap our arms around our body to ward off the cold and biting winds. This can lead to shallow chest breathing and tight muscles.

Winter coats should be buttoned and zipped. Hats worn to keep body heat from escaping. Scarves around the neck to ward off chills. The scarves should cover the mouth and nose as well to keep cold air from entering lungs. Don’t forget mittens or gloves to protect the hands. I know the heavy winter clothing makes movement more cumbersome, but I believe it is better to be warm and bulky than cold, hunched over and stiff.

Keep your body relaxed. Be aware of your posture. Keep your eyes forward, shoulders down and relaxed. The head should be between the shoulders and not thrust forward. The average head weighs between 9-15 pounds so the  forward head thrust puts additional strain on the trapezius muscles. Watch this video to see three simple exercises to help with forward head posture and neck tension. The trapezius muscle is a superficial diamond shaped muscle that originates at the occipital bone(lower part of skull) and extends down to the mid back.  This muscle does  a lot of work.  It moves the shoulder blade in toward the spine and up and down.  It rotates and side bends the neck and brings the head and neck in a backward direction.  It also assists with breathing.

So dress warm, watch your posture, enjoy a warm beverage and don’t do the scrunchies.