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  • Richard R. Fay, DC

Hunchback aka Dowager's Hump


One of the most commonly asked questions we get is “I sit at a desk all day and I know I have poor posture but what can I do to reduce my hunchback?” There are 3 very simple stretches that will help strengthen the muscles surrounding your thoracic spine and bring your head back into proper alignment.


3 Stretches To Help a Hunchback aka Dowager's Hump


1. Pectoral Stretch

This first stretch is designed to stretch out your chest muscles. In order to do this pectoral stretch, all you need is a door jamb. Place your arms on either side of the door frame forming a 90-degree angle with each arm. Lean in further and further as you feel your muscles relax. If you find this stretch is too easy, bring your arms higher above the 90-degree position and try doing the stretch that way.


2. Upper Back Stretch

This stretch is our favorite golf warm-up stretch and is great for loosening up your muscles. You’ll need something to hold onto so you can simply face a wall and place your hands flat against it above your head. Keeping neck neutral, sink down into the stretch. Be sure not to let your head drop as you’re doing this stretch. Focus on keeping your ears in line with your shoulders. After about 10-20 seconds, sink further into the stretch. If you have shoulder problems and it hurts to keep them above your head, you can keep your arms lower.


3. Chin Translation

This stretch is designed to improve your posture by taking that forward head posture that is symbolic of Dowager’s Hump and bringing it back in line over your body. Pretend your ears and your jaw are on a railroad cart and it’s going to go straight back like a cobra strike. This is not an up or down movement, it’s straight back. You can do this stretch just about anywhere to help with your posture. Once you get the hang of it, put 2 fingers behind your head to add some resistance.


Start doing these stretches to take the pressure off your neck and upper back, get rid of headaches, and start to improve your posture. Would you like help?


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