By: Matt P.
I have had bad posture since at least my teens and it is very noticeable. In fact, after just 2 weeks of dating, my fiancée directly told me I have “horrible posture”. I had a huge growth spurt in my teens as well as gynecomastia which left me with a hunched back. I was a professional gamer and currently work in tech so I have been hunched over my keyboard over a decade. I also had numbness and tingling in my hands and lower arms that made it hard to function on a daily basis. It got to the point where I had to hire someone to type and control my computer for me! I was a pretty classic, yet extreme, case of bad posture especially in today’s tech world. But at just 31, I knew I had to address this issue before it actually became more than just a cosmetic issue.
I set out to fix the problem with three goals in mind:
- Stop looking like quasimodo.
- Not have to limit my time on my computer due to arm, shoulder, and back pain/fatigue.
- Build good form and avoid injury in the gym as I move into my thirties.
I saw several physical therapists without any notable changes despite VERY good compliance. After months without visible progress or symptomatic relief, I searched deeper and found Mark St. Peter. During our consultation, Mark pointed out the distortions in my spine and how they were the result of imbalances in the musculo-skeletal system that have developed over time in response to my intense computer use. Mark suggested I should see dramatic changes in 3 months and will need about 6-12 months to solidify these changes. And he was right! Though I still need to regularly complete exercises in order to maintain my progress.
The very first exercise we did was Pelvic Tilt. It was a little weird to understand but I mastered it pretty quickly. Chin-to-Throat was a whole other story. Laying on the floor, I would fit 4 fingers under my neck which told Mark I had a lot of work ahead of me.
Three months later, Pelvic Tilt felt very effortless in all positions (laying, standing, etc) and for Chin-to-Throat, I was able to fit 3 fingers under my neck. I really started to notice changes and my fiancée agreed. Even better, the pain in my hands that was virtually intractable is almost non-existent.
I am now 13 months into my rehabilitative journey and I feel that I am engaging my Pelvic Tilt naturally throughout the day and my Chin-to-Throat is down to 2 fingers. I still have a ways to go but I am so happy with the results and the progress I have made. I will be getting married next week and am really glad I won’t have a hunched back in my wedding photos. I have also noticed I am able to work at the computer for longer without pain and my gym form has greatly improved as well.