3 Tips to Help Prevent a Dowager’s Hump

Common among those who are approaching an older age, a postural condition called “kyphosis”, more commonly known as Dowager’s Hump, is the result of chronic forward-leaning or hunching of the back.

Both men and women can be affected by this minor spinal fracture, called a “wedge fracture” — now becoming more and more evident among those who are younger in age, due to long hours of sitting and slouching on a desk, or squinting forward to read a text.

The natural resolve would be to straighten up, however, if the amount of time spent with a hunched back is still more constant, at some point it will become more and more difficult to correct.

If you are beginning to notice or feel a small hump forming at the back of your neck, do not fret. With proper correction of your daily habits and muscular imbalances, you will get rid of it in no time, or appreciate the benefits of preventing anything from ever forming. Here are three tips to help bring strength and alignment to your spine:

1. Correct your posture

Dowager’s hump usually begins with a chicken head posture. This is when you carry your head in a forward posture, that goes out of alignment from your spine. Always remember that your neck carries approximately ten additional pounds, regardless of your good or bad posture. In the practise of yoga, we believe that from the tip of the tailbone, your spine should beautifully extend to the crown of your head, and every inch of protrusion affects this extension.

To correct your posture, sit or stand straight and connect with your centre — you should feel aligned, not strained. Start to imagine a string going through your body from the tip of your head to the soles of your feet, and imagine the strip being pulled upward to the ceiling. Keep to this imagination each time you change your position from lying to sitting or standing. Changing the habit of your posture is the best way to begin your journey of preventing dowager’s hump.

2. Stretch and strengthen you neck and back muscles

For many in Ireland, it is impossible to avoid sitting at a desk for hours on end. Here is a wonderful chair exercise you can flow through that is part of my 21-Days of Yoga Challenge. Practise this regularly, daily if you will, to bring stretch and strengthening to your now corrected posture.

3. Train your body to remain aligned

Invest in proper tools or courses that will help you retain your mobility. Generally, to maintain fitness and health, you are prescribed at least 30 minutes of moderate physical activity for each day. To improve in your fitness and activate weight loss, you would need more time and consistency in the advancement of your physical activity — this simply means, you cannot remain stagnant in one exercise routine alone. You would have to progress.

Do you suffer from stress or tension and hold it in your shoulders, or develop a weak lower back when over do it? Maybe you suffer from back, neck or shoulder pain, headaches or other related issues? Are you developing bad posture or a rounded back? Do you take pain medication or have to take bed rest for back related problems? Maybe you’ve been told you have a lack of core strength? If you answered yes to any of these questions, then our Monday Back’s Class is perfect for you. Develop body awareness, flexibility, and strength, in a small class, where you can get the support you need. Now with 6 weeks left, this is the perfect time for you to join in. ✨