How many texts do you think are sent out every day, hour, even every minute!? I have to admit, texting can present our bodies with some real challenges. But what exactly is the problem? Looking down? No. It’s the whole body that’s curving over the phone. That’s the bad news, but the good news is you can text all you want without trashing your body. Forget the C-curve body.
Think ‘angles.’“Angles” are your joints. We are designed to move very specifically from our joints but when you are texting while you’re slumped over and your butt is tucked in, you are hanging and straining soft tissue like the muscles and ligaments in your neck and back. This creates all sorts of discomfort and damage to both soft tissue and joints.
Start with the hips. Sit or stand with your crotch directly under you. Yes, your butt probably will feel a little bit like it’s sticking out. Don’t strain your back, let the back and belly go. Just get your crotch or pubic bone directly under you. Now we can stack the spine and head so that looking down at your phone is easy on the body. When you look down at your phone you are designed to move from the base of your neck. You will feel like you are hinging from that bony bump at the base of your neck. That is the spinous process of C7. It will feel like a hinging type of motion. Don’t roll your shoulders forward as your face goes down toward your chest.
When you roll or curve your spine, you’re hanging out on your soft tissue and straining it. When you focus specifically on moving from your joints, you’ll become so much more comfortable and relaxed. At first, these changes will feel strange. You’ve probably lost some range of motion, especially in the back of your neck, so when you switch from slumped to stacked, stretching could feel uncomfortable until you get used to your new posture. Each joint in our body has its own specific muscles and ligaments designed to take and move a load. But slumping and not stacking overloads certain joints with too much strain. Your focus always needs to be on relaxing and moving your bones so these muscles can do their job without injury.
Don’t treat your body like a hammock, but like a chair. Let it sit you up.