Tips to Reduce Shoulder and Neck Pain in Desk Workers

08 June 2022

Desk workers read on!

Does your job involves sitting at a desk for hours at a time multiple days a week? As you probably know, this can take its toll on your neck and shoulders. As an ex-desk worker I understand exactly how this feels!

Why do my shoulders always ache?

Desk workers often find their shoulders become hunched and rounded forward by the end of the day as their posture becomes compromised. Even with the best ergonomic workstations the body can still struggle to deal with the sedentary position. The inactivity of the working day has negative consequences on your posture and poor effects on your musculoskeletal system.

Desk worker

Working from home due to the pandemic often means workstations are not set up correctly for your needs. A kitchen table or sofa during lockdown played havoc with many people's bodies!

Even if you're not a desk worker you may still experience these symptoms if you use a laptop regularly, sit for periods of a time in front of the television, or perhaps you are a gamer and spend a lot of time I'm sitting in one place often in one position.

How do my muscles get so tense?

When you sit for long periods at a time at a computer, your chest muscles become tight and shortened. This is because your arms are in a forward position using a keyboard and mouse resting on the desk in front of you. As a result, your shoulders and muscles of your upper back are stretched forwards and become weakened. You may protract your head forward which adds extra stress on your neck muscles and causes weakness in the neck. Your posture as a whole is not ideal sat like this and consequently you experience tension, tightness and pain which can get worse over time and make your day challenging and miserable.


How can I feel better?

Here are 5 ways to improve neck and shoulder pain for desk workers:

1. Check your workstation
Your monitor should be about one arms length away and the top of your screen should be a couple of inches above your eyes. Your feet should be flat on the floor or on a foot rest. You should be facing forwards, not at an angle.

2. Stretch out your pec muscles
Even if you think you don't have any pec muscles, you do! Stand in a doorway and place your hands either side of the doorframe at shoulder height. Then take a small step through the doorway to stretch those muscles. This will help open up the chest and relax the shoulders.

3. Reset your shoulder position
Lift your shoulders up towards your ears as far as you can, really scrunch them upwards. Then, push them back as far as you can. Finally, drop your shoulders down. This will rebalance your shoulder position. You can do this throughout the day to improve your posture while sitting and avoid slumping in the shoulders.

4. Use a microwavable wheat bag
The heat from this will give you some temporary relief from muscle tension.

5. Book a treatment!
We can help reduce tension in the neck and shoulders, relieve pain and tightness and help you feel much more comfortable. Who doesn't feel better after a neck and shoulder massage?! Check our live availability by clicking on the button below.

Author: Cross Massage Therapy