Last week we published an article sharing a massage therapist’s advice on how to work from home without hurting your back—but let’s be frank. We’re already two years into the pandemic. We’ve probably already spent our fair share of time hunched over laptops while sitting “crisscross-apple-sauce” on a couch or bed. We don’t just need to be instructed on the ideal WFH posture. We need to know how to correct the suboptimal WFH posture we’ve already established.
If you can relate, read on for some tips on how to deal with the painful effects of the two-year-long WFH slouch.
Try massage therapy
Massage therapy is often thought of as a luxury. Well, think again! Massage therapy is a worthy healthcare treatment that can help patients manage pain and correct damaging posture. If it’s within your means, then consider scheduling regular bodywork. According to licensed massage therapist Polly Brasch, “the more you get massages, the more it trains your muscles to relax faster and respond to less stressful stimuli.”
If you, like many others, carry a lot of tension in your shoulders and neck, then blast it away with a couple of massages a week. Once the tension subsides, rework your schedule to a more manageable once every three or four weeks for maintenance.
See a physical therapist
Check your health insurance plan or employee benefits to see if physiotherapy is covered. If so, it could make these sessions a bit more affordable than massage therapy. Physical therapy is especially recommended if you’ve had injuries in the past, like herniated disks.
Hydrate and take movement breaks
Yet another reason to drink water: hydration helps with recovery! Brasch recommends setting a timer for every 15 or 20 minutes to remind yourself to get up, stretch, shake out your limbs, and sip some water. “After a few times, you will automatically start taking those breaks our bodies so desperately need to keep us energized and moving through our day.”
Experiment with new wellness treatments
Everybody is different. That is to say, every body is different, too, so what works for your roommate or friend may not be as effective for you. On top of massage therapy and physical therapy, Brasch recommends trying out body scrubs and bath soaks, which are perfect for alleviating inflammation and relaxing the nervous system. If you haven’t tried yoga yet, then give that a go and see how you feel. She is also seeing more clients book “lymphatic drainage massage, which corresponds with the stagnation that can come from poor posture.”