What Causes Tech Neck?
In today’s world, we’re on our phones, computers, and tech devices for hours a day, making tech neck a common problem. When you look down at your phone for prolonged periods of time, the muscles that surround the neck become overactive. This consistent forward head tilt develops into poor posture over time, which also typically means soreness or stiffness in your neck, shoulders, and upper back, headaches, and neck pain.
Why is tilting your head forward so wrong? It all has to do with the weight that’s placed on your neck and spine. When you sit up straight with your neck and spine in line, the weight of the average head is about 10-12 pounds. At a 15-degree forward angle tilt, 27 additional pounds of weight are put on the neck. At a 60-degree angle, 60 extra pounds of weight need to be supported by the neck. It’s not just about the forward leaning position that’s bad, it also has to do with the extra weight and stress it causes for muscles, ligaments, and tendons that surround the neck.
How to Relieve the Symptoms of Tech Neck
The good news about tech neck is that it can easily be prevented. If you’re already experiencing tech neck, the same tactics below will also help relieve the symptoms.
Stretching can help repair muscle imbalances that develop from forward head posture. When muscles are overused, it causes them to shorten. By incorporating stretches into your routine, you can elongate muscles which allows them to operate more efficiently.
Exercises that target the neck and surrounding muscles are a great way to combat tech neck. A strong neck is more robust and can support more weight. You can find some example exercises for tech neck here.
3. Raise your Phone
Simply elevating your phone during use will help prevent tech neck from getting worse. Instead of holding your phone down in your lap, hold it at eye level. Using a Popsocket or something similar can help hold the device up higher while maintaining a good grip.
4. Active Recovery
Active recovery is a great way to loosen up tight muscles and help repair damaged tissue. The body’s natural recovery process relies on muscle activation to move oxygenated blood into an overworked area and flush out the waste that causes stiff, sore muscles. By participating in low-stress muscle movement, like a light jog or swim, you can kickstart the exchange of nutrients and waste – making you feel better and keeping your body healthy. A more effective option is using Marc Pro, a recovery tool that creates muscle movement to get these benefits (see below for more info).
5. Take a Break
Getting up and moving around every so often will give your neck and your eyes a much needed break from long stretches of screen time. Be sure to take breaks throughout the day, aiming for a couple minutes every 30 minutes.
Tech Neck Recovery with Marc Pro
Overused and tight neck muscles can find relief with this Marc Pro pad placement. By placing one pad on the left trap and one pad on the right trap, the muscles surrounding the neck will activate, bringing in fresh blood and getting rid of the waste. Marc Pro is an easy and convenient way to get in active recovery wherever you want.