If you are in the same position for a large portion of your day, then it is likely that you have muscles that have become overly tense. This is very common for those who spend their time sitting at a computer desk or behind the wheel of a vehicle.
There are also many labor positions that keep these muscles tightened throughout the day. No matter the cause for the tension in your body, you can learn how to stretch your upper back so that your body is more relaxed and comfortable.
If you are experiencing pain in your neck and back area, have too much weight on your body, or numbness and tingling in your arms, you should make an appointment with your primary care physician. Discuss your health concerns and your plans to alleviate your discomfort. Ask your doctor if there are any restrictions on your movements that you need to remember when practicing your stretches. If you are experiencing numbness or tingling, it is possible that your doctor may send you to a nerve specialist before determining what types of exercises are safe for you to perform.
Rather than attempt to stretch for a long period of time at the end of the day, it is a better idea to stretch these muscles throughout your day. Every half hour or so, stop what you are doing at your desk and take a couple of minutes to stretch these muscles. You can also use that time to focus your eyes on a distant point to reduce the amount of eye strain you experience.
Make sure that you have good posture when you are learning how to stretch your
upper back. Find some pictures online that show proper positioning for both sitting and standing. Then, practice in front of a mirror, comparing your alignment with that in the photos. The more you do this, the more naturally good posture will come to you. This will help to reduce the strain on your back, and is necessary when you are stretching to ensure you activate the muscles properly.
You can choose from a variety of exercises to do throughout the day. Make sure that during each mini-session that you work your neck, upper back and shoulders. Look at a chart of the muscles in this part of your body, and you will see the complex working responsible for holding the weight of your head and controlling your arms all day long. Be patient with yourself, because it may take some time for you to loosen all of these sufficiently, particularly if you have been tense for many years. However, if you continue to work on it, you will reach your flexibility goals.
The neck and upper back are under a great deal of strain throughout the day, especially if you are in a stationary position at work. Learning how to stretch it properly, and doing so several times each day, should relieve any pain you are experiencing and prevent future ones.