- Something needs our attention: When you get up from your desk at the end of the day and your hips are tight and lower back hurts, that is your body's way of communicating with you. Your body might be telling you: "Skipping your lunch time walk this whole week is not good for me." Or: "You should get back to your morning Egoscue menu, I liked that." Or: "Your psoas doesn't like going a week without doing the Tower, please do it tonight."
- Something is getting overloaded: When your left hip and lower back complain and spasm after spending an hour shoveling snow or doing yard work, they are complaining about being overworked. Why? Your body is saying: "You can't keep putting all your weight on your left side and only shovel snow throwing it to your left and expect me to put up with this all day! You need to use your right side also. If you do, I'll relax and let you enjoy skiiing tomorrow instead of laying in bed with ice on your back all day as I have planned right now."
- Something is out of alignment: When you get knee pain when running, your knee is trying to tell you something is out of alignment: "Hey! Look, your foot is pointing out, but your thigh is twisting in and that puts me, your knee, in an awkward and painful situation. Please correct this misalignment and I'll be quiet and can enjoy this run again."
- Something is missing: Getting a headache at the end of the day might be your body's way to telling you: "You forgot to drink any water all day, I'm very dehydrated." Or: "Daily exercise increases blood flow and strengthens the cardiovascular system, let's get back to a regular exercise routine." Or: "Because you slouch all day, your traps are excessively tight restricting blood flow to your brain which is causing this pain. Let's try to sit up straight from now on."
- Stop what you are doing. If you are running and your knee is hurting, your body is telling you that if you continue this activity you might injure yourself. Stop the painful activity and then move on to step 2.
- Look at your posture in a mirror. Your body is very good at sending messages visually to you. Is one shoulder higher or lower than the other? Does one foot point out more than the other? Has your lower back lost it's curve or your upper back rounded excessively?
- Listen to your intuition. Your body is very smart and will tell you what to do. Listen to it. What is your intuition telling you? What's your gut say? Follow your body's lead, even if it goes against what Doctor Google says.
- Muscle tension in the upperback especially the upper traps. This is usually caused by excessive thoracic flexion, rounded shoulders, and/or forward head posture - all of which lengthen the traps and put them under increased demand - a recipe for pain.
- Insufficient oxygen getting to the brain. This can be caused by muscle tension as described above which resticts blood flow, or ineffective circulation caused by lack of exercise and movement, or inefficient breathing patterns (often caused by bad posture) which decreases oxygen in the blood.
- Dehydration which decreases blood volume and thus oxygen getting to the brain.
- Low blood sugar which decreases sugar/energy getting to the brain.
- Stress which increases muscle tension and inefficient breathing which has the effects described above.
Remember when you get a headache or any other pain, stop, look, and listen and think about what message your body is sending you. Does something needs your attention? Is something is getting overloaded? Is something is out of alignment? Is something is missing? If you take these steps you will be able to get the underlying cause of your headaches.
Egoscue exercises for headaches and sinus relief
Forward head posture
How posture affects lung capacity
Why sitting is bad for you