There's a lot of information on social media, television and even in primary practitioners windows on my way to work about the 'dangers of texting' and how it is causing bad posture, incorrect cervical alignment and a whole gamut of health issues that are associated with looking downward. It is very true that misalignment of the cervical spine has a wide reaching range of issues that can be attributed to the heaviest part of the spine being in a forward position (read more), but I'm about to go out on a limb here and suggest that maybe texting isn't the bad culprit that it could be.
I agree in principle with the articles and studies about to be published in the New York Journal of Surgical Technology International, as well as directors of Rhode Island Physical Therapy institutes, Applied Psychophysiology and Biofeedback in San Francisco, the Israel Institute of Technology... the list goes on. But whilst the advent of a digital lifestyle may be changing the way we behave and interact, the fundamental argument still remains that the blame is maybe not on our devices. So before you throw away your tablet and mobile - consider MOVING!
The marketing of fellow therapists and professionals is very sensible and very targeted. Its clever. But it's also (I'm about to get lynched) BOLLOCKS. If you are involved in a daily activity that involves stresses on your body and you are feeling the pressure from that, then you should be doing something about it! Exercise, walking, playing with the kids, throwing a ball for the dog... these things have always been prevalent in our society and always been an avid antidote to work place stresses and daily grinds!
The studies list up to 7-8 hours of texting, reading and social media surfing. WOW - I wish I had 7-8 hours a day for that kind of indulgences. Although it would be foolish of me to perhaps not think about some of the more youthful members of our community who can seemingly spend hours on end on their devices - try taking a 16yo around Europe and getting him to appreciate a private Parisienne guided tour without the need to get back home and back on the internet and you will get the idea. But these figures aside, if your daily activities are encouraging a curved posture response and habit forming issue, the principle is still exactly the same as if you were stuck sitting in a desk for 8-10 hours a day (sounding familiar). YOU NEED TO MOVE. You need to get up at lunchtime, go for a run, change your physical presence, your surroundings, your normal modus operandi. It's about taking back control and using your body to make it work the way that you want it.
There was a campaign on arthritis prevention in the late 80's, early 90's which still resonates with me. MOVE IT OR LOSE IT. It's a simple process of using what you have so you can keep it active and toned. If you want your brain to remain active and not suffer from dementia - exercise it. If you want your knees to stop aching in the winter - get them moving, get them active and they will respond. Sitting down is not going to give anyone a better, healthier outlook on life. GOOGLE IT - the studies are out there. (http://www.karenpostal.com/exercise-think-better/ http://well.blogs.nytimes.com/2013/08/07/how-exercise-can-help-us-learn/?_r=0 http://www.active.com/fitness/articles/how-exercise-boosts-your-brainpower)
I say this to my clients often - 'anything is better than nothing'. So if you simply can't drag yourself to your Tai Chi or Yoga class on a cold winters night - do something else. Walk the big hill on your street twice. If you can't go to team training because you have been under the pump at work, get thee to the park and do a small 15 minute circuit of situps and push ups. If you can't possibly do sprint training at lunchtime, do your own version at 8am in the morning on the way to work. Get creative people - find a solution that works. Even if that solution is only 15 min of stretching in front of the tele at night, something is better than nothing. You may actually find that once you start 15 min of exercise, you'll actually end up doing 20-25min.
You are responsible for your own health and your own well being. Blaming the advent of technology and the influence of devices on our lifestyle is a complete COP OUT of responsibility. It's very clever marketing but it's nothing new. We have been sitting at desks and machines since the advent of the industrial age. (that's the early 1800's). Few of us have remained serfs and farmers and tending the herds, though there is a reason that those professions that are akin to this are often promoted as a photoshopped ideal of life. But I do not believe that we have yet to become the species that does nothing and relies on technology to be the burden of our life - or the causes of our pain.