Does foam roller help Dowager’s hump?

Answered by Ricardo McCardle

Foam rolling can indeed be helpful in addressing Dowager’s hump, also known as postural kyphosis. This condition is often caused by poor posture, which leads to a forward rounding of the upper back and a loss of the natural curve of the spine. Foam rolling can help extend the spine and restore its proper alignment.

When using a foam roller, it is important to focus on the thoracic region of the spine, which is where the Dowager’s hump typically forms. This area is located between the base of the neck and the bottom of the ribcage. By gently rolling the foam roller along the length of the thoracic spine, you can help release tension and tightness in the muscles and fascia surrounding the hump.

One of the main benefits of foam rolling is its ability to provide myofascial release. Myofascial release involves applying pressure to the soft tissues, such as muscles and fascia, to help break up adhesions and knots that may have formed. By releasing these restrictions, foam rolling can help improve mobility and flexibility in the thoracic spine, allowing for better posture and alignment.

To foam roll the thoracic spine, you can start by lying on your back with the foam roller positioned horizontally beneath your upper back. Place your hands behind your head for support and gently roll up and down the length of the thoracic spine, pausing on any areas that feel particularly tight or tender. You can also try rolling slightly to the side, targeting the muscles along the sides of the spine.

In addition to foam rolling, it is important to address the underlying causes of Dowager’s hump. This may involve improving overall posture, strengthening the muscles of the upper back and shoulders, and addressing any muscle imbalances or weaknesses. Seeking guidance from a healthcare professional, such as a physical therapist or chiropractor, can be beneficial in developing a comprehensive plan to address Dowager’s hump.

It is worth noting that foam rolling alone may not completely eliminate Dowager’s hump, especially if it is caused by factors other than poor posture. In some cases, structural changes to the spine may be involved, and foam rolling may only provide temporary relief. Therefore, it is important to take a holistic approach to address this condition, incorporating other interventions as necessary.

Foam rolling can be a helpful tool in addressing Dowager’s hump caused by poor posture. By extending the spine and releasing tension in the muscles and fascia, foam rolling can help restore the natural curve of the spine and improve overall posture. However, it is important to address the underlying causes of Dowager’s hump and seek professional guidance for a comprehensive treatment plan.