As we get older, we tend to think more about our Aging Body.
My definition of an “Aging Body” is the use, misuse and abuse of our body over the years.
It’s the wear and tear to which we subject ourselves… and the older we get, the longer we’ve been doing it.
We tend to live our lives, doing the same things day after day, year after year. Therefore, the body has a tendency to move in the same ways which overwork some areas, while underworking others. This results in uneven muscle tension and asymmetries of the body and face.. that is “the use”.
Then, there’s the “misuse”. We’re talking about lying on the couch, (always in the same favorite spot), reading or watching TV, carrying a baby in the same arm, letting the dog take you for a walk, or sitting in the same poor posture at work, everyday.
“Abuse” is when you knowingly overuse your body. Examples include gardening all day…then doing it again the next day, over-exercising, wearing the wrong shoes – because they look good. You can substitute your own bad ideas.
Over time our Aging Body begins to look, sound and feel older.
Looking older may present as:
- a forward head and rounded shoulders
- a hump at the base of the neck or upper back
- standing bent forwards or sideways
- sagging upper arms
Then there’s the older looking face and neck:
- sunken eyes
- sagging jowls and neck
- disappearing lips
- facial lines, furrows and wrinkles
Sounding older may present as:
- a tense, weakened voice
- heavy breathing
Feeling older may present as:
- having less energy
- stiffness throughout the body
- less flexibility
- aches and pains
Aging does not have to be associated with Pain and Stiffness, Poor Posture, Wrinkles, Etc.
Many of these changes are due to increasing muscle tension over the years. Tension and asymmetries may have been worsened by a past injury or surgery, which might be causing us to move differently, even without realizing it.
There are ways you can reverse and slow the effects of the Aging Body.
Have you noticed those around you who seem to be aging better? Some may be due to genetics. But for those of us not so lucky, a physical therapist with a holistic, hands-on approach may help:
- change the tension in the muscles, resulting in more balanced body and facial appearances,
- relax the tension in the voice,
- reduce aches and pains,
- restore energy and
- teach how to avoid the positions that got you this way in the first place.
Understand how the Body is affected by “aging” and how to minimize its effect in the future. Stay tuned for Part 2. Like our page and follow us on Facebook