Okay, it's no secret you're carrying a bit of cargo up there. What's not so obvious is the pain that you're having because of it. You look healthy on the outside but big melons can mean big back pain. Wouldn't it be nice to "take a load off"?
When women think of their back pain (especially upper or mid back pain) AND they happen to have large breasts at the same time, usually their first thought is "if my breasts weren't so large, maybe I wouldn't have this pain". Their thinking is usually spot on.
The obvious conclusion then is to either a) look for the perfect supportive bra; b) get a massage; or c) have an invasive surgery.
Not so fast. There ARE other options. Just because everything you've tried up to this point hasn't worked as well as you'd like, DOESN'T mean nothing will work. It could just be a couple simple ingredients you're lacking.
Let's talk about cause and effect. It is, after all, not just a good idea - it's the law.
The reason you have pain associated with your large breasts is a matter of math, geometry and physics. For now, let's just call it what I said in the beginning - extra cargo or extra weight.
Now, when you were in school and let's just say you didn't have your backpack. You had to carry a math textbook, a folder, a notebook and your shoes. Stereotypically, boys would carry their things on their side next to their hip and girls would criss-cross their arms and holding their things toward their chest.
If you're smart, you would hold the heaviest thing closest to your body, that being your math text book. It's a matter of mechanics.
As a chiropractor, I see the world from a whole-body point of view, where structure of all the parts is going to affect the function of the whole. I look for trends. And one of the trends of large breasted females with back pain is that their mid-back area is compressing and the spinal nerves are being irritated. Therefore, my thinking about addressing such a problem is "how can we DECOMPRESS the mid-back area, while stabilizing the rest of the spine?"
Notice the picture above. That's me. This is the exercise that I've had patients with mid back pain do at home for years. The mid back goes into a mirror image opposite of what had been a "C" in the opposite direction all day. It's very relaxing...
However, it takes a lot of effort. Consider the end of a long day. You're in pain and you simply want to "decompress" so you can relax and have a pain-free last couple of hours before you go to bed. I have found that exercises that take a lot of effort DON'T bring the results they should - not because they don't "work" but because people are not compliant. And they're not compliant because they don't want to have to go through MORE pain just to get the relief. Speaking of math, it's like a 1+1-1 is still 1 so what's the point? In other words, you have pain, you're going to go through more pain to get some relief and the end result is the same amount of pain.
And this is why it needs to be effortless. Listen, I know all about middle back pain. I am a man and I don't have breasts, but I often feel like there's a knife stuck in the middle of my back, along the right side. Check out this picture.
I happen to have a physical job. The procedure I perform causes me to be in this position for several hours in a day. It causes my mid back to get sore and my shoulders start to go forward.
I also commute quite a distance for work (Southern California real estate prices) and sitting for long periods makes my back compress even more.
So what I did is, with my academic understanding, the feedback from patients and my own trial and error is that I've developed a system of decompressing the middle of the back with the help of foam support pieces and gravity. What this does is it allows you to EFFORTLESSLY stretch the middle of your back so you can FOCUS ON YOUR BREATHING and get oxygen to the tissues that need it most. This stops the cycle of chronic mid-back pain. Even if it took your pain levels down by 20% on a daily basis, that could make a huge difference!
Here's what it looks like. I call this the "sky dive" position:
When I was in the developmental phase of making these support pieces, I knew the pieces needed to be firm yet comfortable. They are made up of exercise equipment foam, which means they're durable and strong.
I couldn't believe how relaxed I felt the first time I did this! The second time I did it I fell asleep (I think for a half hour) and woke up drooling. I know that's disgusting, but I was totally relaxed! As you can see, the shoulders are brought back thanks to gravity and the leverage from these support pieces, and the shoulder support pieces along with the the help of the pelvic pieces is what rounds out the middle of the back. What this does is it stimulates the blood flow to the areas that need it most in the spine.
The advantage of being able to stretch this tricky part of the spine while you're totally relaxed is twofold: 1) you're compliant and you'll follow through with it because it feels so good and you don't have to balance in any yoga positions to get the desired affect and 2) this allows you to focus on your breathing. You can only think about one thing at a time. Now that you don't have to think about "balancing" you can fully "let go" and relax. Not only that, since you're in this face down position, it's already to your advantage to breathe from your belly!
I'd also like you to know that the trapezoid pelvic piece is cut down the middle so it is actually two pieces. This allows space for the belly to go down and up while you're breathing. We knew that, in order for this to be effective, it must be comfortable!
Many women will try to do yoga in order to find that perfect stretch for the back. Child's pose, downward dog and even the Camel Pose are just a couple. These exercises have incredible benefits for the spine, as well as mental and full-body physical health. However, they do require some amount of skill. Yet even if you're more flexible than Gumby (millenials, ask your parents!), you STILL need to use some of your energy to maintain your balance so you don't fall over!
Our goal is to make the stretch deeper by being completely effortless. This is the key to full relaxation and optimal activation of your diaphragm.
See if you're not belly breathing (or if you can't because you're exerting yourself too much), you're not able to get the full benefit out of your stretching time and, at worst, you could actually be injuring yourself.
Blood and oxygen flow must be present in order for your body to begin reversing the deformations that have occurred in your spine and skeletal system. This is a natural process that cannot be rushed.
When professional athletes get injured it's often better if they broke their bone instead of had a severe sprain to the ligaments. This is because the bones usually get better blood supply and they can often make a full recovery. This is not the case with the connective tissues supporting the spine.
When the spine goes out of alignment it first bends off to one side, then it stretches back toward the center to compensate. If the person walks around that way for an extended period of time, the next thing that happens is the spine begins to compress. It is this compression or twisting of the body's framework that accelerates the breakdown of the spinal discs and leads to disability if not corrected. The difference between an 80-year old out on the golf course and an 80-year old pushing a walker is one's spine is healthier than the other.
Now is the time to get out in front of any potential long-term problems associated with your spine and the extra weight you're carrying up top. Being "top heavy" presents a unique challenge but it is always worth the effort to to get your function and mobility back. There is no such thing as a spine transplant. That's why Joseph Pilates famously said "You are as old as your spine".
Our solution to this problem is The Posture Decompression System. The reason it works so well for women with large breasts and back pain is because it helps gravity work IN your favor for once. Not only does it help decompress the spine in the face down position, it also does so in the face up position.
Unlike a zero gravity chair, the unique shape and positioning of our non-slip surface wedge support piece also allows for a gentle stretch of the lower back area, depending on where it is placed along the lower legs. This is the same support piece used to support the pelvis in the face down position.
We already spend 1/3 of our lives decompressing from the effects of gravity in our sleep. The sad reality is that we spend all day in basically what is known as the fetal position and then we go to bed and spend the next 8 hours in the fetal position while we're sleeping. It's no wonder we feel like our spines are compressing and we're getting shorter!
What my patients (and myself) have found is that when the face down position is done for ten minutes right before bed, AND THEN the following isometric exercise is done for five minutes you will wake up taller. Regardless of coffee or any other stimulant, wouldn't it be great to feel taller first thing in the morning - to feel lighter and looser on your way to the shower as you start your day?!? Our system guarantees that you will notice the difference within the first couple days of using it.
The key is the system. Things need to be done in a certain order. We need to repeatedly break the dominoes down and then stack them up again. That's how your body learns the optimal position for the vertebrae and how we can make your chest feel like it isn't such a burden.
Our system was developed from patient feed-back, the author's own trial and error and from the experience of 15 years in the chiropractic field - understanding what different people need, based on body type, to help them get out of pain