What Muscle is That?!?

During your massage, do you ever wonder that? Your massage therapist is just doing their thing, and all of a sudden you feel a twinge, pain, tension, or knot, and think, “what the hell was that?” Luckily, some of my clients will actually ask me, and I will explain what I am doing and why. One of the muscles I get asked the most about is the Trapezius muscle.

The Trapezius muscle is one of the major back muscles and moves, rotates, and stabilizes the shoulder blades. It works ALL the time and can be a culprit for stress headaches and it’s one of the main muscles where people “hold their tension.” They are very large muscles and are on both sides of your neck. Think of the Vulcan Death Grip muscles.

When we are on our tablets, computers, phones, driving, holding our head up, or really doing anything with our arms/shoulders/necks, we are using these muscles. Weak traps can lead to shoulder injuries. You can strengthen your trapezius muscles, without weights, by doing pushups (either on the floor or against a wall), shoulder shrugs, and squeezing your shoulder blades together for 3 seconds. Taking occasional stretch breaks from work can really help as well. Getting circulation into the area and keeping them “warmed up” can help them from getting stiff and losing range of motion.

Getting these muscles massages by a massage therapist can also help relieve tension headaches, increase range of motion, and can even help with arm pain. 100% of my clients have had pain, stiffness, and tension in this area. This is an expertise of mine. Lower those shoulders, take a deep breath, and schedule a massage!