Gym members repeatedly reported their complaints of stiffness and tightness in the upper back, shoulders, and neck. They voiced their concerns about tension headaches and generalised fatigue, while being time-poor to attend their preferred frequency of soft tissue intervention, like remedial massage or physiotherapy, especially around their obligations of work, family, and sport. Individual concerns were discussed in terms of their job design, work factors, and interactions with their workstation. However, collectively this was a group that wanted personal health strategies for at-home and at-the-gym intervention, while pursuing the custom strategies in other life areas.
A see-one/do-one/teach-one training model was presented per the “Straighten Up to Power Up” program while participants worked with partners to learn how to assess their posture and functional movement patterns. They developed strategies to support their upper quadrant (neck, shoulder, and upper back region) with mobilisation, release, and strength-based exercise strategies. Participants used common and easy-to-find items, like tennis balls, bands, foam rollers, hard balls or small weights, and bodyweight to target trigger points (hyperirritable tissue that feels “knotted”) and fascial planes (connective tissue regions) and identified at least three of their favourite techniques to release restrictions in their body, all of which could be done in under six minutes at home or at the gym.
Before and after images were taken to help participants see the changes and understand why they were feeling so free in their bodies after a single session of intervention. They were thrilled! News about the program was posted in the gym newsletter and the members were seen practicing their new strategies during their floor-time after their regular gym sessions to address their mobility, postural, movement, and functional needs.