What is kyphosis?

Kyphosis, or ‘thoracic kyphosis’ more specifically, is an excessive curvature of the mid back. The spine has three natural curves – one in the low back, one in the upper back and one in the neck. Any one of these can become excessive which can cause effects ranging from mild discomfort to totally debilitating pain however some people do not experience any noticeable symptoms. Kyphosis is more common in teenagers and the elderly but many people in between those ages have begun to experience it.

What causes kyphosis?

Kyphosis is extremely common in modern man primarily due to his sedentary nature. The main factors leading to kyphosis are:

  • Developmental issues (Scheuermann’s disease)
  • Depression and Mental Health issues
  • Growth spurt around puberty
  • Excess time spent sitting
  • Bad postural habits
  • Lack of stretching the chest and arms
  • Lack of muscle tone in the mid back
  • Lack of mid back mobility
  • Aging
  • Degenerative bone diseases
  • Injuries and Trauma

Are there other names for kyphosis?

  • Thoracic Kyphosis
  • Slouching
  • Scheuermann’s Disease
  • Hunchback
  • Roundback
  • Postural Kyphosis

How can massage help with kyphosis?

Massage can be a great help with kyphosis by lengthening and stretching the muscles that become tight or hypertonic. Other techniques such as PNF and MET may be used to help to retrain the nervous system to activate and strengthen the weak muscles. Massages of longer duration are sure to activate your parasympathetic nervous system and therefore will put your whole body in a state where it can heal.

Which muscles need to be released?

  • Pectoralis Major and Minor
  • Biceps Brachii
  • Anterior Deltoid
  • SCM (Sternocleidomastoid)
  • Upper Trapezius
  • Levator Scapula

Which muscles need to be strengthened?

  • Rhomboids
  • Teres Minor
  • Latissimus Dorsi
  • Mid and Lower Trapezius
  • Thoracic Erector Spinae

What else do you recommend for kyphosis?

I highly recommend the following additional exercises and services for kyphosis:

  • Alexander Technique
  • Foam Rolling (or rolling with a ‘peanut’)
  • A gym workout designed to correct the issue
  • Exercise in general
  • Deep breathing
  • Yoga or Pilates
  • Holistic Counselling (for cases where mental health is a contributing factor)

What can I do about it at home?

At home you can stretch your chest and arms, foam roll for spinal mobility, practice good posture and take frequent breaks from the computer.

What can I do about it at work?

Have your workstation assessed for proper ergonomics, take regular breaks and pay attention to sitting well. You can try sitting on a fit ball or other specialty seating and make sure you exercise and get a regular massage.

How long will a kyphosis treatment be?

I believe a good kyphosis treatment needs to be no less than an hour. There are a lot of muscles that need to be released and if stretches, pnf and met are used, less than an hour will simply not be adequate to achieve a positive outcome.

How many sessions are required to treat kyphosis?

If you have had this issue for a long time (many years) one treatment will make you feel better but will not have a lasting effect. I recommend at least three weekly sessions of one hour to make some good progress and for a complete solution you will have to stretch, foam roll and practice good posture in the week between each massage. Massage can help enormously but it is a not a magical silver bullet.

How can I book a massage with you?

You can book a massage by calling 0449 264 980 or 

Please mention your condition (‘Kyphosis’) in the custom notes for the booking to save time.