In some hair establishments the stylists have a shampoo technican. In other salons the stylist is responsible for doing all their own shampoos, and rinses.
It also means applying chemical treatments like perms, straighteners, relaxers or similar. Stylists also paint on a wide range of hair colors and apply highlights and low lights by sectioning and folding foils.
Bent Over The Shampoo Bowl
That translates to spending a good portion of their day bent over at a shampoo bowl, giving their fingers an intense workout while being immersed in both hot and cold water as they rinse out chemicals, apply shampoo and finish with a range of rinse out conditioners or similar.
Hair stylists also spend a lot of time with their shoulders, arms and hands up in the air armed with blow dryers and a series of hot irons as they do blow outs and heat style hair. All this washing, blowing, ironing, brushing and combing can put a lot of wear and tear on necks, shoulders and backs.
Of course let's not forget the potential for repetitive strain injury from cutting hair with scissors, razors and clippers.
Hair stylists learn early in their careers that it's important to keep their wrists almost straight rather than curling it under when they cut and style hair.
While some hair establishments require their hair stylists to wear tight skirts and stylish high heels, it's not always the best plan for prevent ankle strains, leg cramps and low back pain.
The Right Shoes Make All The Difference
Wearing the right shoes can make all the difference between a great day at the salon or one full of pain. I learned this the hard way myself when I attended cosmetology school.
Not only were we not allowed to sit down except to take tests or be used as test subjects, we had to stand behind the front desk when it was our turn to greet school customers. Then or course there was all the constant cleaning, sweeping and hauling of products back and forth.
Experts believe hair stylists function best when they wear shoes with heels that are less than 2 1/4" high. Wider shoes are best so toes can move and stretch. The feet extend right up into and through the spine and absorb the majority of the shock of activity. Wearing shoes designed for hair stylists who are on their feet all day long as well as utilizing a cushioned mat can make a huge and positive difference.
Weight Lifting, Massage, Chiropractic, Rolfing
Taking many available steps to strengthen the body is always advisable with a career that is physically demanding like hair styling. Some stylists will work out with weights and do aerobics to strengthen their endurance. Others utilize regular deep tissue massage, chiropractic adjustments or rolfing to help provide relief and strength to the neck, shoulders and back.
Regular massage will release toxicity in the muscles and lymph system which can accumulate as a result of months of misalignment.
Spinal manipulations not only relieve strained necks and shoulders, it can help manage physical, chemical and emotional stress while ensuring the nervous system remains in balance.
The spine is the conduit that the nervous system flows through, and the balance of the spine influences the integrity of the nervous system. Physical stress will produce an imbalance. Spinal misalignment creates pain because of pressure on the nerves.
Hair stylists who are on their feet all day can also benefit from adjusting all the equipment they use so that they can stand up as straight as possible to keep their back stress free. An adjustable chair can make all the difference in how well a hair stylist is able to protect their backs from strain.
Despite the toll it takes on the body, may hair stylists love doing hair so much that they can't imagine doing anything else. The key for them is to make sure they take every precaution to keep their body strong and their feet and hands protected.
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